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  • Criticism & Theory x

Guo-Juin Hong

Instead of attempting to provide a survey of Taiwan documentary, this article focuses on a few critical moments in its long and uneven history and proposes a potentially productive site for understanding its formal manifestations of representational politics. By honing in on the uses of sounds and words, I show that the principle of a unitary voice—voice understood both as the utterances of sound and the politico-cultural meaning of such utterances—organizes the earlier periods of the colonial and authoritarian rules and shapes later iterations of and formal reactions to them. Be it voice-over narration or captions and inter-titles, this article provides a historiographical lens through which the politics of representation in Taiwan documentary may be rethought. Furthermore, this article takes documentary not merely as a genre of non-fiction filmmaking. Rather, it insists on documentary as a mode, and indeed modes, of representation that do not belong exclusively to the non-fiction. Notions of “documentability” are considered together with the corollary tendency to “fictionalize” in cinema, fiction and non-fiction. Taiwan, with its complex histories in general and the specific context within which the polyglossiac practices of New Taiwan Documentary have blossomed in recent decades in particular, is a productive site to investigate the questions of “sound” in cinematic form and “voice” in representational politics.


Edited by Diana Brydon, Peter Forsgren and Gonlüg Fur

Brydon, Forsgren, and Fur’s Concurrent Imaginaries, Postcolonial Worlds demonstrates the value of reading for concurrences in situating discussions of archives, voices, and history in colonial and postcolonial contexts. Starting with the premise that our pluriversal world is constructed from concurrent imaginaries yet the role of concurrences has seldom been examined, the collection brings together case studies that confirm the productivity of reading, looking, and listening for concurrences across established boundaries of disciplinary or geopolitical engagement. Contributors working in art history, sociology, literary, and historical studies bring examples of Nordic colonialism together with analyses of colonial practices worldwide. The collection invites uptake of the study of concurrences within the humanities and in interdisciplinary fields such as postcolonial, cultural, and globalization studies.


Edited by Jorge Sacido-Romero and Sylvia Mieszkowski

Sound Effects combines literary criticism and psychoanalytic theory in eleven original articles which explore the potential of the object voice as an analytic tool to approach fiction. Alongside the gaze, the voice is Jacques Lacan’s original addition to the set of partial objects of classical psychoanalysis, and has only recently been theorised by Mladen Dolar in A Voice and Nothing More (2006). With notable exceptions like Garrett Stewart’s Reading Voices (1990), the sonorous element in fiction has received little scholarly attention in comparison with poetry and drama. Sound Effects is a contribution to the burgeoning field of sound studies, and sets out to fill this gap through selective readings of English and American fiction of the last two hundred years.

Contributors: Fred Botting, Natalja Chestopalova, Mladen Dolar, Matt Foley, Alex Hope, Phillip Mahoney, Sylvia Mieszkowski, Jorge Sacido-Romero, Marcin Stawiarski, Garrett Stewart, Peter Weise, and Bruce Wyse.

Afrikaans Literature: Recollection, Redefinition, Restitution

Papers held at the 7th Conference on South African Literature at the Protestant Academy, Bad Boll


Edited by Robert Kriger and Ethel Kriger

Material Difference

Modernism and the Allegories of Discourse


William D. Melaney

Material Difference: Modernism and the Allegories of Discourse argues that deconstruction can be employed in conjunction with the historically-oriented approach to cultural experience that is favored by Critical Theory. The two discourses that inform this comparative study situate Modernism between evolving traditions that begin with Hegel and Nietzsche, leading on to Adorno’s commitment to philosophical aesthetics and Derrida’s concern for writing ( écriture). Interrelated discussions of eight major authors, working in four different languages, are presented to show how allegorical Modernism foreshadows the possibility of cultural history. Joyce, Kafka, Malraux, Rilke, and Stevens are among the authors discussed in this book. The notion of material difference allows literature to be redefined in semiotic terms and demonstrates how the allegorical imagination mediates between art and time.


Edited by Wim van Mierlo

In the last decades, the emphasis in textual scholarship has moved onto creation, production, process, collaboration; onto the material manifestations of a work; onto multiple rather than single versions; onto reception and book history. Textual scholarship now includes not only textual editing, but any form of scholarship that looks at the materiality of text, of writing, of reading, and of the book.
The essays in this collection explore many questions, about methodology and theory, arising from this widening scope of textual scholarship. The range of texts discussed, from Sanskrit epic via Medieval Latin commentary through English and Scottish Ballads to the plays of Samuel Beckett and the stories of Guimarães Rosa, testifies to the vigour of the discipline. The range of texts is matched by a range of approach: from theoretical discussion of how text ‘happens’, to analysis of issues of book design and censorship, the connections between literary and textual studies, exploration of the links between reception and commodification in George Eliot, and between information theory and paratext. Through this diversity of subject and approach, a common theme emerges: the need to look further for common ground from which to continue the debate from a comparative perspective.


Editors Place-ing the Prison Officer

Voices from Exile

Essays in Memory of Hamish Ritchie


Edited by Ian Wallace

The sixteen essays in this volume are a tribute to Hamish Ritchie’s deep interest in exile as a literary and historical phenomenon. The first eight focus on the British and Irish context, including studies of Jürgen Kuczynski and his family, Martin Miller, Lilly Kann, Hermann Sinsheimer, Albin Stuebs, Ludwig Hopf and Paul Bondy, as well as contributions on the Association of Jewish Refugees and the exile experience as reflected in Klaus Mann’s Der Vulkan. The following four contributions widen the discussion to encompass Germany, the Netherlands, Austria and Yugoslavia by focusing on the diaries of Anne Frank and Etty Hillesum, the early poetry of Bertolt Brecht, and works by Vladimir Vertlib, Aleksandar Ajzinberg, and David Albahari. The historical dimension is deepened with contributions on William Joyce, Joseph Jonas, the marginalisation of the mass emigration of the Jews within German memory, and the ‘exile’ of princesses for whom until recent times marriage often meant a life far from home.