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Gina Gertrud Smith

, ethnicity, religious groups and subcultures. She finds it pertinent to use the word ‘transcultural’ as an umbrella term for the “transnational, diasporic, hybrid, syncretistic, postcolonial, translocal, creolized, global, or cosmopolitan.” The term ‘transcultural memory’ covers a research perspective


Michael Kearney and Setsuko Adachi

With the development of Advanced Information and Communications Systems (AICS), the dissemination of cultural constructions has become more rapid and has broadened in scope to include most regions of the world. Many of the cultural systems being transmitted globally through AICS are Euro-American: these include concepts regarding economics, consumerism, civil rights, politics, gender roles, morality, lifestyle, notions of success, fashion, and diet. When external concepts permeate traditional regional cultural systems, irreversible alterations occur. Thus, the idea of concise homogeneous cultures is antiquated. Current cultures are hybridisations. In the global paradigm of informatization, regional societal sets are transcultural. Holding that identity is constructed internally within an individual from external cultural factors, then it may be concluded that identities today are culturally hybrid. To better address the forging of identity under the forces of globalisation, the authors have developed a theoretical model of the identity formation process, termed Identity Matrixing, which accounts for the conditions of transculturality. The chapter begins with an overview of Lacan’s concepts on the structuring and production of human identity from the diverse cultural constructions of the Symbolic Order. Building upon Lacan’s work, the authors propose that while the members of a particular societal set share elements of that set’s Symbolic Order, each individual, based upon their unique experiences, has a Symbolic Order unto themselves. Here the authors introduce the concepts Vertical Matrixing and Horizontal Matrixing. This development provides insight into the individuality of identities. The Meta-Symbolic Order, which is directly related to globalisation, will then be discussed with attention being given to its transcultural properties. The final section considers Global Hodological Mapping, a concept derived from Sartre’s notion of an internalised hodological map in Being and Nothingness. It is proposed that an understanding of the aforementioned concepts will foster the creation of transcultural frameworks to better engage and traverse globalising cultural landscapes.

Transcultural Graffiti

Diasporic Writing and the Teaching of Literary Studies

Russell West-Pavlov

Transcultural Graffiti reads a range of texts – prose, poetry, drama – in several European languages as exemplars of diasporic writing. The book scrutinizes contemporary transcultural literary creation for the manner in which it gives hints about the teaching of literary studies in our postcolonial, globalizing era. Transcultural Graffiti suggest that cultural work, in particular transcultural work, assembles and collates material from various cultures in their moment of meeting. The teaching of such cultural collage in the classroom should equip students with the means to reflect upon and engage in cultural ‘bricolage’ themselves in the present day. The texts read – from Césaire’s adaptation of Shakespeare’s Tempest, via the diaspora fictions of Marica Bodrožic or David Dabydeen, to the post-9/11 poetry of New York poets – are understood as ‘graffiti’-like inscriptions, the result of fleeting encounters in a swiftly changing public world. Such texts provide impulses for a performative ‘risk’ pedagogy capable of modelling the ways in which our constitutive individual and social narratives are constructed, deconstructed and reconstructed today.

Transcultural Modernities

Narrating Africa in Europe

Edited by Elisabeth Bekers, Sissy Helff and Daniela Merolla

The swelling flows of migration from Africa towards Europe have aroused interest not only in the socio-political consequences of the migrants’ insistent appeals to ‘fortress Europe’ but also in the artistic integration of African migrants into the cultural world of Europe. While in recent years the creative output of Africans living in Europe has received attention from the media and in academia, little critical consideration has been given to African migrants’ modes of narration and the manner in which these modes give expression to, or are an expression of, their creators’ transcultural realities. Transcultural Modernities: Narrating Africa in Europe responds to this need for reflection by examining the manner in which migrants compose and negotiate their Euro-African affiliations in their narratives. The book brings together scholars in the fields of literary and art criticism, cultural studies, and anthropology for an extensive interdisciplinary exchange on the specific modes of narration displayed in Euro-African literatures, the visual arts, and cinema, as well as offering ethnographic case studies. The result is a wide range of reflections on how African artists, writers, and ordinary people living in Europe experience and explore their transcultural and/or postcolonial environments, and how their experiences and explorations in turn contribute to the construction of modern Euro-African life-worlds.

Transcultural Lyricism

Translation, Intertextuality, and the Rise of Emotion in Modern Chinese Love Fiction, 1899–1925


Jane Qian Liu

In Transcultural Lyricism: Translation, Intertextuality, and the Rise of Emotion in Modern Chinese Love Fiction, 1899–1925, Jane Qian Liu examines the profound transformation of emotional expression in Chinese fiction between the years 1899 and 1925. While modern Chinese literature is known to have absorbed narrative modes of Western literatures, it also learned radically new ways to convey emotions.

Drawn from an interdisciplinary mixture of literary, cultural and translation studies, Jane Qian Liu brings fresh insights into the study of intercultural literary interpretation and influence. She convincingly proves that Chinese writer-translators in early twentieth century were able to find new channels and modes to express emotional content through new combinations of traditional Chinese and Western techniques.

Transcultural Studies

A Journal in Interdisciplinary Research

Editor-in-Chief Slobodanka Vladiv-Glover

The editorial board of Transcultural Studies: A Journal in Interdisciplinary Research welcomes contributions into literatures and cultures in the context of new methodologies in cultural theory, aesthetics, philosophy or political thought. The principle of ‘transculture’ which the journal promotes, refers to scholarly inquiry which ideally transcends ‘national borders’ and purely regional concerns in order to speak in a generalized language of critique shared by a universal community of thinkers and academics.
All articles should contribute to the scholarly debate through original research and a theoretical grounding. Contributions from a comparative perspective will also be considered. The editorial board will plan and advertise specific thematic issues and oversee the refereeing process. Guest editors are welcome to propose topics for an issue or part issue.
Transcultural Studies was originally conceived as a platform for transcultural – post-structural – thought in Russia and Eastern Europe. Post-structuralism was introduced to the Soviet Russian academic scene in the 1980s by the late Georgian philosopher, Merab Mamardashvili. Since the journal’s inception in 2006, the scope of the journal has gradually been enlarged.
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Transcultural English Studies

Theories, Fictions, Realities


Edited by Frank Schulze-Engler and Sissy Helff

What is most strikingly new about the transcultural is its sudden ubiquity. Following in the wake of previous concepts in cultural and literary studies such as creolization, hybridity, and syncretism, and signalling a family relationship to terms such as transnationality, translocality, and transmigration, ‘transcultural’ terminology has unobtrusively but powerfully edged its way into contemporary theoretical and critical discourse. The four sections of this volume denote major areas where ‘transcultural’ questions and problematics have come to the fore: theories of culture and literature that have sought to account for the complexity of culture in a world increasingly characterized by globalization, transnationalization, and interdependence; realities of individual and collective life-worlds shaped by the ubiquity of phenomena and experiences relating to transnational connections and the blurring of cultural boundaries; fictions in literature and other media that explore these realities, negotiate the fuzzy edges of ‘ethnic’ or ‘national’ cultures, and participate in the creation of transnational public spheres as well as transcultural imaginations and memories; and, finally, pedagogy and didactics, where earlier models of teaching ‘other’ cultures are faced with the challenge of coming to terms with cultural complexity both in what is being taught and in the people it is taught to, and where ‘target cultures’ have become elusive. The idea of ‘locating’ culture and literature exclusively in the context of ethnicities or nations is rapidly losing plausibility throughout an ‘English-speaking world’ that has long since been multi- rather than monolingual. Exploring the prospects and contours of ‘Transcultural English Studies’ thus reflects a set of common challenges and predicaments that in recent years have increasingly moved centre stage not only in the New Literatures in English, but also in British and American studies.


Edited by Irene Gilsenan Nordin, Julie Hansen and Carmen Zamorano Llena

In recent decades, globalization has led to increased mobility and interconnectedness. For a growing number of people, contemporary life entails new local and transnational interdependencies which transform individual and collective allegiances. Contemporary literature often reflects these changes through its exploration of migrant experiences and transcultural identities. Calling into question traditional definitions of culture, many recent works of poetry and prose fiction go beyond the spatial boundaries of a given state, emphasizing instead the mixing and collision of languages, cultures, and identities. In doing so, they also challenge recent and contemporary discourses about cultural identities, fostering a more nuanced understanding of the complexities of identity-formation processes in diverse transcultural frameworks.
This volume analyses how traditional understandings of culture, as well as literary representations of identity constructs, can be reconceptualized from a transcultural perspective. In four thematic sections focusing on migration, cosmopolitanism, multiculturalism, and literary translingualism, the twelve essays included in this volume explore various facets of transculturality in contemporary poetry and fiction from around the world.
Contributors: Malin Lidström Brock, Katherina Dodou, Pilar Cuder–Domínguez, Stefan Helgesson, Christoph Houswitschka, Carly McLaughlin, Kristin Rebien, J.B. Rollins, Karen L. Ryan, Eric Sellin, Mats Tegmark, Carmen Zamorano Llena.


Edited by Klaus Krüger and Margit Kern

Although we tend to suggest that clear constructions of identity are granted to religious symbols under the assumption that they distinguish between self and other explicitly, perceptions of alterity in fact play a vital role in sacral forms of representation. Markers of foreignness are used in a semantics of the exceptional that characterizes the sacral. Perceptions of difference are thus capable of making visible the remoteness of sacral forms from the profane world of experience. This book, therefore, asks: What role do traits of alterity play in the sacral context? How are various concepts of the sacred synthesized in situations of transcultural translation, for instance in the context of missionary activity? How did an artifact arrive at sacral potency in various cultures, and under what conditions did semantic shifts occur?

Art/Histories in Transcultural Dynamics

Narratives, Concepts, and Practices at work, 20th and 21st Centuries


Edited by Pauline Bachmann, Melanie Klein, Tomoko Mamine and Georg Vasold

Based on the papers presented at an international conference at the Freie Universität Berlin in 2013, the publication focuses on problems and challenges of art history’s epistemic frameworks. Following four guiding themes – narrations, venues, concepts and practice – the contributions address the aspect of mobility of aesthetic objects and their contextualisation from different analytical perspectives.
The essays examine complex processes of transcultural negotiations that are set in motion by »travelling« objects, artists, ideas and institutions in order to trace and analyse historical conditions that generated specific frameworks with their respective art historical narratives and artistic production.