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Sports Semiotics applies semiotics (and other disciplines, secondarily) to analyse the social, cultural, economic and psychological significance of sports. It includes a primer on semiotic theory, sections on the analysis of wrestling by Roland Barthes in his book Mythologies, as well as sections on football and the sacred, the Super Bowl, and the semiotics of televised baseball.
Equine Medicine and Popular Romance in Late Medieval England explores a seldom-studied trove of English veterinary manuals, illuminating how the daily care of horses they describe reshapes our understanding of equine representation in the popular romance of late medieval England. A saint removes a horse’s leg the more easily to shoe him; a wild horse transforms spur wounds into the self-healing practice of bleeding; a messenger calculates time through his horse’s body. Such are the rich and conflicted visions of horse/human connection in the period. Exploring this imagined relation, Francine McGregor reveals a cultural undercurrent in which medieval England is so reliant on equine bodies that human anxieties, desires, and very orientation in daily life are often figured through them. This book illuminates the complex and contradictory yearnings shaping medieval perceptions of the horse, the self, and the identities born of their affinity.
Often identified as one of the most genuine and enduring American film genres, the road movie has never been explored in the context of experimental filmmaking. To fill this gap, Lost Highways, Embodied Travels provides the first book-length study of over eighty unique and often obscure films and videos and situates them within the corporeal turn in American avant-garde cinema, so far mostly associated with body genres and sexually explicit films. Drawing on unpublished archival materials, the book offers a fresh take on both past and current practices of the experimental film community for scholars, students, makers and film buffs.
In these innovative essays on poetry and capitalism, collected over the last fifteen years, Christopher Nealon shines a light on the upsurge of anticapitalist poetry since the turn of the century, and develops fresh ways of thinking about how capitalist society shapes the reading and the writing of all poetry, whatever its political orientation. Breaking from half a century of postmodernist readings of poetry, and bypassing the false divide between formalist and historicist criticism, these essays chart a path toward a new Marxist poetics.
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Film festivals around the world are in the business of making experiences for audiences, elites, industry, professionals, and even future cultural workers. Cinema and the Festivalization of Capitalism explains why these non-profit organizations work as they do: by attracting people who work for free, while appealing to businesses and policymakers as a cheap means to illuminate the creative city and draw attention to film art. Ann Vogel’s unprecedented systematic sociological analysis thus provides firm evidence for the ‘festival effect’, which situates the festival as a key intermediary in cinema value chains, yet also demonstrates the impact of such event culture on cultural workers’ lives. By probing the various resources and institutional pillars ensuring that the festivalization of capitalism is here to stay, Vogel urges us to think critically about publicly displayed benevolence in the context of cinema—and beyond.
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The presidency of Donald J. Trump, has had a considerable impacts on American politics and society. One of these was his altering of the comedic mood in America, taking comedy away from many of its traditions. His presidency turned comedy into political weaponry, as comedians on the liberal side of politics turned their efforts to ridiculing Trump’s buffoonish persona, while on the conservative side, a Trump-supportive group of comedians mocked those very comedians who opposed Trump. Trump himself emerged as a comedian, performing his dark, caustic, comical routines with consummate skill at his rallies. If comedy is a pulse for a country, then it is legitimate to ask if that pulse still beating, even after Trump lost reelection in 2020. This book will address this question, examining how Trump’s presidency interrupted the historical flow of American comedic traditions, and how it spread a dark mood throughout American society.
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This groundbreaking collection of essays tells the surprising story of how the American Western has shaped world literature, fueling provocative novels and reflections about national identity, settler colonialism, and violence. Containing nineteen chapters spanning Asia, Africa, the Americas, Australia, Europe, Israel, and New Zealand, as well as a guiding, critical introduction, this book opens an exciting new chapter in the study of popular culture, literature, and globalization. Through this international lens, the literary Western casts off the categories of juvenilia and formula to come into focus as a vital and creative statement about identity, power, and history.

Contributors are: Zbigniew Białas, Manuela Borzone, Flavia Brizio-Skov, Alex Calder, Neil Campbell, Christopher Conway, Samir Dayal, Joel Deshaye, Johannes Fehrle, MaryEllen Higgins, Emily Hind, Shelly Jarenski, Rachel Leket-Mor, Warren Motte, Andrew Nette, Marek Paryż, David Rio, Steffen Wöll, and Sergei Zhuk