• Literature: history & criticism
      October 2018

      The Algerian War in French/Algerian Writing

      Literary Sites of Memory

      by Jonathan Lewis

      This book analyses representations of the Algerian War of Independence (1954–62) in the literary output of French authors of Algerian origin, problematising the extent to which these literary ‘sites of memory’ provide appropriate spaces of consensus for hitherto competing memories of the war.

    • Literature & Literary Studies
      January 2019

      Carmen Martín Gaite

      Poetics, Visual Elements and Space

      by Ester Bautista Botello

      This book analyses Carmen Martín Gaite’s novels published in the 1990s. The book is particularly important for its focus on the way a persistent presence of visual elements (drawing, painting and collage) shed light on the relevance of her residence in the United States.

    • Literary studies: classical, early & medieval
      December 2018

      Ecstasy in the Classroom

      Trance, Self, and the Academic Profession in Medieval Paris

      by Even-Ezra, Ayelet

      Can ecstatic experiences be studied with the academic instruments of rational investigation? What kinds of religious illumination are experienced by academically minded people? And what is the specific nature of the knowledge of God that university theologians of the Middle Ages enjoyed compared with other modes of knowing God, such as rapture, prophecy, the beatific vision, or simple faith? Ecstasy in the Classroom explores the interface between academic theology and ecstatic experience in the first half of the thirteenth century, formative years in the history of the University of Paris, medieval Europe’s “fountain of knowledge.” It considers little-known texts by William of Auxerre, Philip the Chancellor, William of Auvergne, Alexander of Hales, and other theologians of this community, thus creating a group portrait of a scholarly discourse. It seeks to do three things. The first is to map and analyze the scholastic discourse about rapture and other modes of cognition in the first half of the thirteenth century. The second is to explicate the perception of the self that these modes imply: the possibility of transformation and the complex structure of the soul and its habits. The third is to read these discussions as a window on the predicaments of a newborn community of medieval professionals and thereby elucidate foundational tensions in the emergent academic culture and its social and cultural context. Juxtaposing scholastic questions with scenes of contemporary courtly romances and reading Aristotle’s Analytics alongside hagiographical anecdotes, Ecstasy in the Classroom challenges the often rigid historiographical boundaries between scholastic thought and its institutional and cultural context.

    • Literary theory
      October 2018

      Literature and the Remains of the Death Penalty

      by Kamuf, Peggy

      Jacques Derrida has written that “the modern history of the institution named literature in Europe over the last three or four centuries is contemporary with and indissociable from a contestation of the death penalty.” How, Kamuf asks, does literature contest the death penalty today, particularly in the United States, where it remains the last of its kind in a nation that professes to be a democracy? What resources do fiction, narrative, and poetic language supply in the age of the remains of the death penalty? Following a lucid account of Derrida’s approach to the death penalty, Kamuf pursues these questions across literary texts by George Orwell, Robert Coover, Norman Mailer, Franz Kafka, and Charles Baudelaire. The readings address a range of questions that haunt the death penalty: the “mysteries” of witness; secrecy and public display; the undecidable relation of capital punishment and suicide; the sovereign powers of death and of pardon; and ways performative literary language can “play the law.” In relation to the death penalties they represent, these literary survivals may be seen as the ashes or remains of the phantasm that the death penalty has always been, the phantasm of calculating and ending finitude. A major contribution to the field of law and society, this book makes the case for literature as a space for contesting the death penalty, a case that scholars and activists working across a range of traditions will need to confront.

    • Literature: history & criticism
      October 2014

      Wang Yangming's Breaking through All the Six Encirclements

      by Xu Baoyun

      This is an excellent piece of writing about the history of Ming Dynasty. It is regarded as an entergate of Yangming psychology after after Fifteen Years of Wanli and Seven faces in Grand Ming Dynasty. This book elaborates the pith and marrow of Yanfming psychology and its developing course by decribing what happened in the six most important periods of Wang Yangming: "be trown into prison", "comprehen male homo sexuality", "suppress bandits in south Jiangxi", "catch Wang Ping by Strategy", "snipe at the emperor" and "teastfy the truth at Tianquan. It also explains the complex periodical situation."

    • Literature & Literary Studies
      May 2019

      Women and the City in French Literature and Culture

      Reconfiguring the Feminine in the Urban Environment

      by Siobhán McIlvanney, Gillian Ni Cheallaigh

      This collection of essays contains critical analysis, from a female perspective, of a selection of films, journals and novels from the French medieval period to the Franco-Algerian present, and gives us a strikingly original view of the relationship between women and the cities that they increasingly call ‘home’.

    • Literature & Literary Studies
      July 2019

      Horror and Religion

      New literary approaches to Theology, Race and Sexuality

      by Eleanor Beal, Jonathan Greenaway

      Horror and Religion is an edited collection of essays offering structured discussions of spiritual and theological conflicts in horror from the late-sixteenth to the twenty-first century. Contributors explore the various ways that horror and religion have interacted over themes of race and sexuality.

    • Literature: history & criticism
      March 2019

      Exterranean

      Extraction in the Humanist Anthropocene

      by Phillip John Usher

      Takes up a vibrant conversation in the environmental humanities, while shifting our emphasis from emissions to extraction as the source of ecological problems.

    • Literary theory
      March 2019

      The Tongue-Tied Imagination

      Decolonizing Literary Modernity in Senegal

      by Tobias Warner

      To readers interested in the world literature debate, the book opens new directions by investigating how the emergence of literary modernity is entangled with other textualities.

    • Literature: history & criticism
      January 2020

      Anarchaeologies

      Reading as Misreading

      by Erin Graff Zivin

      A clear and well-written account of complex theoretical material.

    • Literature: history & criticism
      January 2020

      Decadent Orientalisms

      The Decay of Colonial Modernity

      by David Fieni

      The book presents a compelling account of the fraught relationship between Muslims, Arabs, and Jews as objects of Semitism and anti-Semitism.

    • Literature: history & criticism
      December 2019

      The Literary Qur'an

      Narrative Ethics in the Maghreb

      by Hoda El Shakry

      The Literary Qurʾan deprovincializes Maghrebi literary studies.

    • Literature: history & criticism
      December 2019

      Radical Botany

      Plants and Speculative Fiction

      by Natania Meeker, Antónia Szabari

      It explores the centrality of plants and their mode of life to western modernity.

    • Literature: history & criticism
      December 2019

      The Disposition of Nature

      Environmental Crisis and World Literature

      by Jennifer Wenzel

      Engages "new materialist" questions of more-than-human agency without losing sight of "old materialist" questions of class, race, exploitation, and inequality.

    • Literature & Literary Studies
      September 2019

      Introducing the Medieval Dragon

      by Thomas Honegger

      It is the aim of this short study to explore the characteristics of the medieval dragon, to describe its pedigree in antiquity and beyond, to discuss the different and sometimes differing views on the dragon in the relevant medieval text types – notably encyclopaedias, religious texts, and secular poems and tales – and briefly to outline the development of the dragon in post-medieval literature and culture.

    • Literary studies: classical, early & medieval
      November 2019

      Middle English Devotional Compilations

      Composing Imaginative Variations in Late Medieval England

      by Diana Denissen

      Middle English Devotional Compilations approaches compiling as a literary activity and as an active way of shaping the medieval text. This monograph examines three major but understudied Middle English devotional compilations in depth: the Pore Caitif, The Tretyse of Love and A Talkyng of the Love of God.

    • Literature & Literary Studies
      November 2019

      John Ormond’s Organic Mosaic

      Poetry, Documentary, Nation

      by Kieron Smith

      In a uniquely dualistic creative career spanning five decades, John Ormond made major contributions to both English-language poetry and documentary filmmaking. Born in Swansea, he learned to ‘think in terms of pictures’ while working as a journalist in London, where he secured a job at the celebrated photojournalist magazine Picture Post. Employed later by the BBC in Cardiff during the early days of television, Ormond went on to become a pioneer in documentary film. This book is the first in-depth examination of the fascinating correspondences between Ormond’s twin creative channels; viewing his work against the backdrop of a changing Wales, it constitutes an important case study in the history of documentary filmmaking, in the history of British television, and in the cultural history of Wales.

    • Literature & Literary Studies
      February 2020

      New Theoretical Perspectives on Dylan Thomas

      “ A writer of words, and nothing else”?

      by Kieron Smith and Rhian Barfoot

      Dylan Thomas’s reputation precedes him. In keeping with his claim that he held ‘a beast, an angel, and a madman in him’, interpretations of his work have ranged from solemn adoration to dubious mythologising. His many voices continue to reverberate across culture and the arts: from poetry and letters, to popular music and Hollywood film. However, this wide and sometimes controversial renown has occasionally hindered serious analysis of his writing. Counterbalancing the often-misleading popular reputation, this book showcases eight new critical perspectives on Thomas’s work. It is the first to provide in one volume a critical overview of the multifaceted range of his output, from the poetry, prose and correspondence to his work for wartime propaganda filmmaking, his late play for voices Under Milk Wood, and his reputation in letters and wider society. The whole proves that Thomas was much more than his own self-characterisation as a ‘writer of words, and nothing else’.

    • Literature: history & criticism
      June 2020

      Noir Affect

      by Christopher Breu, Elizabeth A. Hatmaker, Justus Nieland, Kirin Watcher-Grene, Ignacio Sanchez Prado, Sean Grattan, Peter Hitchcock, Brian Rejack, Pamela Thoma, Alexander Dunst, Andrew Pepper, Paula Rabinowitz

      Traces noir’s negativity as it manifests in different national contexts from the U.S. to Mexico, France and Japan and across a range of different media (films, novels, video games, and manga.)

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