Gravity’s Rainbow is an exercise in interpretive paranoia. The characters develop strategies to decipher the coded worlds they navigate in the novel, presenting the reader with different methods of textual engagement with which to discover the meanings of the novel. These different approaches to interpretation cross-pollinate intellectual inquiry with modes of physical, even erotic, engagement. Putting these textual strategies in conversation with Barthes’s The Pleasure of the Text, I argue that Gravity’s Rainbow aligns literary intercourse with sexual intercourse, making writing and reading inherently sexual practices. This essay examines the link between sex and text, in which erotics work through and around inscription, language, and sign. From Pirate’s masturbatory decoding to Slothrop’s curious map, sexuality is inextricably linked to the making of meaning. A series of counter-examples provide alternative models for intimacies that elide code (Roger and Jessica) or break the rules of Wittgenstein’s language games (the Casino Herman Goering), while continuing to complicate the relationship between the physical interiorities and protrusions of the human body and their fluid relationship with the interiorities and penetrations of literary objects. Moving from the precedents of sexual reading set early in the novel, I trace different and particularized approaches to the erotic, from Pointsman’s pedophilia to Slothrop’s toilet fantasies, which are complemented by equally specific practices of writing and interpretation. Finally, with this vocabulary of sexual and textual methodologies at hand, I consider the interpenetrative possibilities for a reader’s engagement with Gravity’s Rainbow: how we get inside it, how it gets inside us, and who exactly comes out on top.
New Historical and Literary Contexts
Edited by W.M. Verhoeven
Edited by Eric J. Sterling
, as an academic discipline is advancing methodologically and conceptually, there are limitations to the current body of work. In order to develop our understanding of individuals’ lived experiences of celebrity and fandom there has been a call to expand the discipline towards studies that focus on the
Calvin S. Brown in Memoriam
Edited by Jean-Louis Cupers and Ulrich Weisstein
Part Two bundles eleven of Professor Brown's previously uncollected articles, covering a period of nearly half a century of significant scholarly activity in the field. The selection demonstrates Brown's poignant interest in transpositions d'art exemplifying the “musicalization” of literature in the formal and structural, rather than thematic, domain as culminating in his trenchant critique of “music in poetry” as understood, somewhat naïvely, by Mallarmé and his critics, and, to a slightly lesser extent, by his translation of Josef Weinhebers' variations on Friedrich Hölderlin's ode “An die Parzen”. Just as Professor Brown's successive anatomies of melopoetic theory and practice illustrate his steadily growing sophistication and the maturing of his mind, so his Bloomington lecture “The Writing and Reading of Language and Music: Thoughts on Some Parallels Between two Artistic Media” reflects his unique ability to assemble, and organize, vast materials and comprehensive data in such a way as to reveal the underlying pattern.
Getting the Numbers Right
This note presents new demographic data on the number and location of “Suriname Maroons” in Guyane (French Guiana), as well as elsewhere in the world. After brief discussion of the methodological challenges of estimating the size of “ethnic” populations in a country whose census prohibits such counts, it shows that about 38 percent of Maroons now live in Guyane and that they form one-third of the total population. It ends by suggesting some implications of this demographic explosion.
Editor-in-Chief Damian Alan Pargas
The Journal of Global Slavery (JGS) aims to advance and promote a greater understanding of slavery and post-slavery from comparative, transregional, and/or global perspectives, as well as methodological and theoretical aspects of its study. It especially underscores the global and globalizing nature of slavery in world history.
As a practice in which human beings were held captive for an indefinite period of time, coerced into extremely dependent and exploitative power relationships, denied rights (including potentially rights over their labor, lives, and bodies), could be bought and sold, were vulnerable to forced relocation by various means, and forced to labor against their will, slavery in one form or another has existed in innumerable societies throughout history. JGS fosters a global view of slavery by integrating the latest scholarship from around the world and providing an interdisciplinary platform for scholars working on slavery in regions as diverse as ancient Rome, Pre-Colombian Mexico, Han dynasty China, the Ottoman Empire, the antebellum United States, and twenty-first-century Mali.
The journal also promotes a view of slavery as a globalizing force in the development of world civilizations. Global history focuses heavily upon the global movement of people, goods, and ideas, with a particular emphasis on processes of integration and divergence in the human experience. Slavery straddles all of these focal points, as it connected and integrated various societies through economic and power-based relationships, and simultaneously divided societies by class, race, ethnicity, and cultural group.
JGS is a peer-reviewed journal that publishes articles based on original research, book reviews, short notes and communications, and special issues. It especially invites articles that situate studies of slavery (whether historical or modern-day forms) in explicitly comparative, transregional, and/or global contexts. Themes may include (but are not limited to):
• the different and changing social, cultural, and legal meanings of slavery across time and space;
• the roles that slavery has played in the development of intersecting and interdependent relationships between societies throughout world history;
• comparative practices of enslavement (through warfare, indebtedness, trade, etc.);
• human trafficking and forced migration;
• transregional dialogues and the movement of ideas and practices of slavery and anti-slavery across space;
• slave cultures and cultural transfer;
• political, economic, and ideological causes and effects of slavery;
• religion and slavery;
• abolition, emancipation, and manumission practices from global or comparative perspectives;
• the psychological effects, memories, legacies, and representations of slave practices.
Online submission: Articles for publication in the Journal of Global Slavery can be submitted online through Editorial Manager, please click here.
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Edited by Jesús Benito and Ana María Manzanas
Emily L. Taylor
first two chapters outline her methodology, drawing heavily on Western feminist and theological sources to establish how these women writers are reimagining motherhood. Using the placental metaphor to make the case for a different model of literary influence that complicates a center-periphery colonial
familiar material. As might be expected with such delicate subject matter, however, there are tough methodological questions that remain unresolved. The Wars of Independence and subsequent U.S. occupation in Cuba marked a moment of renewal for Mazorra, founded in the mid-nineteenth century and widely