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Streifzüge durch die Welt der Sprachen und Kulturen

Festschrift für Dieter Huber zum 65. Geburtstag-


Edited By Melanie Arnold, Silvia Hansen-Schirra and Michael Poerner

Der Band versammelt Beiträge aus den Bereichen der Sprachwissenschaft, der Kulturwissenschaft und der Translationswissenschaft. Freunde, Kollegen und Schüler gratulieren dem Jubilar, der den Lehrstuhl für Allgemeine und Angewandte Sprachwissenschaft an der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz innehatte, zu seinem 65. Geburtstag. Die Sammlung zeichnet sich durch die große Bandbreite an behandelten Themen aus, die sich auch in der Lehr- und Forschungstätigkeit des Jubilars widerspiegelt.


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Jutta Ernst: De/marcations. Border discourse in Jane Urquhart’s The underpainter


259 Jutta Ernst De/marcations. Border discourse in Jane Urquhart’s The underpainter The 49th parallel of latitude, which constitutes the political boundary between Canada and the U.S., is, for a long stretch, a relatively arbitrary demarcation. As John Herd Thompson points out, “[s]o identical is the landscape on either side that historians who reprint photographs of boundary surveyors at work must take care not to reverse the negatives” (Thompson 2006: xi).1 However, it is a border fraught with “ideological meaning” (xi), especially when it comes to Canadian self-perceptions. Russell Brown convincingly argues that [t]he Canadian-American border figures in English-Canadian discourse in a way that is greater than its physical and political existence would seem to justify. When Canada is talked about, defined, or contemplated, this border is often referred to […] as essential to the definition of the country as a whole (Brown 1991: 1).2 Not surprisingly, a contrastive approach that pits Canada against the U.S. has developed into one of the most commonly used methodologies for studying Can- ada and its culture. In his Borderlands. How we talk about Canada (1998), W.H. New acknowledges the relevance of border rhetoric for Canadian Studies, but asks for a more appro- priate use of it. For one, he deems it necessary to take into account not just the 49th parallel, but all of Canada’s state borders (New 1998: 6). In addition, he points to the fact that national and other boundaries serve not merely as descrip- tions of given limits...

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