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Author: Michael Allan

In Assia Djebar’s L’amour, la fantasia, the narrator describes the linguistic resonance of her mother’s claim that her daughter “reads”—by which she implies, via Arabic, that her daughter studies. The circularity of an Arabic expression spoken in French makes the scene both descriptive and performative of the sorts of migrations, displacements and appropriations at play in this Algerian novel. In what language ought such multilingual work be read? By looking at inter and intra-lingual travels, this article emphasizes slippages between texts and readers, French and Arabic, and postcolonial and world literature. We encounter here less a lingua franca—that is, a global French or francophone framework—than we do the fundamental instability of any particular language in this internally translating text that travels from French to Arabic and ultimately into a market for readers in other languages.

In: Philological Encounters
In: Philological Encounters
Author: Michael Allan

Abstract

Lamenting that “the concept of literary study is broadened . . . so radically that it becomes identical with the whole history of humanity,” René Wellek implores scholars instead to “face the problem of ‘literariness’.” This essay considers Wellek’s formalist conception of literariness alongside what might appear its counterpoint: the historically situated understanding of adab. Just how universal is Wellek’s concept of literariness? In what ways does adab reaffirm or undermine its pertinence across textual traditions? Rather than present Wellek’s formalism and adab as opposites, this essay notes their common grounding in the pedagogical and ethical registers of the term literature—understood less as a canon of texts than as a set of practices and disciplines. Moving between the institutional foundations of modern literary study in Egypt, a footnote from Jirjī Zaydān’s literary history, and reflections on literature by the Orientalist H.A.R. Gibb, the various subsections consider how emergent definitions of literature and adab turn on assertions of how to read, respond and relate to texts. In the end, this shifted emphasis posits world literature less as an amalgam of particular textual traditions than as the disciplines and practices that inscribe how literature comes to matter.

In: Journal of Arabic Literature
Author: Michael Allan

Abstract

Michael Allan and Gauri Viswanathan discuss connections among philology, literary history, and religion, drawing from writers such as Edward Said, B.R. Ambedkar, Zora Neale Hurston, Louis Massignon, and Kumud Pawde. The conversation was initially conducted via Zoom on September 2, 2020, and collaboratively edited for readability.

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In: Philological Encounters
Conflict Prevention, Crisis Management and Peaceful Settlement of Disputes

A new species of the diverse and complicated augochlorine bee genus Neocorynura Schrottky (Augochlorini: Augochlorina) is described and figured. Neocorynura faceta sp. n. is described and figured from the Andes of Bolivia and is most similar to the more northern Andean species, N. papallactensis Engel from Ecuador and N. iguaquensis Smith-Pardo & Gonzalez from Colombia, but can be distinguished on the basis of integumental sculpturing and coloration. A preliminary key to the species of Neocorynura known to occur in Bolivia is provided.

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In: Tijdschrift voor Entomologie

We determined the energy budget of the Arabian babbler (Turdoides squamiceps; Timaliidae), including the efficiency of energy use, using published data on resting metabolic rate (RMR), existence energy (EE), and field metabolic rate (FMR) of this desert passerine. Resting metabolic rate of the babblers was 0.65 kJ g-1 d-1 and EE was 1.10 kJ g-1 d-1. Therefore, RMR was approximately 59% of existence energy, and the efficiency of utilization of metabolizable energy for maintenance was 0.59. The heat increment of feeding (HIF) for maintenance for a diet of insects was 0.41, that is, 41% of the metabolizable energy consumed was used for food utilization. FMRs in summer and winter were similar and averaged 1.65 kJ g-1 d-1,breeding was 2.02 kJ g-1 d-1. The difference between either summer or winter FMR and EE in non-breeding babblers, 0.55 kJ g-1 d-1, was due to activity, mainly foraging, and may have included thermoregulatory costs in free-living birds. Breeding babblers required 0.37 kJ g-1 d-1 more than non-breeding birds; HIF for the increased energy intake was 19% of total energy expenditure. In general, energy expenditure of Arabian babblers was similar to that of other desert bird species but lower than that of non-desert species.

In: Israel Journal of Ecology and Evolution