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Writing the Self, Writing the Nation

Romantic Selfhood in the Works of Germaine de Staël and Claire de Duras

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Stacie Allan

The French Revolution represents a pivotal moment within the history of personhood in France, where gender and national differences provided the foundations of society. As such, these constructs feature as ideological battlegrounds in the search for identity and self-expression within the Romantic literature published between the revolutions of 1789 and 1830. This book considers Germaine de Staël’s and Claire de Duras’s depictions of men’s and women’s shared and diverging lived experiences to offer an innovative transnational perspective on the usually male-focused mal du siècle. Its methodology combines feminist revisions of the novel, situated reading practices, and life writing research with an intersectional approach to gender and nationhood. This framework presents a dialectical relationship between sameness and difference on formal and thematic levels that challenges the construction and enforcement of binaries within early nineteenth-century legislation, discourse, and culture. Beyond Staël’s and Duras’s intertextual relationship, this book promotes the importance of an understudied period in literary scholarship, clarifies women’s role within French Romanticism, and explores the tense relationship between the self and the nation.

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Violent Disruptions

American Imaginations of Racial Anxiety in William Faulkner and Richard Wright

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Linda Chavers

Violent Disruptions: American Imaginations of Racial Anxiety in William Faulkner and Richard Wright examines two authors who have powerfully predicted the formation of racial identities and its surrounding discourse in the United States today: William Faulkner (1897–1962) and Richard Wright (1908–1960). Using the works of Faulkner and Wright, this text argues that race becomes visible only through image production and exchange. Further, it argues that following the dismantling of our legally upheld racial inequality and everyday racist language, it is precisely the visual register wherein we see most acutely the continued present-day operation of racial inequality. Violent Disruptions thus places William Faulkner and Richard Wright at the center of our current dramas in the 21st century in popular television, political theater and criminal justice.

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Unsettling the Gap

Race, Politics and Indigenous Education

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Sophie Rudolph

Unsettling the Gap: Race, Politics and Indigenous Education examines pressing issues of inequality in education. The notion of gap—and the need to close it—is used widely in public and policy debates to name the nature and scope of disadvantage. In the competitive world of education, gaps have become associated with students who are seen to be "falling behind," "failing" or "dropping out." A global deficit discourse is, therefore, mobilised and normalised. But this discourse has a history and is deeply political. Unsettling the Gap examines this history and how it is politically activated through an analysis of the "Australian Closing the Gap in Indigenous Disadvantage" policy. In this policy discourse the notion of gap serves as a complex and multiple signifier, attached to individuals, communities and to national history.

In unravelling these diverse modalities of gap, the text illuminates the types of ruling binaries that tend to direct dynamics of power and knowledge in a settler colonial context. This reveals not only the features of the crisis of "Indigenous educational disadvantage" that the policy seeks to address, but the undercurrents of a different type of crisis, namely the authority of the settler colonial state. By unsettling the normalised functions of gap discourse the book urges critical reflections on the problem of settler colonial authority and how it constrains the possibilities of Indigenous educational justice.

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Underwords

Re-reading the Subtexts of Modernity

Alec Charles

What takes place when we examine texts close-up? The art of close reading, once the closely guarded province of professional literary critics, now underpins the everyday processes of forensic scrutiny conducted by those brigades of citizen commentators who patrol the realms of social media.

This study examines at close quarters a series of key English texts from the last hundred years: the novels of Virginia Woolf and James Joyce, the plays of Samuel Beckett, the poetry of Sylvia Plath and Philip Larkin, the films of Alfred Hitchcock and the tweets of Donald Trump. It digs beneath their surface meanings to discover microcosmic ambiguities, allusions, ironies and contradictions which reveal tensions and conflicts at the heart of the paradox of patriarchal history. It suggests that acts of close reading may offer radical perspectives upon the bigger picture, as well as the means by which to deconstruct it. In doing so, it suggests an alternative to a classical vision of cultural progress characterised by irreconcilable conflicts between genders, genres and generations.

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Twenty-First-Century Chinese Drama

Four Plays by Wan Fang

Edited by Valerie Pellatt

This anthology is a collection of four contemporary Chinese plays by the playwright Wan Fang, presented in the original Chinese and in English translation. Since the 1990s, modern Chinese drama has experienced a revival, and these plays are representative of the kind of theatre which audiences in China now enjoy. The time is ripe for them to be staged internationally through the medium of translation. This book provides Chinese and English versions consecutively, to enable the plays to be used for study or performance. The volume also offers an introduction to the development of modern Chinese drama over the twentieth century, as a background to the plays included here. In addition, Wan Fang’s own introduction to the writing of plays, and these plays in particular, gives us insights into the mechanisms of writing and staging in a twenty-first-century Chinese context.

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Textos «ilegibles»

Reflexiones sobre la representación de la comedia áurea

Isaac Benabu

Textos «ilegibles», entre comillas; porque en gran parte los textos dramáticos se compusieron para ser representados, no para ser leídos. Por supuesto que en primer lugar hay que leer el texto de una obra para enterarse de qué se trata. Sin embargo para su representación sobre las tablas hay que recurrir a una lectura especializada, la lectura teatral. Esta aproximación requiere que el texto se lea a la inversa, por decirlo así, desde el final, punto donde toda la acción se resuelve, hacia el principio punto donde nada se sabe. Así al preparar un montaje o estudiar la dramaturgia de una obra se hace posible construir tanto el desarrollo de la trama como la caracterización de los personajes.

Este libro aplica esta aproximación teórica a una interpretación de varias comedias del Siglo de Oro español como ejemplificación de la metodología empleada.

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The Teacher’s Closet

Lesbian and Gay Educators in Georgia’s Public Middle Schools

Heather A. Cooper

The stories in The Teacher’s Closet: Lesbian and Gay Educators in Georgia’s Public Middle Schools reveal the intricate and multifaceted process of identity management that lesbian and gay Georgia middle school teachers regularly engage in, with the intention of carefully negotiating the conservative, heterosexist, and at times homophobic culture of education. Disclosure for a homosexual teacher is not a one-time event. As the stories reveal, managing one's sexual identity is an ongoing process. A feeling of uneasiness surrounding acceptance from others is also a regular occurrence in the homosexual community. To understand why lesbian and gay teachers feel the need to conceal and protect their homosexual identities, it is necessary to understand the social and political climate that forces them to surrender their real identity. In our heterosexist society where homosexuals are often portrayed as different, even sinful, it is not surprising that many homosexual teachers refrain from disclosing their sexual identity to their students, especially in the conservative state of Georgia. The Teacher’s Closet is relevant to courses that include diversity in teacher education and teach inclusion and equality in education.

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Spielarten der Populärkultur

Kinder- und Jugendliteratur und -medien im Feld des Populären

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Edited by Ute Dettmar and Ingrid Tomkowiak

Populärkultur war und ist ein zentraler Teil der Jugendkultur, zunehmend auch der Kinderkultur. Zugleich partizipieren Kinder- und Jugendliteratur und -medien an der global, in multimedialen Bezugssystemen agierenden Populärkultur. Die Beiträge gehen den vielfältigen wechselseitigen Beziehungen zwischen beiden Bereichen in historischen und gegenwärtigen Entwicklungen nach. Sie untersuchen «Dimensionen und Dynamiken» der Popularisierung vom 19. Jahrhundert bis hin zu aktuellen Entwicklungen des seriellen, transmedialen Erzählens, zeichnen entlang populärer Figuren, wie dem Golem oder Heidi, Formen der «(Re)Präsentation» nach, verfolgen «Aushandlungen» im Feld des Populären, beleuchten «Schnittstellen und Interferenzen» und untersuchen charakteristische «ästhetische Strategien» in Bildmedien und Literatur.

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Resisting the Power of Mea Culpa

A Story of Twentieth-Century Ireland

Gerard Rodgers

This is both a memoir of childhood trauma and a searing work of social criticism. Through his own experience of clerical abuse and his struggle with the system that allowed it to happen, the author documents an important period of social change in Ireland. The aim of the study is to situate tough personal experiences in lifeworld contexts for the purpose of changing powerful beliefs and practices.

The author contends that psychological disciplines seldom interface with regional histories in a convincing way. The book is critical of dominant ideologies which reinforce acquiescence and exaggerate the power to act in the face of multilevel disempowerment. The author also maintains that old ways of knowing are still replicated in the structure of dominant psychological frameworks. A constancy principle of micro-regulation engenders mindful quietude and/or robust notions of psychological invulnerability. This truncated worldview comes at too high a cost.

The book will be of interest to historians, social commentators, psychologists and critical theorists, as well as those in the field of trauma, addiction and psychiatry.

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Religion Across Television Genres

Community, Orange Is the New Black, The Walking Dead, and Supernatural

Joseph M. Valenzano III and Erika Engstrom

Religion Across Television Genres: Community, Orange Is the New Black, The Walking Dead, and Supernatural connects communication theories to the religious content of TV programs across an array of platforms and content genres, specifically the NBC comedy Community, the critically acclaimed Netflix series Orange Is the New Black, AMC’s international megahit The Walking Dead, and the CW’s long-running fan favorite Supernatural. Its contemporary relevancy makes Religion Across Television Genres ideal for use as a library resource, scholarly reference, and textbook for both undergraduate and graduate courses in mass media, religious studies, and popular culture.