Author: Nicholas Dames
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2001-06-14
Genre: Literary Criticism
With Joyce, Proust, and Faulkner in mind, we have come to understand the novel as a form with intimate ties to the impulses and processes of memory. This study contends that this common perception is an anachronism that distorts our view of the novel. Based on an investigation of representative novels, Amnesiac Selves shows that the Victorian novel bears no such secure relation to memory, and, in fact, it tries to hide, evade, and eliminate remembering. Dames argues that the notable scarcity and distinct unease of representations of remembrance in the nineteenth-century British novel signal an art form struggling to define and construct new concepts of memory. By placing nineteenth-century British fiction from Jane Austen to Wilkie Collins alongside a wide variety of Victorian psychologies and theories of mind, Nicholas Dames evokes a novelistic world, and a culture, before modern memory--one dedicated to a nostalgic evasion of detailed recollection which our time has largely forgotten.
Author: Elisha Cohn
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Release Date: 2015-12-01
Genre: Dreams in literature
Still Life: Suspended Development in the Victorian Novel rethinks the nineteenth-century aesthetics of agency through the Victorian novel's fascination with states of reverie, trance, and sleep. These states challenge contemporary scientific and philosophical accounts of the perfectibility of the self, which privileged reflective self-awareness. In dialogue with the field of literature and science studies and affect studies, this book shows how Victorian writers used narrative form to respond to the analytical practices and knowledge production of those other disciplines. Drawing upon canonical texts--by Charlotte Bronte, George Eliot, George Meredith, and Thomas Hardy--Still Life contends that depictions of non-purposive perceptual experience suspend the processes of self-cultivation (Bildung) central to Victorian aesthetics, science, psychology, and political theory, as well as most critical accounts of the novel form. Departing from the values of individual cultivation and moral revelation associated with the genre, these writers offer an affective framework for understanding the subtly non-instrumental powers of narrative. Victorian novels ostensibly working within the parameters of the Bildungsroman are suspended by moments of "still life": a decentered lyricism associated with states of diminished consciousness. They use this style to narrate what should be unnarratable: experiences not dependent on reflective consciousness, which express a distinctive ambivalence toward dominant developmental frameworks of individual self-culture. "
Author: Anne Stiles
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date: 2011-12-22
Genre: Literary Criticism
In the 1860s and 1870s, leading neurologists used animal experimentation to establish that discrete sections of the brain regulate specific mental and physical functions. These discoveries had immediate medical benefits: David Ferrier's detailed cortical maps, for example, saved lives by helping surgeons locate brain tumors and haemorrhages without first opening up the skull. These experiments both incited controversy and stimulated creative thought, because they challenged the possibility of an extra-corporeal soul. This book examines the cultural impact of neurological experiments on late-Victorian Gothic romances by Robert Louis Stevenson, Bram Stoker, H. G. Wells and others. Novels like Dracula and Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde expressed the deep-seated fears and visionary possibilities suggested by cerebral localization research, and offered a corrective to the linearity and objectivity of late Victorian neurology.
Author: Gaurav Desai
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Release Date: 2013-10-08
Genre: Literary Criticism
Reading the life narratives and literary texts of South Asians writing in and about East Africa, Gaurav Desai builds a surprising, alternative history of Africa's experience with slavery, migration, colonialism, nationalism, and globalization. Consulting Afrasian texts that are literary and nonfictional, political and private, he broadens the scope of African and South Asian scholarship and inspires a more nuanced understanding of the Indian Ocean's fertile routes of exchange. Desai shows how the Indian Ocean engendered a number of syncretic identities and shaped the medieval trade routes of the Islamicate empire, the early independence movements galvanized in part by Gandhi's southern African experiences, the invention of new ethnic nationalisms, and the rise of plural, multiethnic African nations. Calling attention to lives and literatures long neglected by traditional scholars, Desai introduces rich, interdisciplinary ways of thinking not only about this specific region but also about the very nature of ethnic history and identity. Traveling from the twelfth century to today, he concludes with a look at contemporary Asian populations in East Africa and their struggle to decide how best to participate in the development and modernization of their postcolonial nations without sacrificing their political autonomy.
Victorian Time examines how literature of the era registers the psychological impact of the onset of a modern, industrialized experience of time as time-saving technologies, such as steam-powered machinery, aimed at making economic life more efficient, signalling the dawn of a new age of accelerated time.
Author: Robert Lang
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Release Date: 2014-04-01
Genre: Performing Arts
Tunisian cinema is often described as the most daring of all Arab cinemas. For many, Tunisia appeared to be a model of equipoise between "East" and "West," and yet, during Zine El Abidine Ben Ali's presidency, from 1987 to 2011, the country became the most repressive state in the Maghreb. Against considerable odds, a generation of filmmakers emerged in the mid-1980s to make films that are allegories of resistance to the increasingly illiberal trends that were marking their society. In New Tunisian Cinema, Robert Lang focuses on eight films by some of the nation's best-known directors, including Man of Ashes (1986), Bezness (1992) and Making Of (2006) by Nouri Bouzid, Halfaouine (1990) by Férid Boughedir, The Silences of the Palace (1994) by Moufida Tlatli, Essaïda (1997) by Mohamed Zran, Bedwin Hacker (2002) by Nadia El Fani, and The TV Is Coming (2006) by Moncef Dhouib. He explores the political economy and social, historical, and psychoanalytic dimensions of these works and the strategies filmmakers deployed to preserve cinema's ability to shape debates about national identity. These debates, Lang argues, not only helped initiate the 2011 uprising that ousted Ben Ali's regime but also did much to inform and articulate the aspirations of the Tunisian people in the new millennium.
How did the Victorians read novels? Nicholas Dames answers that deceptively simple question by revealing a now-forgotten range of nineteenth-century theories of the novel, a range based in a study of human physiology during the act of reading, He demonstrates the ways in which the Victorians thought they read, and uncovers surprising responses to the question of what might have transpired in the minds and bodies of readers of Victorian fiction. His detailed studies of novel critics who were also interested in neurological science, combined with readings of novels by Thackeray, Eliot, Meredith, and Gissing, propose a vision of the Victorian novel-reader as far from the quietly immersed being we now imagine - as instead a reader whose nervous system was addressed, attacked, and soothed by authors newly aware of the neural operations of their public. Rich in unexpected intersections, from the British response to Wagnerian opera to the birth of speed-reading in the late nineteenth century, The Physiology of the Novel challenges our assumptions about what novel-reading once did, and still does, to the individual reader, and provides new answers to the question of how novels influenced a culture's way of reading, responding, and feeling.
Focuses on non-dramatic works of the early modernism period in England while emphasizing the origins and developments of key writers and poets, providing broad coverage of topics ranging from cultural anthropology and mythology to impressionism and the emergence of literary magazines.
Author: Shawn J. Parry-Giles
Publisher: Peter Lang Pub Incorporated
Release Date: 2002-01-01
Genre: Language Arts & Disciplines
Bill Clinton is the embodiment and epitome of American politics in the postmodern, mediated age. Clinton's abel marshaling of images, which allowed him to retain popularity and position when faced with compelling obstacles, marks him as the preeminent figure in a fluid and fluctuating era of image-politics. Constructing Clinton: Hyper-reality & Presidential Image-Making in Postmodern Politics pays particular attention to the colelction fo desparate, sometimes connected, often random images that crate a site of politcal meaning we know as "Bill Clinton, former president of the United States." Through analyses of unique image texts--including The Man from Hope, The War Room, Primary Colors, MTV's Biorhythms, and PBS' The American President--Constructiing Clinton focuses on teh image of Bill Clinton as it was defined by and trapped in teh hyperreality so characteristic of contemporary presidential politics.
Associationism and the Literary Imagination traces the influence of empirical philosophy and associationist psychology on theories of literary creativity and on the experience of reading literature. It runs from David Hume's Treatise of Human Nature in 1739 to the works of major literary critics of the twentieth century, such as I.A. Richards, W.K. Wimsatt and Northrop Frye. Cairns Craig explores the ways in which associationist conceptions of literature gave rise to some of the key transformations in British writing between the romantic and modernist periods. In particular, he analyses the ways in which authors' conceptions of the form of their readers' aesthetic experience led to radical developments in literary style, from the fragmentary narrative of Sterne's Tristram Shandy in 1760 to Virginia Woolf's experiments in the rendering of characters' consciousness in the 1920s; and from Wordsworth's poetic use of autobiography to J.G. Frazer's exploration of a mythic unconscious in The Golden Bough. Detailed analyses are offered of the ways in which a wide variety of major British writers, including Scott, Lady Morgan, Dickens, Tennyson, Hardy, Yeats, Joyce and Woolf developed their literary techniques on the basis of associationist conceptions of the mind, and of how modern literary criticism - from Arthur Symons to Roland Barthes - is founded on associationist principles. Associationism and the Literary Imagination relocates the traditions of British writing since the eighteenth century within the neglected context of its native empirical philosophy, and reveals how many of the issues assumed to be products of 'postmodern' or 'deconstructive' theory have long been foregrounded and debated within the traditions of British empiricism. This is a work which provides a radical new perspective on the history of literature in Britain and Ireland and challenges many of the assumptions of contemporary theoretical debate about the