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Waldemar Zacharasiewicz

Imagology Revisited brings together in one volume essays written over a forty-year period on the perception and representation of foreign countries and peoples, the “other”.
The book traces the emergence of national and ethnic stereotypes in the early modern age and studies their evolution and multiple functions in a wide range of texts from travelogues and diaries to novels, plays and poetry, produced between the 16th and 20th centuries.
The collection of essays, many of which are appearing in English for the first time, examines such phenomena as the mutual perception and misperception of Europeans and (North) Americans and the role of the theory of climate as a justification for stereotyped representations. It analyzes such national images as the hetero-stereotypes of Germans and Austrians in North American texts, and illuminates the depiction of the English abroad, as well as that of the Scots, the Jews and Italians in American literature.
The book is of interest to comparatists, to practitioners of cultural studies and cultural history, to scholars in the fields of ethnic and inter-cultural German studies and especially to Anglicists and Americanists.

Series:

Roland A. Champagne

Reading a text is an ethical activity for Emmanuel Levinas. His moral philosophy considers written texts to be natural places to discover relations of responsibility in Western philosophical systems which are marked by extreme violence and totalizing hatred. While ethics is understood to mean a relationship with the other and reading is the appropriation of the other to the self, readings according to Levinas naturally entail relationships with the other. Levinas's own writings are often frought with the struggle between his own maleness, the concerns of feminism, and the Judaism that marks his contributions to the debates of the Talmud. This book uses male feminism as its perspective in presenting the applications of Levinas's ethical vision to texts whose readings have presented moral dilemmas for women readers. Levinas's philosophical theories can provide keys to unlock the difficulties of these texts whose readings will provide models of reading as ethical acts beginning with the ethical contract in Song of Songs where the assumption of a woman writer begins the elaboration of issues that sets a male reader as her other. From the reader's vantage point of seeing the self as other, other issues of male feminism become increasingly poignant, ranging from the solicitude of listening to Céline (Chapter 2), the responsibility for noise in Nizan (Chapter 3), the asymmetrical pattern of face-to-face relationships in Maupassant (Chapter 4), the sovereignty of laughter in Bataille and Zola (Chapter 5), the call of the other in Italo Svevo (Chapter 6), the Woman as Other in Breton (Chapter 7), the ethical self in Drieu la Rochelle (Chapter 8), the response to Hannah Arendt (Chapter 9), and the vulnerability of Bernard-Henri Lévy (Chapter 10). The male feminist reader is thus the incarnation of the struggle at the core of the issues outlined by Levinas for the act of reading as an ethical endeavor.

Apollinaire on the Edge

Modern Art, Popular Culture, and the Avant-Garde

Series:

Willard Bohn

The title of the present study refers to the fact that Apollinaire consistently worked at the cutting edge of modern aesthetics. The volume seeks to rehabilitate four experimental genres in particular that have received relatively little attention. The first chapter examines a charming artist’s book entitled The Bestiary, which features illustrations by Raoul Dufy. The second is concerned with a group of poems that celebrate ordinary, everyday life. The next chapter considers Apollinaire’s little-known debt to children’s rhymes. The final chapter discusses an avant-garde drama that was destined to play a key role in the evolution of modern French theater. This book will be of interest to anyone interested in avant-garde aesthetics. It will appeal not only to scholars of twentieth-century poetry but also to devotees of modern art and modern theater.

Darwin Becomes Art

Aesthetic Vision in the Wake of Darwin: 1870–1920

Series:

Hugh Ridley

This book analyses Darwin’s influence on art and the effect of his science on experiences of beauty. The first chapter discusses Darwin’s great forerunner, Alexander von Humboldt, and his contribution to thinking about the relationship between science and beauty. The second examines the public reception of Darwin in Germany, focusing on the German Naturalists and the important scientific controversies which Darwin’s idea provoked. It shows the political use of science (Häckel and Virchow) and foreshadows present-day debates between Darwinism and Creationism, science and an idealized view of nature.
Against this background the book shows the effect of Darwin on three important fields: the perception of landscape in major writers (Zola, Lawrence, Jacobsen, Benn and Brecht) before 1920; the portrayal of wild life, as revealed in bird-painting; and the understanding of the relationship between the human body and character.
The book brings together for the first time Darwin’s The Expression of Emotion with the work of major European novelists (Eliot, Gutzkow and Freytag), focusing on the place of the older understandings contained in physiognomy, which Darwin challenged, on the portrayal of ethnicity, and on debates about acting, including for the young Brecht.

Series:

Daniel Barnett

This book offers sweeping and cogent arguments as to why analytic philosophers should take experimental cinema seriously as a medium for illuminating mechanisms of meaning in language. Using the analogy of the movie projector, Barnett deconstructs all communication acts into functions of interval, repetition and context. He describes how Wittgenstein’s concepts of family resemblance and language games provide a dynamic perspective on the analysis of acts of reference. He then develops a hyper-simplified formula of movement as meaning to discuss, with true equivalence, the process of reference as it occurs in natural language, technical language, poetic language, painting, photography, music, and of course, cinema. Barnett then applies his analytic technique to an original perspective on cine-poetics based on Paul Valery’s concept of omnivalence, and to a projection of how this style of analysis, derived from analog cinema, can help us clarify our view of the digital mediasphere and its relation to consciousness.
Informed by the philosophy of Quine, Dennett, Merleau-Ponty as well as the later work of Wittgenstein, among others, he uses the film work of Stan Brakhage, Tony Conrad, A.K. Dewdney, Nathaniel Dorsky, Ken Jacobs, Owen Land, Saul Levine, Gregory Markopoulos Michael Snow, and the poetry of Basho, John Cage, John Cayley and Paul Valery to illustrate the power of his unique perspective on meaning.