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Michelle Cliff, David Dabydeen, Opal Palmer Adisa
The two volumes on Postcolonialism and Autobiography examine the affinity of postcolonial writing to the genre of autobiography. The contributions of specialists from Northern Africa, Europe and the United States focus on two areas in which the interrelation of postcolonialism and autobiography is very prominent and fertile: the Maghreb and the Anglophone and Francophone Caribbean. The colonial background of these regions provides the stimulus for writers to launch a program for emancipation in an effort to constitute a decolonized subject in autobiographical practice. While the French volume addresses issues of the autobiographical genre in the postcolonial conditions of the Maghreb and the Caribbean with reference to France, the English volume analyzes the autobiographical writings of David Dabydeen (Guyana), Michelle Cliff, Opal Palmer Adisa, George Lamming, Wilson Harris (Jamaica), and Jamaica Kincaid (Antigua) who have maintained their cultural Caribbean origin while living in England or the United States. Critics such as William Boelhower, Leigh Gilmore, Sidonie Smith, and Gayatri Spivak reveal the many layers of different cultures (Indian, African, European, American) that are covered over by the colonial powers. The homeland, exile, the experience of migration and hybridity condition the postcolonial existence of writers and critics. The incorporation of excerpts from the writers' works is meant to show the great variety and riches of a hybrid imagination and to engage in an interactive dialogue with critics.
Urban displacement and failed encounters in surrealist and postmodern writing
Author: Daniela Daniele
This book traces the origins of the Postmodern eclectic grammar of linguistic collision back in the Surrealist poetics of ruins. Keeping in mind the images of lost direction in the big city as a central figure in the discussion of both the Modern and Postmodern aesthetics of displacement, Daniele starts comparing the epiphanic encounters of the Baudelairian flâneur in metropolitan Paris - in constant search for the traces of a lost symbolic order - with Breton's enigmatic pursuit of Nadja, the elusive sphinx in the crowd who moves in a mental territory of puzzling condensations and of ineffable objets trouvé. In his visual and written work, Marcel Duchamp was probably the first artist to envision the space of the crowd as a trans-urban, multiple dimension: a cool arena of disjunctive encounters contributing to transform the Surrealist erotic space of desire in a cooler, open field of performance.
Deeply influenced by Duchamp's hybrid aesthetics, American Postmodern writers such as Donald Barthelme and Thomas Pynchon, and the performance artist Laurie Anderson, represent metropolis as a “geographical incest”, as a plural, entropic semiosphere which transcends the notion of urban community to become the tolerant receptacle of an ethnic and discoursive multiplicity, an electronic area of linguistic collisions translatable in new fragmented and unfinished narratives. Evoking the assemblages of Abstract Expressionists, the debris of Simon Rodia “junk art”, and the hybrid language of Postmodern architecture, this neo-Surrealist narrative discourse transforms the epiphanic traces envisioned by the Baudelairian and Bretonian heroes in partial parodies, in enigmatic fragments whose ultimate source transcends the narrator's knowledge. The conceptual strategy which is constitutive of these texts implicitly asks the puzzled reader to disentangle the entropic plots, immerging him in the midst of a “linguistic wilderness,” where all opposites - fact and fiction, man and machine, man and female - enigmatically and humorously coexist.
Between Folk and Liturgy, the title of this collection, should not be understood to refer to some fixed point, some stable place between the two extremes of an illiterate and a literate culture. Rather, the title flags the wide and colourful spectrum of medieval dramatic possibility. Perhaps except one, none of the ten essays published here deal with a drama existing purely at either end of this scale. They add to our impression of the teaming fecundity and hybridism of early European drama, an impression that grows apace once we start to consider dramas situated Between Folk and Liturgy. The geographical terrain that the essays traverse ranges from the British Isles in the west to Poland in the east. The suppleness of the approaches taken here is the minimum critical requirement of anyone wanting to do justice to so complex and multifold a phenomenon as is early European drama.
Author: Linda Cummins
Rather than solid frames, some less than perfect aesthetic objects have permeable membranes which allow them to diffuse effortlessly into the everyday world. In the parallel universes of music and literature, Linda Cummins extols the poetry of such imperfection. She places Debussy's work within a tradition thriving on anti-Aristotelian principles: motley collections, crumbling ruins real or fake, monstrous hybrids, patchwork and palimpsest, hasty sketches, ellipses, truncated beginnings and endings, meandering arabesques, irrelevant digressions, auto-quotations. Sensitive to the intermittences of memory and experience and with a keen ear for ironic intrusion, Cummins draws the reader into the Western cultural past in search of the surprisingly ubiquitous aesthetic of the unfinished, negatively silhouetted against expectations of rational coherence. Theories popularized by Schlegel and embraced by the French Symbolists are only the first waypoint on an elaborately illustrated tour reaching back to Petrarch. Cummins meticulously applies the derived results to Debussy's scores and finds convincing correlations in this chiasmatic crossover.
The simultaneously tautological and oxymoronic nature of word / image relations has become a subject of massive debate in the post-modern period. This is not only because of the increasing predominance of word / image messages within our modern media-saturated culture, but also because intellectual disciplines are becoming increasingly sensitized to the essentially hybrid nature of the way we construct meaning in the world. The essays in this volume offer an exemplary insight into both aspects of this phenomenon. Focussing on both traditional and modern media (theatre, fiction, poetry, graphic art, cinema), the essays of Reading Images and Seeing Words are deeply concerned to show how it is according to signifying codes (rhetoric, poetics, metaphor), that meaning and knowledge are produced. Not the least value of this collection is the insight it gives into the multiple models of word / image interaction and the rich ambiguity of the tautological and oxymoronic relations they embody.
Saint Teresa, Lazarillo and the Early Modern City
Practising Places offers an original insight into the culture of early modern Spain in so far as the various fields explored here are seldom juxtaposed. Literary texts, urban views and paintings are analysed side by side in a hybrid cultural interpretation that is as cartographic as it is architectural, historical or literary.
This book presents a “thick” description which focuses on the first picaresque novel, Lazarillo de Tormes, the autobiographical writing of Teresa of Avila, and the urban views of Spanish towns drafted or painted by Joris Hoefnagel, Anton Van den Wyngaerde and El Greco. These works embody and challenge the sense of grandeur and subsequent notion of crisis, which inhere in the period. In this way, they simultaneously highlight and question the centralism and social control of the absolutist Habsburg rules, illustrating the claim that space is as much a social product as a social producer.
Authors: James Kraska and Raul Pedrozo
International Maritime Security Law by James Kraska and Raul Pedrozo defines an emerging interdisciplinary field of law and policy comprised of norms, legal regimes, and rules to address today's hybrid threats to the global order of the oceans. Worldwide shipping commerce, fishing fleets, pleasure craft, and coastal states are exposed to the menace of offshore terrorism, weapons of mass destruction, piracy, smuggling, robbery, marine insurgency and anti-access threats. Land-based institutions and maritime constabulary forces operate within an increasingly integrated network that blends elements of humanitarian law, human rights law, criminal law, and law of the sea, with inspection regimes, commercial enterprise, and marine safety and environmental stewardship. The new authorities fuse together a global maritime partnership among states, international organizations and commercial interests to protect the maritime commons from the most dangerous risks and hazards.
Author: George Lang
Cultural creolization, métissage, hybridity, and the in-between spaces of postcolonial thought are now fundamental terms of reference within contemporary critical thought. Entwisted Tongues explores the sociohistorical and cultural basis for writing in creole languages from a comparative framework. The rise of self-defining literatures in Atlantic creoles offers parallels with the development of national literatures elsewhere, but the status of creole languages imposes particular conditions for literary creation. After an introduction to the history of the term creole, Entwisted Tongues surveys the history of the languages which are its focus: the Crioulo of Cape Verde, Sierra Leone Krio, Surinamese Sranan, Papiamentu (spoken in the Netherlands Antilles), and the varieties of French-based Kreyol in the Caribbean. The chapter Deep Speech turns around a trope ubiquitous in creoles, one conveying the sense that their authentic registers are at the furthest remove from the high cultures with which they are in contact; Diglossic Dilemma explores the contradictions inherent in this trope. The remaining analysis explores numerous nooks and crannies of these marginal but fascinating literatures, submitting that creoles and literature in them are prima facie evidence of the human will to articulate speech and verbal art, even in the face of slavery, oppression and penury.
This collection of essays presents the multiplicity of dramatic and paradramatic activity that flourished in medieval and early modern England at the parish level. The evidence here adduced is largely from churchwardens' accounts and from the records of the ecclesiastical courts. The book contains ten articles that consider the various money making ventures undertaken by English parishes for the support of the church. The authors study subjects ranging from paradramatic activities such as rushbearing, dancing and bull and bear baiting through more hybrid and problematical events such as the king games and Robin Hood gatherings and plays, to what can be considered 'true' drama with sets, props, texts and actors. All the contributors are editors in the Records of Early English Drama project and bring to their material the insights of scholars working with original material in what are still only partially charted waters.
»Ludus« intends to introduce those interested in literature, in the performing arts, or in history to the various aspects of theatre and drama from the Middle Ages and the Early Renaissance. It publishes books on closely defined topics, mostly seen from a comparative point of view.
Interviews with Writers and Academics
As the twentieth century draws to a close, Ireland in Writing: Interviews with Writers and Academics focuses on the textual mapping of the country over the century through the creative energies and intellectual reflections of a selection of writers and educators at the tertiary level. The volume is a collection of eleven interviews held by three university teachers and a research assistant, all resident in Spain. The interviews with both male and female writers and academics, who hail from Northern Ireland and the Republic, have been conducted over the 1990s. The writers were quizzed about their own writing: how it came into being, who or what they have looked to as inspirational and how their novels, short stories, poetry and plays relate to Ireland past and present. The academics express views on their critical theories and practices, on particular areas of interest, on English and Irish in Ireland, on contemporary writing and cultural dynamics: from Friel to Telefís Éireann, passing through Field Day, the Abbey and the question of a hybrid Irish identity.