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This article deals with the literature on the French nonprofit sector (NPS). A preliminary part is devoted to presenting and discussing the characteristics that shape the approaches to this sector in France. We stress the strong influence of legal categories on the sector’s definition and, in this context, the importance of the status inherited from the 1901 Act on contracts of association. This raises a problem for a more analytical approach to the sector, because the diversity of the nonprofit organizations (NPOs) regulated under this Act risks being overshadowed. In this first part, we also underline the primacy accorded in France to the concept of the social economy, which has today become the social and solidarity economy (SSE), over that of the nonprofit sector.
In the second part, the article outlines some landmarks in the history of the French NPS. French NPOs were for many years objects of suspicion, arbitrariness and repression on the part of the public authorities and this persisted until the 1901 legislation on contracts of association was enacted. However, this hostile context did not prevent the sector from having a richer existence than is sometimes admitted.
This literature review also focuses on empirical studies of the sector, placing a particular emphasis on the more recent ones. These French studies basically adopt two types of approach. The first is concerned essentially with the NPOs and focuses its attention on their economic importance, whether measured in terms of financial resources, employment, or, less frequently, added value. The second approach investigates the kinds of individual participation the sector engenders by examining the various forms it takes, such as membership of NPOs or voluntary work.
This review ends with the analysis of the challenges that NPS faces in a context characterized by the increasing constraints on public funding, changes in the nature of such funding with a substitution of contracts for subsidies, an increased competition among NPOs as well as between NPOs and for-profit enterprises. The article concludes that, despite the advances in research on the French NPS, some aspects—like formal volunteering and the role of voluntary associations—are still understudied, while others—like informal groups and informal volunteering—are almost totally ignored.
A Study of Post-War Rumour in Tartu
Under certain conditions, some rumours, which were established as part of folklore already long ago, may become fixed in the memory and the subconscious of several generations. This is what happened with the rumour about a human sausage factory after the Second World War. In Tartu, Estonia, this rumour obtained a symbolic meaning and power due to the politics of the totalitarian Soviet regime. The memories of the post-war period are still vivid in the collective mind, and the onetime rumour of sausage factories incorporates the population’s tensions, pain, loss, choices, defiance and irreconcilability. The individual and community emotions that are brought to a focus in this discourse are an indicator of defining social boundaries and behaviour, of ‘us’ and ‘them’. When describing the events that took place in Tartu, folklore becomes a powerful tool with which to construe the meaning of the era at the social level.
Through documents, photos and people’s memories, the book offers an insight into the city of Tartu after the Second World War and reveals the several layers of meaning represented by rumour in this period.
In September of 1701, events transpired in Naples that, through frequent retellings, became popularly known as “the conspiracy of the Prince of Macchia.” Rapidly gaining fame, this apparently anonymous narrative was soon incorporated by different historians in their history of the transition years between the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. But who was the initial bard or narrator, the town clerk or citizen who first gave testimony of this event by creating a Latin text of the story of the Prince of Macchia? Giambattista Vico was not among the claimants to the authorship of the fabulous story that changed the future of the Kingdom of Naples. Nevertheless, four scholars across the nineteenth and twentieth centuries were themselves convinced, and managed to convince the intellectual world as well, that Vico, then a young teacher of rhetoric at the University of Naples, was indeed the source of this original Latin narration of this oft retold Neapolitan history. This book provides the original Latin text with a parallel translation, as well as historical context and analysis of both the text’s authorship history and the account itself.
The Triumphal Entry of Prince Philip of Spain into Antwerp
In 1549, Prince Philip of Spain made his entry into Antwerp together with his father, Emperor Charles V. For this occasion the rich city of commerce was transformed into a large theatrical space with triumphal arches and tableaux vivants as stage settings. The citizens and the princes acted as actors in a splendid parade, a battle array of four thousand participants, impressive tournaments and a huge firework display. This resulted in one of the most expensive and impressive festivities of the early modern period. The organizing municipality drew on various theatrical genres in an effort to bring about a renewal in the existing power relations between the Habsburg rulers and themselves, as well as the relations of the rulers with the population. Exactly how the city and the monarch were depicted was illustrative of the precious balance of power between the Habsburgs and the city fathers and of both parties toward their respective subjects. How these power relations were precisely staged in Antwerp is studied in this book.
Discourses of German Wartime Suffering in National and International Perspective
Over the last decade German culture has been engaged in a re-examination of the traumatic events of the Second World War and their post-war legacy in the public and private sphere. This shift in German memory culture from a focus on responsibility for the Holocaust to a focus on wartime suffering has attracted a lot of critical attention over the past decade, in both Cultural and Literary Studies and History. This volume brings together British, German, Dutch and American scholars from the fields of Cultural Studies, History and Sociology to address the national and international significance of discourses of ‘German wartime suffering’ in post-war and contemporary Germany. The focus of this interdisciplinary volume is both on the historical roots of the ‘Germans as victims’ narratives and the forms of their continuing existence in contemporary public memory and culture. The first three sections of this volume explore the conditions of German victim discourses in a variety of media and public arenas from historiography, sociology, literature and film to monuments, civil defence bunkers and local public memory. The final section sets the contemporary re-articulation of German wartime suffering in an international context with respect to its reception and its reflection in both Western and Eastern Europe and Israel.
Metaphor, Geography, and Flight Autobiography in America 1927-1954
Writing the Heavenly Frontier celebrates the early voices of the air as it examines the sky as a metaphorical and political landscape. While flight histories usually focus on the physical dangers of early aviation, this book introduces the figurative liabilities of ascension. Early pilot-writers not only grappled with an unwieldy machine; they also grappled with poetics that were extremely selective. Tropes that cast Charles Lindbergh as the transcendent hero of the new millennium were the same ones that kept women, black Americans, and indigenous peoples imaginatively tethered to the ground. The most popular flight autobiographies in the United States posited a hero who rose from the mundane to the miraculous; and yet the most startling autobiographies point out the social factors that limited or forbade vertical movement—both literally and figuratively. A survey of pilot writing, the book will appeal to flight enthusiasts and people interested in American autobiography and culture. But it will also appeal strongly to readers interested in the poetics and politics of place.
In this book, Camila Loew analyzes four women’s testimonial literary writings on the Holocaust to examine and question some of the tenets of the fields of Holocaust studies, gender studies, and testimony. Through a close reading of the works of Charlotte Delbo, Margarete Buber-Neumann, Ruth Klüger, and Marguerite Duras, Loew foregrounds these authors’ search for a written form to engage with their experiences of the extreme. Although each chapter contains its individual focus and features, the book possesses a unity in intention, concerns, and consequences. In the theoretical introduction that unites the four chapters, Loew eschews essentialism and revises the emergence of the field of Women and Holocaust studies from the early 1980s on, and signals some of its shortcomings. In response, and in accordance with a recent turn in various disciplines of the Humanities, Loew highlights the ethical dimension of testimony and its responsible commitment to the other. In dealing with the texts as literary testimonies—a complex genre, between literature and history—, testimony is freed from the obligation to respond to the requirements of factual truth, and becomes a privileged form to voice the traumatic event, and to symbolically explore the role of excess.
Editor: Barbara Schaff
This volume explores the dynamic and productive cultural forces engendered by exiles, wanderers, and diasporic communities in Britain and Italy over more than five centuries. It investigates the historic resonance of transnational encounters and movements between two European cultures that look back on a long history of cross-fertilisation. Drawn from a range of academic disciplines including literary studies, history, musicology, art history and bibliography, it presents the ways in which exiles, émigrés, intermediaries and their attendant cultural perspectives interact with the sometimes repressive, sometimes productive religious or political systems and ideologies that they encounter. This volume pays tribute to the stimulating exchange, circulation, and appropriation that has occurred between Britain and Italy, showing that the condition of displacement can lead not only to the articulation of loss and grief, but also to fruitful forms of interaction.
The Politics of Bearing After-Witness to Nineteenth-Century Suffering
This collection constitutes the first volume in Rodopi’s Neo-Victorian Series, which explores the prevalent but often problematic re-vision of the long nineteenth century in contemporary culture. Here is presented for the first time an extended analysis of the conjunction of neo-Victorian fiction and trauma discourse, highlighting the significant interventions in collective memory staged by the belated aesthetic working-through of historical catastrophes, as well as their lingering traces in the present. The neo-Victorian’s privileging of marginalised voices and its contestation of master-narratives of historical progress construct a patchwork of competing but equally legitimate versions of the past, highlighting on-going crises of existential extremity, truth and meaning, nationhood and subjectivity. This volume will be of interest to both researchers and students of the growing field of neo-Victorian studies, as well as scholars in memory studies, trauma theory, ethics, and heritage studies. It interrogates the ideological processes of commemoration and forgetting and queries how the suffering of cultural and temporal others should best be represented, so as to resist the temptations of exploitative appropriation and voyeuristic spectacle. Such precarious negotiations foreground a central paradox: the ethical imperative to bear after-witness to history’s silenced victims in the face of the potential unrepresentability of extreme suffering.