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Diaspora and Multiculturalism

Common Traditions and New Developments

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Edited by Monika Fludernik

In postcolonial theory we have now reached a new stage in the succession of key concepts. After the celebrations of hybridity in the work of Homi Bhabha and Gayatri Spivak, it is now the concept of diaspora that has sparked animated debates among postcolonial critics. This collection intervenes in the current discussion about the 'new' diaspora by placing the rise of diaspora within the politics of multiculturalism and its supercession by a politics of difference and cultural-rights theory. The essays present recent developments in Jewish negotiations of diasporic tradition and experience, discussing the reinterpretation of concepts of the 'old' diaspora in late twentieth- century British and American Jewish literature. The second part of the volume comprises theoretical and critical essays on the South Asian diaspora and on multicultural settings between Australia, Africa, the Caribbean and North America. The South Asian and Caribbean diasporas are compared to the Jewish prototype and contrasted with the Turkish diaspora in Germany. All essays deal with literary reflections on, and thematizations of, the diasporic predicament.

The Flight of the Vernacular

Seamus Heaney, Derek Walcott and the Impress of Dante

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Maria Cristina Fumagalli

In this book, Dante, Seamus Heaney and Derek Walcott engage in an eloquent and meaningful conversation. Dante’s capacity for being faithful to the collective historical experience and true to the recognitions of the emerging self, the permanent immediacy of his poetry, the healthy state of his language, which is so close to the object that the two are identified, and his adamant refusal to get lost in the wide and open sea of abstraction – all these are shown to have affected, and to continue to affect, Heaney’s and Walcott’s work. The Flight of the Vernacular, however, is not only a record of what Dante means to the two contemporary poets but also a cogent study of Heaney’s and Walcott’s attitude towards language and of their views on the function of poetry in our time. Heaney’s programmatic endeavour to be “adept at dialect” and Walcott’s idiosyncratic redefinition of the vernacular in poetry as tone rather than as dialect – apart from having Dantean overtones – are presented as being associated with the belief that poetry is a social reality and that language is a living alphabet bound to the “opened ground” of the world.

The English Book and Its Marginalia

Colonial/Postcolonial Literatures after Heart of Darkness

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Asako Nakai

This book is about books that recount the story of encountering another book. There are various versions of the story told and retold from the heyday of imperialism up to the present day (Homi Bhabha calls it the trope of ‘the discovery of the English book’); by considering each of these versions carefully, we may also give an alternative account of twentieth-century ‘English literature’ as the site of an intercultural discourse. This project is very much inspired by debate on postcolonial theory, namely, the debate between Said and Bhabha. Part I is devoted to the discussion of Conrad, especially of Heart of Darkness, and investigates how the novella has continually been reproduced to the extent that it represents ‘the English Book’ of colonial/postcolonial literatures. The chapter on Hugh Clifford (Ch.3) is virtually the first intensive critique of his novels, such as Saleh (1908), with a particular focus on their intertextual relations with Conrad’s texts. Part II examines how the story of the English Book is repeated and revised in the texts of the following authors: Joyce Cary, Isak Dinesen, V. S. Naipaul, Kaiko Takeshi, and Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o.

Conrad Intertexts & Appropriations

Essays in Memory of Yves Hervouet

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Edited by Gene M. Moore, Owen Knowles and J.H. Stape

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Jane Plastow

This study, the first book-length treatment of its subject, draws on a large base of elusive material and on extensive field research. It is the result of the author's wide experience of teaching and producing theatre in Africa, and of her fascination with the ways in which traditional performance forms have interacted with, or have resisted, non-indigenous modes of dramatic representation in the process of evolving into the vital theatres of the present day. A comparative historical study is offered of the three national cultures of Ethiopia, Tanganyika/Tanzania, and Rhodesia/Zimbabwe. Not only (scripted) drama is treated, but also theatre in the sense of the broader range of performance arts such as dance and song. The development of theatre and drama is seen against the background of centuries of cultural evolution and interaction, from pre-colonial times, through phases of African and European imperialism, to the liberation struggles and newly-won independence of the present. The seminal relationship between theatre, society and politics is thus a central focus. Topics covered include: the function in theatre of vernacular and colonial languages; performance forms under feudal, communalist and socialist régimes; cultural militancy and political critique; the relationship of theatre to social élites and to the peasant class; state control (funding and censorship); racism and separate development in the performing arts; contemporary performance structures (amateur, professional, community and university theatre). Due attention is paid to prominent dramatists, theatre groups and theatre directors, and the author offers new insight into African perceptions of the role of the artist in the theatre, as well as dealing with the important subject of gender roles (in drama, in performance ritual, and in theatre practice). The book is illustrated with contemporary photographs.

Conrad and Gide

Translation and Intertextuality

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Russell West-Pavlov

This study examines the relations between the work of the Polish-English novelist Joseph Conrad and the French Nobel Prize winner André Gide. Gide's translation of Conrad's Typhoon is read as a work belonging paradoxically to the oeuvres of both writers, where their respective preoccupations meet with illuminating results.
Focusing also on other major works by Conrad and Gide, the study suggests that the intertextual and personal interaction between these two masters of 20th Century fiction was governed by processes of identification and projection, conflict between master and disciple and a consequent resistant reading of texts, and confrontation with linguistic and cultural heterogeneity.
Issues of translation theory, psychoanalysis and intertextuality are brought together to offer a glimpse of a possible dialogue between literature and ethics.
This study will be of interest to students and researchers in English, French and Comparative Literature.

The Romantic Imagination

Literature and Art in England and Germany

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Edited by Frederick Burwick and Jürgen Klein

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Norbert Bachleitner

Die Untersuchung verfolgt die Entwicklung der Subgattung Sozialroman in den drei behandelten Literaturen, wobei der Akzent auf der Rezeption der englischen und französischen Romane in Deutschland liegt. Der Verfasser versteht Rezeption im umfassenden Sinn und berücksichtigt nicht nur die literarische Kritik und die produktive Aufnahme der ausländischen Vorgänger durch die deutschen Autoren des 19. Jahrhunderts, sondern auch die Verbreitung der Werke durch den Buchhandel, die Leihbibliotheken und das Zeitungsfeuilleton, ihre Erwähnungen in autobiographischen Texten und Briefen, ihre Übersetzungen, die Zensur und die Einwirkung der Sozialromane auf die Mentalität und das Verhalten der Leser. Dadurch entsteht ein detail- und farbenreiches Bild der Beziehungen des deutschen Publikums, der Kritik und der Autoren zur englischen und französischen Literatur, das die herkömmlichen Vorstellungen von einer kulturellen Sonderentwicklung in Deutschland infolge ökonomischer und politischer 'Verspätung' infrage stellt.

Between Time and Eternity

Nine Essays on W.B. Yeats and his Contemporaries Hofmannsthal and Blok

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Edited by Paul Kirschner and Alexander Stillmark

Something Understood

Studies in Anglo-Dutch Literary Translation

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Edited by Bart Westerweel and Theo D'haen