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Volume 13, February
 
 

Humanities, Volume 13, Issue 2 (April 2024) – 25 articles

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16 pages, 2451 KiB  
Article
Dorsal Practices—Towards a Back-Oriented Being-in-the-World
by Katrina Brown and Emma Cocker
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020063 - 07 Apr 2024
Viewed by 317
Abstract
Dorsal Practices is a process-based, interdisciplinary artistic collaboration between choreographer Katrina Brown and writer–artist Emma Cocker. This research enquiry explores the notion of dorsality and the cultivation of a back-oriented awareness in relation to how we as sentient bodies orientate to the self, [...] Read more.
Dorsal Practices is a process-based, interdisciplinary artistic collaboration between choreographer Katrina Brown and writer–artist Emma Cocker. This research enquiry explores the notion of dorsality and the cultivation of a back-oriented awareness in relation to how we as sentient bodies orientate to the self, others (human, more-than-human), and interconnected world. Since 2021, Dorsal Practices has unfolded through the interrelation of three fields of experimental, embodied research practice: movement-based practices, conversation practices, and experimental reading practices. Dorsal Practices explores how the tilt or inclination towards dorsal (dis)orientation might enable new modes of thinking–perceiving and being–with, and more connected, sustainable ways of living and aliveness based on the reciprocal, entangled relationship between self/environment. We ask: How does the cultivation of a back-oriented awareness and attitude shape and inform our embodied, affective, and relational experience of being-in-the-world? Rather than a mode of withdrawal, of turning one’s back, how might a back-leaning orientation support an open, receptive ethics of relation? Central to this enquiry is an attempt to explore how different linguistic practices might be developed in fidelity to the embodied experiences of dorsality: how the experiences of listening, languaging, even thinking, might be shaped differently through this embodied tilt of awareness and attention towards the back. Full article
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16 pages, 245 KiB  
Article
Sounding Grief in Henry Dumas’s “Echo Tree”
by Timothy Pantoja
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020062 - 07 Apr 2024
Viewed by 289
Abstract
“Sounding Grief in Henry Dumas’s ‘Echo Tree’” engages Dumas’s experimental short story about two youths discussing how to speak to the dead while on a Southern hillside at dusk. This article studies how this short story meditates on how grief affects our engagement [...] Read more.
“Sounding Grief in Henry Dumas’s ‘Echo Tree’” engages Dumas’s experimental short story about two youths discussing how to speak to the dead while on a Southern hillside at dusk. This article studies how this short story meditates on how grief affects our engagement with and reliance upon voiced languages to express a desire for communion that persists beyond death. “Echo Tree”, the article argues, reveals how openness to grief, and the subsequent desire for communication with the dead, improves the imaginative capacity needed for empathetic alignment among the living. In its presentation of the psychological and imaginative difficulties of performing a call-and-response with the dead, “Echo Tree” also analogizes how a reader engages in an act of call-and-response with a muted acousmatic voice from the printed page. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sound Studies in African American Literature and Culture)
16 pages, 307 KiB  
Article
‘I Don’t Want to Be Other. I Want to Be Normal’: Mental Boundaries and the Polish Experience in the UK in Agnieszka Dale’s Fox Season and Other Short Stories
by Isabel María Andrés-Cuevas
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020061 - 06 Apr 2024
Viewed by 505
Abstract
Borders and frontiers are often problematized in Agnieszka Dale’s Fox Season and Other Short Stories (2017), where mental borders seem to be more divisive than spatial boundaries. Many of these narratives feature Polish immigrants in Britain who struggle with their displaced condition in [...] Read more.
Borders and frontiers are often problematized in Agnieszka Dale’s Fox Season and Other Short Stories (2017), where mental borders seem to be more divisive than spatial boundaries. Many of these narratives feature Polish immigrants in Britain who struggle with their displaced condition in various ways. As some of the stories in the collection reveal, the scenario of post-Brexit Britain compromises conviviality amongst different groups, including the Polish community. Special attention is placed upon how several narratives in the volume underscore the prevalence in British society of Polish stereotypes as the crystallisation of the still widespread animosity against non-Europeans. Homi Bhabha’s notions regarding the formation and dynamics of stereotypes will be helpful in understanding the mechanisms beneath such constructions. Likewise, some of the major tenets of social theory, as well as Edward Said’s notion of ‘Orientalism’, will contribute to shedding light upon this resentment towards the Polish minority, occasionally adopted too by already established immigrants against their former compatriots. This article will ultimately intend to draw attention to the cautionary nature of Dale’s collection as a call for harmony and the appreciation of difference among nations, thus preventing the gloomy perspectives the dystopian futures of some of these stories forecast upon Europe. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Border Politics & Refugee Narratives in Contemporary Literature)
9 pages, 196 KiB  
Article
“Until It Suddenly Isn’t”: Two Novels on Life after a Pandemic Disaster
by Åsa Nilsson Skåve
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020060 - 04 Apr 2024
Viewed by 268
Abstract
This article investigates two recent novels that deal with environmental and pandemic disasters: Severance (2018) by Ling Ma and Under the Blue (2022) by Oana Aristide. The analysis is based on ecocritical and posthumanist perspectives and on a division made by Chakrabarty (Planetary [...] Read more.
This article investigates two recent novels that deal with environmental and pandemic disasters: Severance (2018) by Ling Ma and Under the Blue (2022) by Oana Aristide. The analysis is based on ecocritical and posthumanist perspectives and on a division made by Chakrabarty (Planetary Crises and the Difficulty of Being Modern), in two different understandings of the globe: one connected to the planetary-focused discourse on global warming and the other on human-centered globalization. The clashes of these discourses are highlighted in the novels. They illustrate a process of understanding that humans are not separate from the natural world, through the disease itself and through the sudden need to survive without modern healthcare and all the comfort we are used to being able to buy. The gradual insight of the depicted characters, and perhaps also the readers of the novels, is that we live on a planet of extreme complexity and interdependence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue World Literature in the Times of Pandemics and Plagues)
28 pages, 395 KiB  
Article
Dante’s Political Eschatology: Resurrecting the Social Body in Paradiso 14
by Filippo Gianferrari
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020059 - 02 Apr 2024
Viewed by 322
Abstract
This article investigates Dante’s engagement with one of the key and most controversial academic questions of the late Middle Ages: the beatific vision after the general resurrection. This essay focuses on Paradiso 14, where the character of King Solomon explains that the souls’ [...] Read more.
This article investigates Dante’s engagement with one of the key and most controversial academic questions of the late Middle Ages: the beatific vision after the general resurrection. This essay focuses on Paradiso 14, where the character of King Solomon explains that the souls’ vision of God will increase after reuniting with their resurrected bodies. After briefly reconstructing the theological debate engaged by Dante’s treatment of the general resurrection, and discussing the prevailing tendencies in the scholarship on Paradiso 14 and the body–soul relationship in the Commedia, this essay provides a new interpretation of this canto from a social and political perspective. It argues that in Dante’s eschatological vision, the resurrected body appears to be essential for the ultimate fulfillment of humanity’s social nature. Full article
12 pages, 245 KiB  
Article
A Snapshot of Ongoing Transculturalism in Britain: Refugee NGO Website Personal Narratives and Global Border Crossing—A Case Study
by Eduardo De Gregorio-Godeo
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020058 - 28 Mar 2024
Viewed by 455
Abstract
With a focus on refugees’ written personal narratives on refugee NGO websites, this paper examines ongoing transculturalism in Britain and its interplay with globalization and current international migration. Conceiving such personal narratives as cultural texts pertaining to refugee narratives as a broad genre [...] Read more.
With a focus on refugees’ written personal narratives on refugee NGO websites, this paper examines ongoing transculturalism in Britain and its interplay with globalization and current international migration. Conceiving such personal narratives as cultural texts pertaining to refugee narratives as a broad genre that encompasses different storytelling modalities, those personal stories on refugee NGO websites are explored from a cultural studies perspective. CDA is employed as a methodology for this cultural studies-oriented piece. A qualitatively oriented case study is accordingly presented based on the detailed examination of an example of such written narratives on the website of one such refugee NGO in the UK so as to instantiate and contribute to disentangling the articulation of this characteristic form of ongoing transculturalism. Special emphasis is laid on the discursive construction of refugees’ transcultural identities in such narratives through their participation in those global border-crossing processes characteristic of the contemporary landscape. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Border Politics & Refugee Narratives in Contemporary Literature)
15 pages, 293 KiB  
Article
A Place to Meet: Community and Companionship in the Magazine of the London School of Medicine for Women, 1895–1905
by Mary Chapman
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020057 - 27 Mar 2024
Viewed by 384
Abstract
At the turn of the twentieth century, British women were able to qualify as medical doctors and enter professional practice for the first time. However, they often remained excluded from the specialist journals which were crucial for knowledge exchange during this period. As [...] Read more.
At the turn of the twentieth century, British women were able to qualify as medical doctors and enter professional practice for the first time. However, they often remained excluded from the specialist journals which were crucial for knowledge exchange during this period. As a result, they formed several of their own periodicals, including the Magazine of the London School of Medicine for Women (1895–1947), which this paper discusses. Significantly, the Magazine not only provided female doctors with the opportunity for intellectual communication, but social interaction too. This paper will explore how the periodical regularly published community-building content, which emphasised friendship as a key component of female doctors’ relationships. The Magazine encouraged the sharing of humour, stories, and intimate news which both articulated and generated companionship amongst subscribers. Through this content, the Magazine wove professional connections into personal bonds, telling a story of medical sisterhood and offering a welcoming textual meeting place to a disparate network of female doctors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Literature and Medicine)
8 pages, 5213 KiB  
Editorial
Refugees and Representation: Introduction—The Mimesis of Diaspora
by Adam Zachary Newton
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020056 - 22 Mar 2024
Viewed by 528
Abstract
In keeping with the title we have chosen for this follow-up volume to the Special Issue “Ethics and Literary Practice I”, we frame our introduction and summary of the essays collected here with a brief archaeology of modern literary realism at its conjoined [...] Read more.
In keeping with the title we have chosen for this follow-up volume to the Special Issue “Ethics and Literary Practice I”, we frame our introduction and summary of the essays collected here with a brief archaeology of modern literary realism at its conjoined genesis in classical Greece and the ancient Near East; such contextualization serves as a prescient backdrop for the varied focus, across a compilation of thirteen articles, on refugees and their representation [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ethics and Literary Practice II: Refugees and Representation)
12 pages, 257 KiB  
Article
Mário Filho’s O Negro No Futebol Brasileiro (The Black Man in Brazilian Soccer) under and beyond the Shadow of Gilberto Freyre
by Mario Higa
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 55; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020055 - 20 Mar 2024
Viewed by 815
Abstract
This article aims to provide the reader with a brief introduction to Mário Filho’s O negro no futebol brasileiro (The Black Man in Brazilian Soccer). While emphasizing the importance of this classic book, I will discuss a few of its central [...] Read more.
This article aims to provide the reader with a brief introduction to Mário Filho’s O negro no futebol brasileiro (The Black Man in Brazilian Soccer). While emphasizing the importance of this classic book, I will discuss a few of its central ideas, the context in which these ideas were produced, and how they came to shape the perception of sports and race in Brazil. Furthermore, in the last sections of this article, I will examine how issues of genre classification regarding Mário Filho’s book have affected the way it has been read and interpreted over the years. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Decolonization in Lusophone Literature)
12 pages, 251 KiB  
Article
‘[M]en’s Dwellings Were Thin Shells’: Uncertain Interiors and Domestic Violence in Ford Madox Ford’s War Writing
by Max Saunders
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 54; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020054 - 18 Mar 2024
Viewed by 564
Abstract
The standard image of First World War soldiers is of men in open trenches: waiting to attack or be attacked; walking, sitting, sleeping, dead. Ford’s Parade’s End includes such scenes. But it is a different kind of image which predominates in his war [...] Read more.
The standard image of First World War soldiers is of men in open trenches: waiting to attack or be attacked; walking, sitting, sleeping, dead. Ford’s Parade’s End includes such scenes. But it is a different kind of image which predominates in his war writings and often produces its most memorable passages: images of houses or house-like shelters. The mind seeks protection in such structures; but they offer little security against the destructiveness outside, against the bombardments, gas, shrapnel, bullets. Ford wrote that the experience of war revealed: ‘men’s dwellings were thin shells that could be crushed as walnuts are crushed. … all things that lived and moved and had volition and life might at any moment be resolved into a scarlet viscosity seeping into the earth of torn fields […]’. This realisation works in two ways. The soldier’s sense of vulnerability provokes fantasies of home, solidity, sanctuary, while for the returnee soldier, domestic architecture summons war-visions of its own annihilation: ‘it had been revealed to you’, adds Ford, ‘that beneath Ordered Life itself was stretched, the merest film with, beneath it, the abysses of Chaos’. It is now customary to read war literature through trauma theory. Building on analyses of Ford’s use of repression, but drawing instead on object relations theory, I argue that Ford’s houses of war are not screen memories but images of the failure of repression to screen off devastating experiences. The abysses of Chaos can be seen through the screen or projected upon it. Attending to Ford’s handling of this theme enables a new reading of his war writing and a new case for its coherence. The essay will connect the opening of No More Parades (in a hut, during a bombardment) with the war poem ‘The Old Houses of Flanders’; the postwar poem A House; the memoir It Was the Nightingale (quoted above); and the otherwise puzzling, fictionalised memoir No Enemy, structured in terms of ‘Four Landscapes’ and ‘Certain Interiors’. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ford Madox Ford's War Writing)
12 pages, 277 KiB  
Article
Sibling Rivalry, (Dis)Inheritance and Politics in Aphra Behn’s The Younger Brother and Susanna Centlivre’s The Artifice
by Margarete Rubik
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 53; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020053 - 15 Mar 2024
Viewed by 581
Abstract
Behn and Centlivre used their comedies about the rivalry between an elder and a younger brother concerning an inheritance to make a political statement. Primogeniture was customary in early-modern England, and if an estate was entailed (rather than held in fee simple), it [...] Read more.
Behn and Centlivre used their comedies about the rivalry between an elder and a younger brother concerning an inheritance to make a political statement. Primogeniture was customary in early-modern England, and if an estate was entailed (rather than held in fee simple), it was difficult, though not impossible, to will it away to another person. The reasons meriting disinheritance were widely discussed, but in the two plays, the Tory fathers disinherit their Whig elder sons for political reasons. As The Younger Brother was staged posthumously and altered by Charles Gildon, it is arguable what Behn’s manuscript looked like, but there are indications that the elder brother was meant to be a downright republican and that Behn saw to it that the estate would go to the Tory younger brother, whose political stance she shared. In The Artifice, the father disinherits his upright elder son because he punished a Jacobite clergyman (whom the Whigs would have considered traitorous), but Centlivre—a zealous Whig herself—engineered an ending that reinstates the elder brother but also provides the younger with a comfortable income. Both dramatists also dealt with the inheritance prospects of women and the power of disposal they have over their portions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Literature in the Humanities)
18 pages, 282 KiB  
Article
Bloody Petticoats: Performative Monstrosity of the Female Slayer in Seth Grahame-Smith’s Pride and Prejudice and Zombies
by Michelle L. Rushefsky
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020052 - 14 Mar 2024
Viewed by 891
Abstract
In 2009, Seth Grahame-Smith published Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, sparking a subgenre that situates itself within multiple genres. I draw from the rebellious nature of nineteenth-century proto-feminists who tried to reclaim the female monster as an initial methodology to analyze Grahame-Smith’s [...] Read more.
In 2009, Seth Grahame-Smith published Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, sparking a subgenre that situates itself within multiple genres. I draw from the rebellious nature of nineteenth-century proto-feminists who tried to reclaim the female monster as an initial methodology to analyze Grahame-Smith’s Elizabeth Bennet. I argue that the (white) women in this horror rewriting inadvertently become the oppressors alongside contextualized zombie theory. This article also explores Grahame-Smith’s Charlotte Lucas as a complex female monster, as she is bitten and turned into a zombie, which reflects in part Jane Austen’s Charlotte’s social status and (potential) spinsterdom. It is the mythos of the zombie that makes Grahame-Smith’s Elizabeth Bennet’s feminist subversion less remarkable. And it is Charlotte’s embodiment of both the rhetorical and the religio-mythic monster that merges two narratives: the Americanized appropriated zombie and the oppressed woman. Grahame-Smith’s characters try to embody the resistance of twenty-first feminist sensibilities but fail due to the racial undertones of the zombie tangentially present in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Re-imagining Classical Monsters)
14 pages, 269 KiB  
Article
Antiracism and Black Self-Defense in the Face of (Juridical) Catastrophe
by Adam Burgos and Khalil Saucier
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020051 - 13 Mar 2024
Viewed by 586
Abstract
In this paper we analyze the relationship between antiracism and black self-defense. We draw a distinction between liberal and political black self-defense and argue that antiracism can at most sanction a juridical and individualistic notion of self-defense rather than a communal one. We [...] Read more.
In this paper we analyze the relationship between antiracism and black self-defense. We draw a distinction between liberal and political black self-defense and argue that antiracism can at most sanction a juridical and individualistic notion of self-defense rather than a communal one. We argue that any and all theoretical conceptions of contestation, resistance, or revolution need to seriously grapple with the necessity of theorizing black self-defense. In doing so, we thematize antiblack violence through accounts of self-defense given by black radicals. Together, these arguments outline a perpetual conditional threat of violence against any and all black freedom projects, which in turn justifies enunciative black counterviolence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Antiracism)
24 pages, 378 KiB  
Article
Against Exceptionalism
by Zahi Zalloua
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020050 - 12 Mar 2024
Viewed by 756
Abstract
In this article, I question the logic informing paradigms of trauma that ontologize and essentialize events, such as the Holocaust and chattel slavery, making them unique, incomparable exceptions that encapsulate or inaugurate the violence of Western modernity, while standing outside and above the [...] Read more.
In this article, I question the logic informing paradigms of trauma that ontologize and essentialize events, such as the Holocaust and chattel slavery, making them unique, incomparable exceptions that encapsulate or inaugurate the violence of Western modernity, while standing outside and above the order they found. In an effort to avoid the urge to rank that follows almost effortlessly from such ontologization, I mobilize the appeal to the universal undergirding the works of Slavoj Žižek and that of Frantz Fanon. Both Fanon and Žižek read racial trauma and racist violence in light of the eviscerating ontological effects of an imperialist capitalism that divides the world and segregates its peoples. Rather than opting for identity politics, however, these thinkers argue against ontologizing and exceptionalizing victims, in favor of elaborating a politics based on their concrete universality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Antiracism)
14 pages, 263 KiB  
Article
The Ordinary Looks behind the Horrifying Screams: The Secrecies of Border Spirits in 20th Century Finnish Belief Narratives
by Kari Korolainen
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 49; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020049 - 12 Mar 2024
Viewed by 743
Abstract
This paper discusses the secrecies of border spirits within 20th century Finnish belief narratives. The aim is to explore how and in which contexts the imaginary aspects of border spirit narratives link to the idea of the “power of storytelling”. The following study [...] Read more.
This paper discusses the secrecies of border spirits within 20th century Finnish belief narratives. The aim is to explore how and in which contexts the imaginary aspects of border spirit narratives link to the idea of the “power of storytelling”. The following study touches on areas such as the suspension of the fantasy and sociopolitical aspects within the narratives. The folklore materials focus mainly on the Finnish heartland and partly on the national borders. Especially, narrative research methods were used to analyse what is heard and seen of the border spirits and what contexts these narratives involve. Moreover, the results touch on the dynamics of belief narratives without limiting them to the territorial aspects of borders. Hence, the study also explores interpretative bridges between folklore and border studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Seen and Unseen: The Folklore of Secrecy)
13 pages, 505 KiB  
Article
The Pragmatics, Poetics, and Ethics of Pronouns in Ford Madox Ford’s War Prose
by Isabelle Brasme
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 48; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020048 - 08 Mar 2024
Viewed by 655
Abstract
This essay adopts a stylistic approach to delineate the various—and varying—pragmatic effects inherent in the use and interactions of pronouns in Ford’s war prose. Ford’s singular use of pronouns is shown to be instrumental in his practice of literary impressionism. In particular, the [...] Read more.
This essay adopts a stylistic approach to delineate the various—and varying—pragmatic effects inherent in the use and interactions of pronouns in Ford’s war prose. Ford’s singular use of pronouns is shown to be instrumental in his practice of literary impressionism. In particular, the omnipresent second person is granted a variety of referents that coexist along a “continuum of reference” (as defined by Bettina Kluge), from a “you” that is speaker-oriented to one that is addressee-oriented. Sorlin’s intersection of Kluge’s continuum with a gradient from personalisation to generalisation (2022) is illuminating when examining the manifold significance of Ford’s use of the second person, as it brings to light its ethical impact. Ford’s war essays shift from the general to the particular and from the collective to the individual in a manner that opposes propaganda rhetorics. Furthermore, the gradient established by Sandrine Sorlin to account for the pragmatic effect of “you” also proves remarkably useful when applied to the pronoun “one”. Scrutinising the interplay between these various pronouns allows us to investigate the multifarious relationships that Ford establishes in his war essays between the persona, the reader, those he often called “my men”, and the collective ethos of wartime Britain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ford Madox Ford's War Writing)
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13 pages, 227 KiB  
Article
Reframing the Refugee: Jenny Erpenbeck’s Compassionate Politics
by Kristian Shaw
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 47; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020047 - 07 Mar 2024
Viewed by 673
Abstract
Countless polls, studies and surveys conducted prior to and following the 2016 UK Referendum on Membership of the European Union confirmed immigration to be the key emotive issue for not only the British electorate, but several Western European nations. By critiquing key pieces [...] Read more.
Countless polls, studies and surveys conducted prior to and following the 2016 UK Referendum on Membership of the European Union confirmed immigration to be the key emotive issue for not only the British electorate, but several Western European nations. By critiquing key pieces of EU legislation, Go, Went, Gone (2015) by Jenny Erpenbeck offers a humanising, caustic warning of the troubling politicisation of EU and non-EU migration in Germany, suggesting the ways by which literature can destabilise institutional optics of power and counteract myths surrounding the process of racial othering. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Border Politics & Refugee Narratives in Contemporary Literature)
13 pages, 273 KiB  
Article
Mabata-Bata in Motion: The Transformation of Mia Couto’s Narrative in Sol de Carvalho’s Film
by Lola Geraldes Xavier, João Viana and Silvie Špánková
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020046 - 05 Mar 2024
Viewed by 706
Abstract
This paper analyzes Mia Couto’s short story “O dia em que explodiu Mabata-bata” [The day Mabata-bata exploded] and its adaptation by Sol de Carvalho’s film Mabata Bata. Through an analysis of both versions, this study aims to understand how Couto’s [...] Read more.
This paper analyzes Mia Couto’s short story “O dia em que explodiu Mabata-bata” [The day Mabata-bata exploded] and its adaptation by Sol de Carvalho’s film Mabata Bata. Through an analysis of both versions, this study aims to understand how Couto’s narrative was recreated and transfigured in the film adaptation. The film adaptation of the story employs a blend of images and additional text to extend the verbal dimensions of the original story, thus creating a new experience. It establishes affinities with the original story and introduces new elements that add to the narrative’s depth and complexity. The adaptation of the story in the film provides an opportunity to examine the decolonial perspective of the nation’s history, portraying the symbolic metamorphosis during the civil war (1977–1992). By analyzing both the short story and the film, this study highlights the pivotal role of literature and cinema in fostering a Mozambique “de-linking” identity through language, religion and traditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Decolonization in Lusophone Literature)
12 pages, 278 KiB  
Article
For a Psychoanalysis of the Flesh
by Domietta Torlasco
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 45; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020045 - 05 Mar 2024
Viewed by 769
Abstract
This essay takes the notion of “flesh” as the point of departure for exploring the viability and contemporary relevance of what Maurice Merleau-Ponty has called an “ontological psychoanalysis”. Primary interlocutors will be Octavia Butler’s novel Kindred and Hortense Spillers’s essay, “Mama’s Baby, Papa’s [...] Read more.
This essay takes the notion of “flesh” as the point of departure for exploring the viability and contemporary relevance of what Maurice Merleau-Ponty has called an “ontological psychoanalysis”. Primary interlocutors will be Octavia Butler’s novel Kindred and Hortense Spillers’s essay, “Mama’s Baby, Papa’s Maybe: An American Grammar Book”. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Literature, Philosophy and Psychoanalysis)
16 pages, 897 KiB  
Article
Ghosts of the Techno-Fix Ocean? A Short History of Periphylla periphylla in the Norwegian Fjords
by Tirza Meyer
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020044 - 04 Mar 2024
Viewed by 895
Abstract
In 1980, reports of deep-sea jellyfish blooms in Norwegian fjords led researchers to investigate the problem. The helmet jellyfish, Periphylla periphylla, has since migrated far north into Arctic waters. This paper examines what happened when the jellyfish blooms were noticed in 1980 [...] Read more.
In 1980, reports of deep-sea jellyfish blooms in Norwegian fjords led researchers to investigate the problem. The helmet jellyfish, Periphylla periphylla, has since migrated far north into Arctic waters. This paper examines what happened when the jellyfish blooms were noticed in 1980 from a historical and ethnographic perspective. It traces four research projects and business ideas that proposed solutions to the jellyfish problem and asks how they are representative of the ways in which humans meet the challenges of anthropogenic climate change. The paper concludes that the jellyfish problem was met with a “techno-fix” attitude that sought to “turn a problem into a resource”, which eventually leads to what Julia Livingston has termed “self-devouring growth”. In a final outlook, the article asks how we can engage with questions of conservation from a humanities perspective and concludes that the jellyfish story can help us to ask questions about “conservation for whom”. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Perspectives on Conservation Humanities)
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13 pages, 364 KiB  
Article
Conservation Humanities and Multispecies Justice
by Ursula K. Heise
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 43; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020043 - 01 Mar 2024
Viewed by 909
Abstract
This article argues that biodiversity conservation is primarily a social and cultural issue and only secondarily a scientific one. It explains the proxy logic of narratives about endangered species, which typically serve as proxies for community identities and the changes communities have undergone [...] Read more.
This article argues that biodiversity conservation is primarily a social and cultural issue and only secondarily a scientific one. It explains the proxy logic of narratives about endangered species, which typically serve as proxies for community identities and the changes communities have undergone through processes of modernization and colonization. Polar bears, whose endangerment is interpreted differently by North American and European audiences, on the one hand, and by Inuit communities, on the other, serve as an example of how endangered species narratives not only involve culture but also, more specifically, issues of multispecies justice. Conservation humanities needs to engage with the two central problems that multispecies justice has identified and grappled with: conflicts between the interests of disadvantaged human communities and nonhuman species and conflicts and trade-offs between the interests of different nonhuman species. The essay argues that adopting the framework of “multispecies justice” rather than “conservation” will help to overcome some of the impasses of interdisciplinary collaboration in environmental studies in the past. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Perspectives on Conservation Humanities)
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25 pages, 13661 KiB  
Article
“Are Ye Fantastical?”: Shakespeare’s Weird W[omen] in the 21st-Century Indian Adaptations Maqbool, Mandaar and Joji
by Subarna Mondal and Anindya Sen
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 42; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020042 - 29 Feb 2024
Viewed by 816
Abstract
Shakespeare’s Macbeth has traveled a long way from its original milieu. This paper takes three major 21st-century Indian adaptions of Macbeth as its primary texts. The city of Mumbai in the west in Maqbool, an imaginary coastal Bengal village in the east [...] Read more.
Shakespeare’s Macbeth has traveled a long way from its original milieu. This paper takes three major 21st-century Indian adaptions of Macbeth as its primary texts. The city of Mumbai in the west in Maqbool, an imaginary coastal Bengal village in the east in Mandaar, and the suburbs of Kerala in Joji in the south of the subcontinent become sites of “creative mistranslations” of the play. In this paper, we take the ambiguity that Shakespeare’s witches evoke in the early 17th-century Scottish world as a point of entry and consider how that ambiguity is translated in its 21st-century Indian on-screen adaptations. Cutting across spaciotemporal boundaries, the witches remain a source of utmost significance through their presence/absence in the adaptations discussed. In Maqbool, Shakespeare’s heath-hags become male upper-caste law-keepers, representing the tyrannies of state machinery. Mandaar’s witches become direct agents of Mandaar’s annihilation at the end after occupying a deceptively marginal position in the sleazy world of Gailpur. In an apparent departure, Joji’s world is shorn of witches, making him appear as the sole perpetrator of the destruction in a fiercely patriarchal family. A closer reading, however, reveals the ominous presence of some insidious power that defies the control of any individual. The compass that directs Macbeth and its adaptations, from the West to the East, from 1606 to date, is the fatalism that the witches weave, in their seeming absence as well as in their portentous presence. We cannot help but consider them as yardsticks in any tragedy that deals with the age-old dilemma of predestination and free will. Full article
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12 pages, 260 KiB  
Article
“To Live Is a Matter of Time”: Memory, Survival and Queer Refugeehood in Ocean Vuong’s On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous
by Sara Soler i Arjona
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 41; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020041 - 26 Feb 2024
Viewed by 953
Abstract
In his novel On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (2019), Ocean Vuong attempts to reweave the historical threads that have been brutally severed by American imperialism, forced migration and the imperatives of assimilation, as a practice of survival. Drawing on his own experience as [...] Read more.
In his novel On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (2019), Ocean Vuong attempts to reweave the historical threads that have been brutally severed by American imperialism, forced migration and the imperatives of assimilation, as a practice of survival. Drawing on his own experience as a Vietnamese refugee, Vuong situates a Vietnamese American queer protagonist at the centre of his non-linear narrative, which excavates the boy’s family history to trace the multiple histories of displacement informing who he is today. The novel’s temporal disorientation becomes a formulation of queer temporality that activates a critical reorientation of how experiences of refuge are typically represented—a coming into consciousness known as “refugeetude”. Such a critical reorientation serves a dual purpose. Firstly, by foregrounding the protagonist’s—and his family’s—shattered recollections, Vuong challenges dominant accounts of the Vietnam War and recovers the voices of those that are effaced by Western representation, thus assembling a more inclusive “just memory” of the war. Secondly, the novel disrupts the teleological narrative of progressive assimilation that is prevalent in refugee discourse by revealing the enduring forms of violence that displaced subjects must still face in contemporary America. By queering the normative temporality of refugee experience, the novel demonstrates how the characters’ refugeehood is not finite but ongoing, necessitating a continuous search for healing and resilience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Border Politics & Refugee Narratives in Contemporary Literature)
12 pages, 1574 KiB  
Article
Listing the Body: Embodied Experience and Identity in Autobiographical Graphic Illness Narratives
by Nancy Pedri
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 40; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020040 - 26 Feb 2024
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Abstract
“Listing the Body: Embodied Experience and Identity in Autobiographical Graphic Illness Narratives” examines the popular use of lists in autobiographical graphic illness narratives to determine how they are used to address the subject’s embodied experience of illness. After a brief discussion of what [...] Read more.
“Listing the Body: Embodied Experience and Identity in Autobiographical Graphic Illness Narratives” examines the popular use of lists in autobiographical graphic illness narratives to determine how they are used to address the subject’s embodied experience of illness. After a brief discussion of what lists are and how they have been said to function in literary texts, attention is given to examining how the verbal and visual lists included in several autobiographical graphic illness narratives narrate identity as understood across the body, in the mind of the self, and in the mind of others. Asking how lists function within autobiographical graphic illness narratives to address the ill subject’s fluctuating understanding of self as an embodied being, the article concludes that lists narrate the subject’s lived experience of illness. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Trauma, Ethics & Illness in Contemporary Literature and Culture)
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14 pages, 322 KiB  
Article
Philip Huynh’s The Forbidden Purple City: New Canadian Refugee Narratives and the Borders of the Socio-Political Community
by Pedro Miguel Carmona-Rodríguez
Humanities 2024, 13(2), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/h13020039 - 23 Feb 2024
Viewed by 891
Abstract
This paper examines Philip Huynh’s short story collection The Forbidden Purple City in relation to its engagement with the nativity–territory–citizenship triad on which Western socio-political communities found the principles of affiliation of their members. First, the Canadian reaffirmation of a discourse of national [...] Read more.
This paper examines Philip Huynh’s short story collection The Forbidden Purple City in relation to its engagement with the nativity–territory–citizenship triad on which Western socio-political communities found the principles of affiliation of their members. First, the Canadian reaffirmation of a discourse of national benevolence is contextualised to later draw on how the collection is nurtured by boundary-crossing ethics that interrogates any sequential relation between past and present, Vietnam and Canada, which usually structures refugee narratives. It is argued then that disruptive and productive time/space interconnections delegitimate any simplistic representations of easily assimilated grateful refugees, fracturing the convenient narration of Canada as a benefactor concerned with old and new international humanitarian causes. The newness of Huynh’s stories relies on their mobilisation of the discourse of state citizenship through exceptional migrancy and its disruptive border nature. In contrast to premises of birth and geographical territory, which lose ground as backbones of any affiliation, citizenship appears incomplete and processual. The stories use the precarious performativity of collective homogeneity expected of a former settler colony, like Canada, to launch agency and resistance to state homogenisation, and de-institutionalise the refugee subject to critically intervene sovereignty and political subjectivity. Finally, the stories evince that Canada’s social spectrum is ideal to explore the threshold opened by the adjacency of sameness and otherness embodied by Huynh’s protagonists. Their condition as diasporic refugee subjects augments the transformative potential of new refugee narratives, in which literal and metaphorical polymorphous borders unveil the bases of the contemporary Canadian socio-political community. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Border Politics & Refugee Narratives in Contemporary Literature)
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