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Volume Editor: Kanta Dihal
The question of evil is one of the oldest and most intensely studied topics in intellectual history. In fiction, legend and mythology the boundary between good and evil is often depicted as clear-cut, at least to the reader or listener, who is supposed to understand such tales as lessons and warnings. Evil is something that must be avoided by the hero in some cases and vanquished in others; it is either the exact opposite of the expected good behaviour, or its complete absence. Even so, for the characters in these didactic fictions, it turns out to be deceptively easy to fall to the infernal, ‘dark’ side. This volume draws on the expertise of an interdisciplinary group of contributors to chart events and deeds of an ‘evil’ nature that have been lived in the (recent) past and have become part of history, from individual to institutionalised evil.
Comparing Grief in French, British and Canadian Great War Fiction (1977-2014) offers a comparative analysis of twenty-three First World War novels. Engaging with such themes as war trauma, facial disfigurement, women’s war identities, communal bonds, as well as the concepts of mourning and post-memory, Anna Branach-Kallas and Piotr Sadkowski identify the dominant trends in recent French, British and Canadian fiction about the Great War. Referring to historical, sociological, philosophical and literary sources, they show how, by both consolidating and contesting national myths, fiction continues to construct the 1914-1918 conflict as a cultural trauma, illuminating at the same time some of our most recent ethical concerns.
Fauna-criticism, Ethics and the Representation of Animals in Spanish American Fiction and Poetry
In Creature Discomfort: Fauna-criticism, Ethics, and the Representation of Animals in Spanish American Fiction and Poetry, Scott M. DeVries uncovers a tradition in Spanish American literature where animal-ethical representations anticipate many of the most pressing concerns from present debates in animal studies. The author documents moments from the corpus that articulate long-standing positions such as a defense of animal rights or advocacy for liberationism, that engage in literary philosophical meditations concerning mind theory and animal sentience, and that anticipate current ideas from Critical Animal Studies including the rejection of hierarchical differentiations between the categories human and nonhuman.

Creature Discomfort innovates the notion of “fauna-criticism” as a new literary approach within animal studies; this kind of analysis emphasizes the reframing of literary history to expound animal ethical positions from literary texts, both those that have been considered canonical as well as those that have long been neglected. In this study, DeVries employs fauna-criticism to examine nonhuman sentience, animal interiority, and other ethical issues such as the livestock and pet industries, circuses, zoos, hunting, and species extinction in fictional narrative and poetry from the nineteenth century, modernista, Regional, indigenista, and contemporary periods of Spanish American literature.

Author: Paula Morgan
This volume was first published by Inter-Disciplinary Press in 2015.

This volume explores the diversity of transnational catalysts of trauma and the interconnected nature of its global out workings. With reference to literary, filmic, visual and memorial representations, the volume reflects trauma as a multi-contextual impact emanating out of a macrocosmic and microcosmic social catalysts. The essays deal with broad issues of religious and political ideologies, imperial impulses, ethnic and national contestation and the myriad ways in which they drill down to the individual level - domestic violence and other violations, poverty and oppression, inequity, gnawing injustice and more. They also crisscross over domestic, national and global political frameworks. The essays speak to the imperative to represent painful collective pasts so as to alleviate its agony and acknowledge the right of its victims and perpetrators to give witness. By extension, it speaks to the practical and ideological imperative to engage issues of trauma, ethics and testimony.
Volume Editors: Anja A. Drautzburg and Jackson Oldfield
This volume was first published by Inter-Disciplinary Press in 2013.

In November 2011, academics from across the disciplines came together to discuss the idea of suffering. This book is a product of that meeting, bringing together the ideas of 17 authors to discuss, from different perspectives, what does it mean to suffer and can meaning be made out of suffering?
This book reconstructs the cornerstones of Jesus’s moral teachings about how to lead a good, even exemplary, human life. It does so in a way that is compatible with the most prominent, competing versions of the historical Jesus. The work also contrast Jesus’ understanding of the best way to lead our lives with that of Friedrich Nietzsche. Both Jesus and Nietzsche were self-consciously moral revolutionaries. Jesus refashioned the imperatives of Jewish law to conform to what he was firmly convinced was the divine will. Nietzsche aspired to transvalue the dominant values of his time —which themselves were influenced greatly by Christianity— in service of what he took to be a higher vision. The interplay of these radical versions of the good human life, seasoned with critical commentary emerging from modern findings in the sciences and humanities, opens possibilities and lines of inquiry that can inform our choices in answering that enduring, paramount question, “How should we live our lives?”
This volume was first published by Inter-Disciplinary Press in 2012.

The chapters assembled in this e-Book are a taste of an ongoing discussion on evil and magic which promises to last as long as ‘the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing’ and while the realisation that ‘magic is believing in yourself: if you can do that, you can make anything happen’ does not become a global motto. The first group of chapters, collected in Part I, addresses the ethics and effects of translating magic into literary representations, as well as real-life current practices, of creativity and personal change on the one hand, and of the harmful, malevolent infliction of pain on a third party on another, thus challenging the boundaries of the cultural binary constructions of magic as either good or evil. In Part II, the second group of chapters examines several philosophical, theological, historical, literary, political and pop culture attempts towards understanding different meanings, and kinds, of evil, thus broadening our perception of what evil is and how it has been theorized from Plato to contemporary international politics. This is our time, our call, our responsibility, to undo evil by carrying the magical torch of good to the next station – so that good, as if by magic, can also become contagious among the human kind.
Author: Havi Carel
Life and Death in Freud and Heidegger argues that mortality is a fundamental structuring element in human life. The ordinary view of life and death regards them as dichotomous and separate. This book explains why this view is unsatisfactory and presents a new model of the relationship between life and death that sees them as interlinked. Using Heidegger’s concept of being towards death and Freud’s notion of the death drive, it demonstrates the extensive influence death has on everyday life and gives an account of its structural and existential significance. By bringing the two perspectives together, this book presents a reading of death that establishes its significance for life, creates a meeting point for philosophical and psychoanalytical perspectives, and examines the problems and strengths of each. It then puts forth a unified view, based on the strengths of each position and overcoming the problems of each. Finally, it works out the ethical consequences of this view. This volume is of interest for philosophers, mental health practitioners and those working in the field of death studies.
Japan, Russia, and Turkey are major examples of countries with different ethnic, religious, and cultural background that embarked on the path of modernization without having been colonized by a Western country. In all three cases, national consciousness has played a significant role in this context. The project of Modernity is obviously of European origin, but is it essentially European? Does modernization imply loss of a country’s cultural or national identity? If so, what is the “fate” of the modernization process in these cases? The presence of the idea and reality of civil society can be considered a real marker of Modernity in this respect, because it presupposes the development of liberalism, individualism and human rights. But are these compatible with nationalism and with the idea of a national religion?
These questions are the more pressing, as Japan is considered part of the Western world in many respects, and Russia and Turkey are defining their relation to the European Union in different ways. An investigation of these three countries, set off against more general reflections, sheds light on the possibilities or limitations of modernization n a non-European context.