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Portraits of the Artist

Dionysian Creativity in Selected Works by Gabriele D’Annunzio and Thomas Mann

Jessica Wood

The Dionysian – an impetus towards abandon, intoxication and creativity, but also chaos, death and dissolution – captured the imagination of both Gabriele D’Annunzio and Thomas Mann, two authors whose work otherwise seems antithetical. Both admired Friedrich Nietzsche and engaged with his iconic yet enigmatic idea of the «Dionysian» in their depictions of writers and artists. Like many of their own fictional characters, D’Annunzio and Mann appear to have been drawn towards this idea and its significance in an artistic context. In their novels and short stories, both portray writers and artists who rely on the precarious form of creativity that results from interactions with the Dionysian. This book argues that the portraits of the artist offered by D’Annunzio and Mann, and the depictions of creativity found within these portraits, demonstrate that these two giants of European literature were more alike than has hitherto been acknowledged – and more alike than they would perhaps have liked to think.

This book was the winner of the 2016 Early Career Researcher Prize in German Studies, a collaboration between the Institute for German Studies at the University of Birmingham and Peter Lang.

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Language Shift in Southern New England

Morphosyntactic Variation in Franco-American French

Louis Edward Stelling

Although the Franco-American communities of Southbridge, Massachusetts, and Woonsocket, Rhode Island, have much in common historically, the shift from French to English has advanced to differing degrees in the two locations. In this book, Louis Edward Stelling explores morphosyntactic variation and the advance of language shift using historical documentation, U.S. census figures and interviews conducted with sixty-nine informants.
After comparing and contrasting the sociolinguistic profiles of the two communities, Stelling describes some of the linguistic consequences of the shift from French to English in these traditional Franco-American centers through an analysis of two morphosyntactic variables: use of auxiliary verbs (être and avoir) in the passé composé and use of synthetic (inflected) and analytic (periphrastic) future forms. Findings provide new insight for understanding linguistic change during situations of language decline.
Southbridge and Woonsocket stand out as unique cases of language shift. Despite the differing degrees to which a gradual shift from French to English has advanced in the two communities, speech norms are remarkably similar today. While certain aspects of grammar are certainly changing, this is also the case in settings where French is the majority language. Moreover, variation among forms representing an overtly prescribed point of grammar bears all of the social meaning found in non-obsolescent varieties. Despite the sociolinguistic situation of language shift, the French language shows a degree of grammatical conservatism in both Southbridge and Woonsocket which may render this variety remarkably resistant to those qualitative changes which would otherwise add to the stigma of Franco-American French.
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An Autoethnography of a Life in Sign Language

Noel O'Connell

This book weaves intensely personal and evocative stories into a layered autoethnographic text about the author’s experience of childhood deafness, sign language and education. Interwoven with the performative narrative are powerful stories of stigma, trauma, friendships, relationships, love, isolation and displacement. Using interpretative and reflective analysis, the author explores the storied experience of self and belonging in family and school contexts, providing both personal and theoretical perspectives on language and culture. He traces the pathways he has taken in pursuit of a true sense of belonging in society, community and place.

This is an important contribution to the study of sign language, deaf education, disability and deaf health and well-being. It will be of interest to professionals and practitioners working with deaf children and parents and to students and researchers within social policy, social medicine, psychology, sociology, early childhood studies and special education.

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Fashion Tales

Feeding the Imaginary

Emanuela Mora and Marco Pedroni

Since its beginnings in the middle of the 19th century, fashion has been narrated through multiple media, both visual and verbal, and for such different purposes as marketing and advertising, art, costume history, social research and cultural dissemination. In this light, fashion has represented an important piece of material culture in modern industrial urban societies and in postcolonial and non-western contexts. Today, we are witnessing a turn in this imaginary as issues related to social, environmental and cultural sustainability come to predominate in many areas of human activity.
The book addresses this challenge. By facilitating encounters between disciplines and cultures, it explores a multitude of fashion issues, practices and views that feed the contemporary fashion imaginary: local cultures, linguistic codes, TV series, movies, magazines, ads, blogs, bodily practices. The book deals with a paramount issue for fashion studies: how do the production and circulation of fashion imaginary come about in the 21st century?

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Francesca de Lucia

This book focuses on the development of Italian American cultural identity throughout the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries.

Italy is becoming a destination, rather than a starting point for immigrants. Immigration remains a source of tension and debate both in the United States and in Europe. Analyzing the evolution of Italian American identity, from diaspora to globalization, from emblematic to latent ethnicity, can thus prove insightful.

Disparate works, including novels, films and newspaper articles, both by Italian and non-Italian American authors illustrate this paradigm. The catalyst for this transformation is the Second World War, which allowed Italian Americans to take part in the struggle to liberate Italy from Fascism, establishing in this way a connection with their roots while adhering more closely to mainstream American society through participation in the conflict. Post-war expressions of Italian American culture include the development of women’s writing, cinematic interactions with American Jews and African Americans, and the works of two novelists, Don DeLillo and Anthony Giardina, who embody different aspects of latent ethnicity.

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Ilse Nagelschmidt, Britta Borrego, Daria Majewski and Lisa König

In diesem Buch setzen sich die Autor*innen interdisziplinär und mehrperspektivisch mit Geschlechternormen und deren sozialer Bedingtheit auseinander. «Passing» ist dabei im Leben und Handeln von Menschen unterschiedlich verankert, wirksam und von Bedeutung. Es macht die Kontinuitäten, Grenzen und Spielräume innerhalb der Geschlechtersemantiken sichtbar. Der Band eröffnet Fragen nach dem (selbstbewussten) Scheitern daran und lotet Möglichkeiten und Grenzen der Subversion und anderer Handlungsfelder aus. Die hier versammelten Texte bieten theoretische, themenfeldspezifische, analytische und persönliche Zugänge. Sie verweisen damit auf eine breite Grundlage der Annäherung, machen Divergenzen der Gendertheorie transparent und laden die Leserschaft zur aktiven Weiterführung der Diskurse ein.

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Verknappungsphänomene in Sprache, Kultur und neuen Medien

Reduktion als funktionales Instrument und zeitgenössisches Stilmittel

Liane Ströbel

Im Mittelpunkt der Untersuchung steht die Frage, inwieweit Verknappung bewusst als funktionales Instrument und zeitgenössisches Stilmittel in Sprache, Kultur und neuen Medien eingesetzt wird. Der Sammelband untersucht das Phänomen der Verknappung zunächst als Strategie in der digitalen Welt, der Werbung und der graphischen Kommunikation und anschließend als Stilmittel in Kunst, Literatur und Sprache. Die Beiträger heben die Rolle von Verknappung als Nährboden für neue Komprimierungsprozesse hervor und zeigen übergreifend unterschiedliche Realisierungen von Verknappung in der modernen Gesellschaft auf.

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Innovation, Complexity and Policy

Contributions from 30 years of innovation policy research in Austria

Matthias Weber

This book brings together a set of contributions that show the breadth and depth of the scientific work of Josef Fröhlich and his influence on Austrian research, technology and innovation (RTI) policy. It is edited in honour of the occasion of his retirement as Head of Innovation Systems Department at the AIT Austrian Institute of Technology. The contributors provide an overview of important issues of debate at the intersection of innovation studies and government policy, which have been pivotal for the modernisation and consolidation of the Austrian innovation system since the early 1990s.

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Private and Public on Social Network Sites

Differences and Similarities between Germany and China in a Globalized World


Jingwei Wu

This book explores the boundary between «the private» and «the public» on Social Network Sites based on the sociability framework. The author analyses the roles of social norms and influences, benefits, and risks/costs, on the behaviors of SNSs users through models based on Social Exchange Theory, Social Penetration Theory and Communication Privacy Management Theory. She reviews different notions of «the private» and «the public» and selects the sociability framework to investigate the distinction between private and public. The author uses this theoretical framework to conduct online surveys and interviews with selected SNSs users in Germany and China and concludes that the clear boundary of «the private» and «the public» on SNSs is a result of acts of disclosure and/or withdrawal of personal information and political opinions. Globalization and mediatization contribute to similarities among different countries but do not erase the differences in their respective boundaries.

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Wiedergänger, Pilger, Indianer

Polen-Metonymien im langen 19. Jahrhundert


Heinrich Kirschbaum

Die Beiträge des Bandes nehmen Rhetoriken von Ganzheit und Zersplitterung in den Blick, mit denen das geteilte und staatenlos gewordene Polen im langen 19. Jahrhundert imaginiert wird. Die entscheidende Rolle kommt dabei der Figur der Metonymie zu, die in der Forschung immer noch im Schatten ihrer «Gegenspielerin», der Metapher, steht. Das vorliegende Buch lotet neue Ansätze und Perspektiven einer Forschungsrichtung aus, die man als «postkoloniale Identitätstropologie» bezeichnen könnte.