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Edited by Adele Parker and Stephenie Young

This study presents a unique collection of essays which focus on the relationships among form, aesthetics, and transnational women’s writing produced in recent years. The essays in this volume treat literary works from diverse cultures and geographies, concentrating on the intersections of theory and literature. This results in a wide spectrum of identities and texts – including the work of Swedish poet Aase Berg, the Indian translation market, the Chicana novel, creative non-fiction by Croatian writer Dubravka Ugrešić, and multilingual hybrid texts by Theresa Hak Kyung Cha – in order to provide a framework for an overarching theory of transnationalism as it interacts with newer paradigms of gendered identity and the new forms of literature to which they contribute. Transnationalism and Resistance offers a multifaceted approach to transnational studies and constitutes a cogent analysis of the ways in which women’s writing informs contemporary global literary production. This volume is of interest for scholars in women’s studies, literature, the social sciences, cultural studies and all other fields that take an interest in writing that addresses contemporary global issues.

The Female Crusoe

Hybridity, Trade and the Eighteenth-Century Individual

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C.M. Owen

What does the story of Robinson Crusoe have to do with understanding past and present women’s lives? The Female Crusoe: Hybridity, Trade and the Eighteenth-Century Individual investigates the possibility that Daniel Defoe’s famous work was informed by qualities attributed to trade, luxury and credit and described as feminine in the period. In this volume, Robinson Crusoe and the female castaway narratives published in its wake emerge as texts of social criticism that draw on neglected values of race and gender to challenge the dominant values of society. Such narratives worked to establish status and authority for marginalised characters and subjects who were as different, and as similar, as Defoe’s gentleman-tradesman and Wollstonecraft’s independent woman. The Female Crusoe goes on to address the twentieth-century engagement with the castaway tale, showing how three contemporary authors, in their complex and gendered negotiations of power and identity, echo, even while they challenge, the concerns of their eighteenth-century predecessors. This work will be of interest to students interested in literary engagements with individualism and women’s rights in the eighteenth and twentieth centuries.

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Edited by Ellen Carol Jones

James Joyce is located between, and constructed within, two worlds: the national and international, the political and cultural systems of colonialism and postcolonialism. Joyce's political project is to construct a postcolonial contra-modernity: to write the incommensurable differences of colonial, postcolonial, and gendered subjectivities, and, in doing so, to reorient the axis of power and knowledge. What Joyce dramatizes in his hybrid writing is the political and cultural remainder of imperial history or patriarchal canons: a remainder that resists assimilation into the totalizing narratives of modernity. Through this remainder - of both politics and the psyche - Joyce reveals how a minority culture can construct political and personal agency. Joyce: Feminism / Post / Colonialism, edited by Ellen Carol Jones, bears witness to the construction of that agency, tracing the inscription of the racial and sexual other in colonial, nationalist, and postnational representations, deciphering the history of the possible. Contributors are Gregory Castle, Gerald Doherty, Enda Duffy, James Fairhall, Peter Hitchcock, Ellen Carol Jones, Ranjana Khanna, Patrick McGee, Marilyn Reizbaum, Susan de Sola Rodstein, Carol Shloss, and David Spurr.

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Edited by Renée M. Silverman

The avant-garde has been popular for some time, but its popularity has tended to fly under the radar. This “popular avant-garde,” conceived as the meeting ground of the avant-garde and popular, avoids the divorce of art and praxis of which the avant-garde has been accused. The Popular Avant-Garde takes stock of the debates about both the “historical” (“modernist”) and posterior avant-gardes, and sets them in relation to popular culture and art forms. With a critical introduction that examines the concepts of “the avant-garde,” “the popular,” and “the popular avant-garde,” the series of essays analyzes the way in which the avant-garde employs popular genres for political purposes, as well as how the popular acquires a critical function with respect to the avant-garde. Each of the volume’s three sections considers a different aspect of the productive exchange between the avant-garde and popular: the popular avant-garde as a culturally hybrid and cross-border phenomenon; the play between the popular avant-garde and developments in media and technology; and the popular avant-garde’s upending of conventional ideas about “the people” and “the popular.” The Popular Avant-Garde takes a fresh look at the now canonical Dadaist, Futurist, and Surrealist movements from the perspectives of gender and sexuality, and cultural and critical theory, while at the same time exploring less well-known avant-garde work in literature, film, television, music, photography, dance, sculpture, and the graphic arts. This volume’s coverage of the American and Afro-American, Luso-Brazilian and Latin-American, East-European, and Scandinavian avant-gardes, in addition to the vanguards of Spain and other parts of Western Europe, will appeal to all those interested in avant-garde and popular art forms.

The woman of the crowd

Urban displacement and failed encounters in surrealist and postmodern writing

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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.

"New" Exoticisms

Changing Patterns in the Construction of Otherness

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Edited by Isabel Santaolalla

All civilisations have both feared and been fascinated by what lies beyond their limits, and have to a greater or lesser extent construed their “others” as exotics. Given that, even in its most consumerist fashion, the adoption of the exotic goes back a long way, what, then —if anything— is new in contemporary versions of exoticism? This volume attempts to offer some answers to this question. The first of its three sections serves as an extended introduction to the concept and practice of exoticism, considering the phenomenon from a number of theoretical and critical positions, explicitly examining —sometimes via significant examples— the particular attributes of exoticism. The second and third sections are more strictly text-based, relying on the analysis of specific instances of film in the former and literature in the latter, in order to tease out some specific uses of the exotic –whether ethnic, gendered, sexual or other. This volume will be of interest to scholars and students working in the fields of representation, cultural theory, postcolonialism, gender, ethnicity, sexuality, cinema and literature.

Caught Between Cultures

Women, Writing & Subjectivities

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Edited by Elizabeth Russell

The essays in this collection ( on Canada, the USA, Australia and the UK) question and discuss the issues of cross-cultural identities and the crossing of boundaries, both geographical and conceptual. All of the authors have experienced cross-culturalism directly and are conscious that positions of ‘double vision’, which allow the / to participate positively in two or more cultures, are privileges that only a few can celebrate. Most women find themselves “caught between cultures”. They become involved in a day-to-day struggle, in an attempt to negotiate identities which can affirm the self and, at the same time, strengthen the ties which unites the self with others. Theoretical issues on cross-culturalism, therefore, can either liberate or constrict the /. The essays here illustrate how women's writing negotiates this dualism through a colourful and complex weaving of words - thoughts and experiences both pleasurable and painful - into texts, quilts, rainbows. The metaphors abound. The connecting thread through their writing and, indeed, in these essays, is the concept of ‘belonging’, a theoretical/emotional composite of be-ing and longing. ‘Home’, too, assumes a variety of meanings; it is no longer a static geographical place, but many places. It is also a place elsewhere in the imagination, a mythic place of desire linked to origin.
Policies of multiculturalism can throw up more problems than they solve. In Canada, the difficulties surrounding the cross-cultural debate have given rise to a state of “messy imbroglio”. Notions of authenticity move dangerously close to essentialist identities. ‘Double vision’ is characteristic of peoples who have been uprooted and displaced, such as Australian Aboriginal writers of mixed race abducted during childhood. ‘Passing for’ black or white is full of complications, as in the case of Pauline Johnson, who passed as an authentic Indian. People with hyphenated citizenship (such as Japanese-Canadian) can be either free of national ties or trapped in subordination to the dominant culture; in these ‘visible minorities’, it is the status of being female (or coloured female) that is so often ultimately rendered invisible.
Examination of Canadian anthologies on cross-cultural writing by women reveals a crossing of boundaries of gender and genre, race and ethnicity, and, in some cases, national boundaries, in an attempt to connect with a diasporic consciousness. Cross-cultural women writers in the USA may stress experience and unique collective history, while others prefer to focus on aesthetic links and literary connections which ultimately silence difference. Journeying from the personal space of the / into the collective space of the we is exemplified in a reading of texts by June Jordan and Minnie Bruce Pratt. For these writers identity is in process. It is a painful negotiation but one which can transform knowledge into action.