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Latest episodes from New Books in Literary Studies

Rae Lynn Schwartz-DuPre, "Curious about George: Curious George, Cultural Icons, Colonialism, and US Exceptionalism" (UP of Mississippi, 2021)

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 1, 2022 60:31

In 1940, Hans Augusto Rey and Margret Rey built two bikes, packed what they could, and fled wartime Paris. Among the possessions they escaped with was a manuscript that would later become one of the most celebrated books in children's literature—Curious George. Since his debut in 1941, the mischievous icon has only grown in popularity. After being captured in Africa by the Man in the Yellow Hat and taken to live in the big city's zoo, Curious George became a symbol of curiosity, adventure, and exploration. In Curious about George: Curious George, Cultural Icons, Colonialism, and US Exceptionalism (University Press of Mississippi, 2021), author Rae Lynn Schwartz-DuPre argues that the beloved character also performs within a narrative of racism, colonialism, and heroism. Using theories of colonial and rhetorical studies to explain why cultural icons like Curious George are able to avoid criticism, Schwartz-DuPre investigates the ways these characters operate as capacious figures, embodying and circulating the narratives that construct them, and effectively argues that discourses about George provide a rich training ground for children to learn US citizenship and become innocent supporters of colonial American exceptionalism. By drawing on postcolonial theory, children's criticisms, science and technology studies, and nostalgia, Schwartz-DuPre's critical reading explains the dismissal of the monkey's 1941 abduction from Africa and enslavement in the US, described in the first book, by illuminating two powerful roles he currently holds: essential STEM ambassador at a time when science and technology is central to global competitiveness and as a World War II refugee who offers a “deficient” version of the Holocaust while performing model US immigrant. Curious George's twin heroic roles highlight racist science and an Americanized Holocaust narrative. By situating George as a representation of enslaved Africans and Holocaust refugees, Curious about George illuminates the danger of contemporary zero-sum identity politics, the colonization of marginalized identities, and racist knowledge production. Importantly, it demonstrates the ways in which popular culture can be harnessed both to promote colonial benevolence and to present possibilities for resistance. Rebekah Buchanan is an Associate Professor of English and Director of English Education at Western Illinois University. Her research focuses on feminism, activism, and literacy practices in youth culture, specifically through zines and music. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Trace

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 1, 2022 13:08

Farah Bakaari talks about Trace, a core concept in deconstruction, that denotes an absent presence, a mark of something that is no longer there. She talks about how in her own work she has used the concept of trace to write about legacies of colonialism and slave trade in the Atlantic and Indian oceans, for which there is no archive that is conventionally legible. In the episode Farah mentions the work of Parisa Vaziri on Iranian cinema and music as an example of work that interrogates an historical trace. You can listen to Parisa discuss forthcoming book here. Farah Bakaari is a doctoral student in the Department of Literatures in English at Cornell University. Her research focuses on twentieth-century African literature, in particular the politics of time in anti-colonial and postcolonial works of art. She also works in memory studies and trauma theory. She holds a BA in English and Political Science from Grinnell College. Image: © 2021 Saronik Bosu Music used in promotional material: ‘The Lost and Forgotten' by Hellenica Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Katherine E. Sugg, "Apocalypse and Heroism in Popular Culture" (McFarland, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 30, 2022 82:24

Stories of world-ending catastrophe have featured prominently in film and television lately. Zombie apocalypses, climate disasters, alien invasions, global pandemics, and dystopian world orders fill our screens—typically with a singular figure or tenacious group tasked with saving or salvaging the world. In her new book, Apocalypse and Heroism in Popular Culture: Allegories of White Masculinity in Crisis (McFarland Press, 2022), Dr. Katherine E. Sugg asks, why are stories of End Times crisis so popular with audiences? And why is the hero so often a white man who overcomes personal struggles and major obstacles to lead humanity toward a restored future? This book examines the familiar trope of the hero and the recasting of contemporary anxieties in films and TV like The Walking Dead, Snowpiercer, Mad Max: Fury Road, and more. Some have familiar roots in Western cultural traditions, yet many question popular assumptions about heroes and heroism to tell new and fascinating stories about race, gender and society, and the power of individuals to change the world. Katherine E. Sugg is a professor of English and Latino & Puerto Rican studies at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, Connecticut. She teaches and writes on world literatures, Latino and comparative American studies, and film and media. She has also written several journal articles and published a book entitled Gender and Allegory in Transamerican Fiction and Performance. Carrie Lynn Evans is a PhD student at Université Laval in Quebec City. carrie-lynn.evans@lit.ulaval.ca @carrielynnland  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Radha Raghunathan, "Soaring with Bharati in the Wisdom-Chariot (Ñānaratam)" (Adyar Library, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 30, 2022 27:43

Mahakavi Subramania Bharati was a multi-faceted genius, an innovative poet who initiated a new era in Tamil literature. He was the first writer to have introduced to the Tamil literary world a new genre called ‘novella' by his composition of Ñānaratam (‘The Wisdom-chariot') written in elegant Tamil prose. In Soaring with Bharati in the Wisdom-Chariot (Ñānaratam), Dr Radha Raghunathan gives the biographical background of Bharati, his association with Dr. Annie Besant of the Theosophical Society and his contributions for ‘New India' and ‘Commonweal,' and a translation of Bharati's ‘novella' Ñānaratam. Raj Balkaran is a scholar, online educator, and life coach. For information see rajbalkaran.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

G. Ronald Murphy, "Brecht and the Bible: A Study of Religious Nihilism and Human Weakness in Brecht's Drama of Morality and the City" (UNC Press, 2020)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 30, 2022 44:03

In Brecht and the Bible: A Study of Religious Nihilism and Human Weakness in Brecht's Drama of Morality and the City (UNC Press, 2020), Father G. Ronald Murphy argues that Brecht, atheist and Marxist though he was, was also a sensitive reader and interpreter of the Bible. Murphy persuasively shows that Brecht's use of Biblical texts was not only satirical, but was at times deadly serious, particularly concerning the theme of death itself. For Brecht, the Bible provides eloquent reminders of the finitude of life and of the necessity of work, of eating by the sweat of one's brow. The conflict between work and life, for example in the case of Mother Courage's paradoxical dependence on the war for her survival even as it kills her precious children, proves a major theme in Brecht. This is a work that should appeal to scholars of German literature, but also to anyone interested in the interpretation of Brecht, whether for scholarly or artistic reasons. Andy Boyd is a playwright based in Brooklyn, New York. He is a graduate of the playwriting MFA at Columbia University, Harvard University, and the Arizona School for the Arts. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Book Talk 53: Paul Edwards on Toni Morrison's "Playing in the Dark"

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 30, 2022 80:17

Toni Morrison's Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination is a must-read for anyone interested in American literature and in the formation of American identity in general. In her short, incisive book, Nobel-prize winner Morrison explores the ways in which canonical authors like Edgar Allan Poe, Herman Melville, Mark Twain, Willa Cather, William Faulkner and Ernest Hemingway conspicuously invented African American characters for their projects of creating American identity – and how critics have deliberately overlooked, ignored or dismissed this dimension of the American canon. Morrison's point is not to out these writers as racist or to cancel their works but to explain the role of African American figures in the aesthetic and artistic project of inventing American identity and a canon of national literature. I spoke with Paul Edwards, who is my colleague as Assistant Professor of English and Dramatic Literature at New York University and a book reviews editor for The Black Scholar. Professor Edwards's current book project, The Black Wave: The New Negro Renaissance in Interwar Germany, reveals the effects of the New Negro/Harlem Renaissance in Germany from 1925 to 1938. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Joseph Boone, "Furnace Creek" (Eyewear Publishing, 2021)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 29, 2022 57:23

Taking its inspiration from Great Expectations, Furnace Creek (Eyewear Publishing, 2021) teases us with the question of what Pip might have been like had he grown up in the American South of the 1960s and 1970s and faced the explosive social issues--racial injustice, a war abroad, women's and gay rights, class struggle--that galvanized the world in those decades. A guilty encounter with an escaped felon, a summer spent working for an eccentric man with a mysterious past, conflicted erotic feelings for his employer's niece and nephew--these events set the stage for a journey of sexual and moral discovery that takes Newt Seward to New England, Rome, and Paris--all before returning home to confront his life's many expectations and disappointments. Deftly combining elements of coming-of-age story, novel of erotic discovery, Southern Gothic fiction, and detection-mystery thriller, Furnace Creek leaps the frame of Dickens' masterpiece to provide a contemporary meditation on the perils of desire, ambition, love, loss, and family. Joseph Allen Boone is a professor of English and gender studies at the University of Southern California and the author of Libidinal Currents: Sexuality and the Shaping of Modernism and Tradition Counter Tradition: Love and the Form of Fiction. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Humanities Center, the Huntington, the Stanford Humanity Center, and the American Council of Learned Societies and has been in residency at the Liguria Center at Bogliasco, the Rockefeller-Bellagio Center, and the Valparaiso Foundation. Morteza Hajizadeh is a Ph.D. graduate in English from the University of Auckland in New Zealand. His research interests are Cultural Studies; Critical Theory; Environmental History; Medieval (Intellectual) History; Gothic Studies; 18th and 19th Century British Literature. YouTube Channel. Twitter. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Sextuality

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 29, 2022 12:00

Stephen Guy-Bray talks about sexuality, a concept that brings together the the use of sexual metaphors in the description of textual production and the erotics that inhere in reading praxes. Among other things, this concept is a critique of the use of popular heteronormative metaphors of reproduction to describe the creation of literature. Stephen Guy-Bray is professor of English at the University of British Columbia. He specializes in Renaissance poetry, queer theory, and poetics. He has just finished a monograph on line endings in Renaissance poetry. Image: © 2021 Saronik Bosu Music used in promotional material: ‘The Gold Lining' by Broke For Free Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

John Gillis, "The Fadden More Psalter: The Discovery and Conservation of a Medieval Treasure" (Wordwell Books, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 28, 2022 50:56

In The Faddan More Psalter: The Discovery and Conservation of a Medieval Treasure Dr. John Gillis explores the conservation, construction, and context of an early medieval psalter discovered by chance in a bog at Faddan More, Co. Tipperary in July 2006. The different facets of this find are discussed in-depth, along with the pre-existing and newly created methods, tools, and ideas from different disciplines used to reveal its secrets. Gillis shines a light on this incredibly significant manuscript – named one of the National Museum of Ireland's top ten treasures - that represents the first insular manuscript to be discovered in the past 200 years and the first from a wetland environment. The Faddan More Psalter: The Discovery and Conservation of a Medieval Treasure was published by Wordwell and National Museum of Ireland in 2022. John Gillis is Chief Manuscript Conservator in the Library Preservation and Conservation Department in Trinity College Dublin. In 1988 he established and worked as Head of Conservation in the Delmas Conservation Bindery at Archbishop Marsh's Library, Dublin. John has been teaching book conservation techniques and theory in Italy for over 20 years. His major achievement to date has been the conservation of the Fadden More Psalter at the National Museum of Ireland Conservation Department over a four-and-a-half year period, for which he won the Heritage Council of Ireland Conservation Award in 2010. Dr. Danica Ramsey-Brimberg is a multidisciplinary researcher, who recently graduated with her PhD in History from the University of Liverpool and is an editorial assistant for the Church Archaeology journal. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Min Hyoung Song, "Climate Lyricism" (Duke UP, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 28, 2022 73:52

In Climate Lyricism (Duke University Press, 2022), Min Hyoung Song models a climate change-centered reading practice that helps us better understand and respond to climate change by moving from forms of everyday denial to everyday attention and shared agency. Tune in to this episode of New Books in Asian American Studies to hear Min talk about how this project of reading for climate lyricism emerged out of his work as an Asian Americanist; the importance of the humanities in cultivating practices of everyday attention that are critical to understanding and acting on climate change; staying with bad feelings in order to move from practices of everyday denial to everyday attention; how reading with everyday attention to climate can model a way of living with everyday attention to climate, as well; the properties of climate change that make it so difficult to write about using plot or narrative; what writers might do to bring attention to and illuminate ways of living in and through climate crisis; how climate change is connected to other contemporary forms of violent dispossession and social inequities; and, in the midst of all this, how you and I might live during these difficult times. Min Hyoung Song is Professor of English at Boston College. Jennifer Gayoung Lee is a writer and data analyst based in New York City. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Cognitive Cultural Studies

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 28, 2022 14:05

Torsa Ghosal talks about Cognitive Cultural Studies, a field that entails methodologies that situate the human mind in historical and cultural contexts, sometimes working against models of the mind proceeding from the Cognitive Sciences. This includes inquiries into how narratives mediate knowledge about cognition, the subject of her new book Out of Mind: Mode, Mediation, and Cognition in Twenty-First Century Narrative, from The Ohio State University Press. Torsa Ghosal is an assistant professor of English and creative writing at the California State University, Sacramento. Her experimental novella, Open Couplets, was published by Yoda Press, India. Her shorter works of fiction as well as essays on literature and culture appear in magazines like Literary Hub, Michigan Quarterly Review Online, Necessary Fiction, Catapult, and elsewhere. She co-hosts the Narrative for Social Justice podcast. You can find more details about her work at her website and follow her on Twitter @TorsaG. Image: © 2021 Saronik Bosu Music used in promotional material: ‘Waves' by Michael Korbin Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Kirstin L. Squint ed., "Conversations with LeAnne Howe" (UP of Mississippi, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 28, 2022 64:29

Conversations with LeAnne Howe (UP of Mississippi, 2022) is the first collection of interviews with the groundbreaking Choctaw author, whose genre-bending works take place in the US Southeast, Oklahoma, and beyond our national borders to bring Native American characters and themes to the global stage. Best known for her American Book Award-winning novel Shell Shaker (2001), LeAnne Howe (b. 1951) is also a poet, playwright, screenwriter, essayist, theorist, and humorist. She has held numerous honors including a Fulbright Distinguished Scholarship in Amman, Jordan, from 2010 to 2011, and she was the recipient of the Modern Language Association's first Prize for Studies in Native American Literatures, Cultures, and Languages for her travelogue, Choctalking on Other Realities (2013). Spanning the period from 2002 to 2020, the interviews in this collection delve deeply into Howe's poetics, her innovative critical methodology of tribalography, her personal history, and her position on subjects ranging from the Lone Ranger to Native American mascots. Two previously unpublished interviews, "'An American in New York' LeAnne Howe" (2019) and "Genre-Sliding on Stage with LeAnne Howe" (2020), explore unexamined areas of her personal history and how it impacted her creative work, including childhood trauma and her incubation as a playwright in the 1980s. These conversations along with 2019's Occult Poetry Radio interview also give important insights on the background of Howe's newest critically acclaimed work, Savage Conversations (2019), about Mary Todd Lincoln's hallucination of a "Savage Indian" during her time in Bellevue Place sanitarium. Taken as a whole, Conversations with LeAnne Howe showcases the development and continued impact of one of the most important Indigenous American writers of the twenty-first century. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Meredith Farmer and Jonathan D. S. Schroeder, "Ahab Unbound: Melville and the Materialist Turn" (U Minnesota Press, 2021)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 27, 2022 67:49

Today's guests are Meredith Farmer and Jonathan D.S. Schroeder, the co-editors of a bracing new collection of essays about the figure of Ahab in Melville's novel Moby-Dick. Meredith is the Assistant Teaching Professor of Core Literature at Wake Forest University. Her book Melville's Leaks: Science, Materialism, and the Reconstitution of Persons is under contract at Northwestern University Press. Jonathan is the Visiting Assistant Professor of American Studies at Brandeis University. His articles have been published in American Literature, American Literary History, and the Routledge Handbook of Reenactment Studies. His book Prisoners of Loss: An Atlantic History of Nostalgia, is under contract with Harvard University Press. Their new collection of essays is titled Ahab Unbound: Melville and the Materialist Turn (U Minnesota Press, 2021), published with the University of Minnesota Press. The collection includes contributions from a range of scholars from Christopher Castiglia, Samuel Otter, Steve Mentz, Jonathan Lamb, and Bonnie Honig, among others. John Yargo recently received his PhD in English literature from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, specializing in the environmental humanities and early modern culture. His articles have been published or are forthcoming in the Journal for Early Modern Culture Studies, Studies in Philology, and Shakespeare Studies. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Whitney Trettien, "Cut/Copy/Paste: Fragments from the History of Bookwork" (U Minnesota Press, 2021)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 27, 2022 38:23

Today's guest is Whitney Trettien whose book Cut/Copy/Paste: Fragments from the History of Bookwork was published through the University of Minnesota Press in 2022. Trettien is a Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania, and researches the history of the book spanning print and digital technologies. Cut/Copy/Paste explores makerspaces and collaboratories where paper media were cut up and reassembled into radical, bespoke publications. The book is complemented with a wide array of resources on early modern publishing available on the book's webpage hosted by the University of Minnesota Press. John Yargo recently received his PhD in English literature from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, specializing in the environmental humanities and early modern culture. His articles have been published or are forthcoming in the Journal for Early Modern Culture Studies, Studies in Philology, and Shakespeare Studies. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

José Rivera, "Lovesong (Imperfect) (Broadway Play Publishing, 2021)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 27, 2022 45:45

José Rivera's Lovesong (Imperfect) (Broadway Play Publishing, 2021) follows a passionate love triangle in an unusual situation: the US government has outlawed death, trees grow lights instead of leaves, and lovers sword fight as a form of flirtation. This play is a wildly theatrical, lyrical, surreal, and at times very dark work that will delight fans of Rivera's previous plays like Marisol and References to Salvador Dalí Make Me Hot, as well as new readers. In this conversation we discuss being inspired by Tennessee Williams, Rivera's research process for his screenplay The Motorcycle Diaries, and why he really wants to write a horror movie. Andy Boyd is a playwright based in Brooklyn, New York. He is a graduate of the playwriting MFA at Columbia University, Harvard University, and the Arizona School for the Arts. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Mahshid Mayar, "Citizens and Rulers of the World: The American Child and the Cartographic Pedagogies of Empire" (UNC Press, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 27, 2022 39:05

In this episode of New Books in Literary Studies, John Yargo spoke with Mahshid Mayar about how children's puzzles and schoolbooks at the turn of the 20th century helped shape U.S. political relations with the world. Professor Mayar is an assistant professor of American Studies at Bielefeld University and research associate at the English Department, Amherst College. Mahshid has just published Citizens and Rulers of the World: The American Child and the Cartographic Pedagogies of Empire, with the University of North Carolina Press. Citizens and Rulers of the World recovers how American children at the turn of the 20th century navigated knowledge about world geography in the shadow of the rapidly expanding American empire. John Yargo recently received his PhD in English literature from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, specializing in the environmental humanities and early modern culture. His articles have been published or are forthcoming in the Journal for Early Modern Culture Studies, Studies in Philology, and Shakespeare Studies. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Archives

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2022 15:12

Matt Poland talks about the meaning of archives, the nature of their construction, the physical environments that archives engender, and their emancipatory possibilities. Besides his own work on the archives of George Eliot, he talks about The Baltimore Uprising Archive Project, The Teaching Archive by Rachel Buurma and Laura Hefferman, Stirrings in the Archives by Wolfgang Ernst, No Archive Will Restore You by Julietta Singh, and Ann Laura Stoler's Along the Archival Grain. Matt is finishing his PhD in English at the University of Washington. His dissertation is titled “The Global Remediation of George Eliot and Charles Dickens: Books, Newspapers, Archives.” Matt's recent publications include “Uncovering the Contingencies of Archives” in the Journal of Victorian Culture Online. His article “Middlemarch in Melbourne” is forthcoming in the Middlemarch 150th anniversaryissue of George Eliot-George Henry Lewes Studies. Image: Hilma af Klint, Grupp III, nr 5. De storafigurmålningarna, Nyckeln tillhittillsvarande arbete, 1907Olja på duk150 × 118 cmHAK042© Stiftelsen hilma af Klints Verk Music used in promotional material: ‘Lighthouse' by King Capisce Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

W. Michelle Wang, "Eternalized Fragments: Reclaiming Aesthetics in Contemporary World Fiction" (Ohio State UP, 2020)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2022 55:55

Eternalized Fragments: Reclaiming Aesthetics in Contemporary World Fiction (Ohio State UP, 2020) explores the implications of treating literature as art--examining the evolving nature of aesthetic inquiry in literary studies, with an eye to how twentieth- and twenty-first-century world fiction challenges our understandings of form, pleasure, ethics, and other critical concepts traditionally associated with the study of aesthetics. Since postmodern and contemporary fiction tend to be dominated by disjunctures, paradoxes, and incongruities, this book offers an account of how and why readers choose to engage regardless, articulating the cognitive rewards such difficulties offer. By putting narrative and philosophical approaches in conversation with evolutionary psychology and contemporary neuroscience, W. Michelle Wang examines the value of attending to aesthetic experiences when we read literature and effectively demonstrates that despite the aesthetic's stumble in time, our ongoing love affair with fiction is grounded in our cognitive engagements with the text's aesthetic dimensions. Drawing on a diverse range of works by Gabriel García Márquez, Kazuo Ishiguro, Arundhati Roy, Jeanette Winterson, Jennifer Egan, Italo Calvino, Flann O'Brien, and Alasdair Gray, Eternalized Fragments lucidly renders the aesthetic energies at work in the novels' rich potentialities of play, the sublime's invitation to affective renegotiations, and beauty's polysemy in shaping readerly capacities for nuances.  Dr. Wang is Assistant Professor at Nanyang Technological University in Singapour.  Gargi Binju is a researcher at the University of Tübingen. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Marc David Baer, "German, Jew, Muslim, Gay: The Life and Times of Hugo Marcus" (Columbia UP, 2020)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2022 48:59

Hugo Marcus (1880–1966) was a man of many names and many identities. Born a German Jew, he converted to Islam and took the name Hamid, becoming one of the most prominent Muslims in Germany prior to World War II. He was renamed Israel by the Nazis and sent to the Sachsenhausen concentration camp before escaping to Switzerland. He was a gay man who never called himself gay but fought for homosexual rights and wrote queer fiction under the pen name Hans Alienus during his decades of exile. In German, Jew, Muslim, Gay: The Life and Times of Hugo Marcus (Columbia University Press, 2020), Marc David Baer uses Marcus's life and work to shed new light on a striking range of subjects, including German Jewish history and anti-Semitism, Islam in Europe, Muslim-Jewish relations, and the history of the gay rights struggle. Baer explores how Marcus created a unique synthesis of German, gay, and Muslim identity that positioned Johann Wolfgang von Goethe as an intellectual and spiritual model. Marcus's life offers a new perspective on sexuality and on competing conceptions of gay identity in the multilayered world of interwar and postwar Europe. His unconventional story reveals new aspects of the interconnected histories of Jewish and Muslim individuals and communities, including Muslim responses to Nazism and Muslim experiences of the Holocaust. An intellectual biography of an exceptional yet little-known figure, German, Jew, Muslim, Gay illuminates the complexities of twentieth-century Europe's religious, sexual, and cultural politics. Marc David Baer is professor of international history at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Armanc Yildiz is a doctoral candidate in Social Anthropology with a secondary field in Studies in Women, Gender and Sexuality at Harvard University. He is also the founder of Academics Write, where he supports scholars in their writing projects as a writing coach and developmental editor. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

The Career of a Writer: A Discussion with Douglas Richards

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2022 58:23

In this episode of How To Be Wrong, we talk with novelist New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Douglas Richards, about his career as a writer and how his started in the biotech industry. Doug is the author of 18 novels, his most recent being the science fiction thriller, Unidentified. Our conversation explores questions of changing paths in one's career and also the complex and difficult work that goes into being a writer. John W. Traphagan, Ph.D. is Professor and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Fellow in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is also a professor in the Program in Human Dimensions of Organizations. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Lust

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2022 15:39

Eric Wade speaks with Saronik about lust. They discuss how depictions of sexuality in medieval literature have persisted through literary traditions and shaped modern ideas of Orientalism and the sexual other. In the episode, Eric mentions a number of modern theorists, including Edward Said, Joseph Boone, Ghassan Moussawi, and Joseph Massad. Dr. Erik Wade—a visiting lecturer at the Universität-Bonn—researches the global origins of early medieval English ideas of sexuality and race. He is co-writing a book with Dr. Mary Rambaran-Olm, titled Race in Early Medieval England, out next year from Cambridge University Press. This week's image is a medieval illumination of the Dream of the Magi, showing the three kings hanging out naked in bed, in the Salzburg Missal, Regensburg ca. 1478-1489 [München, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Clm 15708 I, fol. 63r]. Music used in promotional material: ‘Streets of Sant'lvo' by Mid-Air Machine Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Teresa Palomo Acosta, "Tejanaland: A Writing Life in Four Acts" (Texas A&M UP, 2021)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2022 30:24

Tejanaland: A Writing Life in Four Acts (Texas A&M UP, 2021) by Teresa Palomo Acosta--poet, historian, author, and activist--spans three decades of her writing, from 1988 through 2018. The collection is divided into four parts: poems, essays, a children's story, and plays. Each work addresses cultural, historical, political, and gender realities that she experienced from her childhood to the present. The plays, set in the Central Texas Blackland Prairies where Acosta was raised, provide a unique Latina vision of memory, identity, and experience and are a vital contribution to Chicana feminist thought. The essays focus on Acosta's literary heroes Jovita González de Mireles, Sara Estela Ramírez, and Elena Zamora O'Shea, important writers who contributed significantly to Tejana literature and to Texas letters. The children's story, "Colchas, Colchitas," is based on Acosta's most notable poem, "My Mother Pieced Quilts," which pays homage to her mother and the many women of her generation who employed needles and thread, creating both practical and symbolic artifacts. This collection is a creative and, indeed, essential expansion of boundaries for what we think of as history, offering a unique and compelling look into the lived experiences and interior contemplations of a Texas artist well worth knowing. Readers will increase their understanding of Tejana experience in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Tejanaland promises to become an important addition to the cultural record, informing historical perspectives on the experiences of Tejana women and contributing significantly to the existing body of work from Tejana writers. Tiffany González is an Assistant Professor of History at James Madison University. She is a historian of Chicana/Latinx history, American politics, and social movements. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Adrienne Mayor, "Flying Snakes and Griffin Claws: And Other Classical Myths, Historical Oddities, and Scientific Curiosities" (Princeton UP, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2022 34:13

Adrienne Mayor is renowned for exploring the borders of history, science, archaeology, anthropology, and popular knowledge to find historical realities and scientific insights--glimmering, long-buried nuggets of truth--embedded in myth, legends, and folklore. Combing through ancient texts and obscure sources, she has spent decades prospecting for intriguing wonders and marvels, historical mysteries, diverting anecdotes, and hidden gems from ancient, medieval, and modern times. Flying Snakes and Griffin Claws: And Other Classical Myths, Historical Oddities, and Scientific Curiosities (Princeton UP, 2022) is a treasury of fifty of her most amazing and amusing discoveries. The book explores such subjects as how mirages inspired legends of cities in the sky; the true identity of winged serpents in ancient Egypt; how ghost ships led to the discovery of the Gulf Stream; and the beauty secrets of ancient Amazons. Other pieces examine Arthur Conan Doyle's sea serpent and Geronimo's dragon; Flaubert's obsession with ancient Carthage; ancient tattooing practices; and the strange relationship between wine goblets and women's breasts since the times of Helen of Troy and Marie Antoinette. And there's much, much more. Showcasing Mayor's trademark passion not to demythologize myths, but to uncover the fascinating truths buried beneath them, Flying Snakes and Griffin Claws is a wonder cabinet of delightful curiosities. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Joseph A. Boone, "The Homoerotics of Orientalism" (Columbia UP, 2014)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 22, 2022 71:12

One of the largely untold stories of Orientalism is the degree to which the Middle East has been associated with "deviant" male homosexuality by scores of Western travelers, historians, writers, and artists for well over four hundred years. And this story stands to shatter our preconceptions of Orientalism. To illuminate why and how the Islamicate world became the locus for such fantasies and desires, Boone deploys a supple mode of analysis that reveals how the cultural exchanges between Middle East and West have always been reciprocal and often mutual, amatory as well as bellicose. Whether examining European accounts of Istanbul and Egypt as hotbeds of forbidden desire, juxtaposing Ottoman homoerotic genres and their European imitators, or unlocking the homoerotic encoding in Persian miniatures and Orientalist paintings, this remarkable study models an ethics of crosscultural reading that exposes, with nuance and economy, the crucial role played by the homoerotics of Orientalism in shaping the world as we know it today. A contribution to studies in visual culture as well as literary and social history, The Homoerotics of Orientalism (Columbia UP, 2014) draws on primary sources ranging from untranslated Middle Eastern manuscripts and European belles-lettres to miniature paintings and photographic erotica that are presented here for the first time. Joseph Allen Boone is a professor of English and gender studies at the University of Southern California and the author of Libidinal Currents: Sexuality and the Shaping of Modernism and Tradition Counter Tradition: Love and the Form of Fiction. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the National Humanities Center, the Huntington, the Stanford Humanity Center, and the American Council of Learned Societies and has been in residency at the Liguria Center at Bogliasco, the Rockefeller-Bellagio Center, and the Valparaiso Foundation. Morteza Hajizadeh is a Ph.D. graduate in English from the University of Auckland in New Zealand. His research interests are Cultural Studies; Critical Theory; Environmental History; Medieval (Intellectual) History; Gothic Studies; 18th and 19th Century British Literature. YouTube Channel. Twitter. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

William Ian Miller, "Outrageous Fortune: Gloomy Reflections on Luck and Life" (Oxford UP, 2020)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 22, 2022 53:00

In Outrageous Fortune: Gloomy Reflections on Luck and Life (Oxford UP, 2020), William Ian Miller offers his reflections on the perverse consequences, indeed often the opposite of intended effects, of so-called 'good things'. Noted for his remarkable erudition, wit, and playful pessimism, Miller here ranges over topics from personal disasters to literary and national ones. Drawing on a truly immense store of knowledge encompassing literature, philosophy, theology, and history, he excavates the evidence of human anxieties around scarcity in all its forms (from scarcity of food to luck to where we stand in the eyes of others caught in a game of musical chairs we often do not even know we are playing). With wit and sensitivity, along with a large measure of fearless self-scrutiny, he points to and invites us to recognize the gloomy, neurotic, despondent tendencies of reasonably sentient human life. The book is a careful examination of negative beliefs, inviting an experience of bleak fellow-feeling among the author, the reader and many a hapless soul across the centuries. Just what makes you more nervous, he asks, a run of good luck, or a run of bad? William Domnarski is a longtime lawyer who before and during has been a literary guy, with a Ph.D. in English. He's written five books on judges, lawyers, and courts, two with Oxford, one with Illinois, one with Michigan, and one with the American Bar Association. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Justin Gautreau, "The Last Word: The Hollywood Novel and the Studio System" (Oxford UP, 2020)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 21, 2022 53:02

Justin Gautreau's book The Last Word: The Hollywood Novel and the Studio System (Oxford UP, 2020) argues that the Hollywood novel opened up space for cultural critique of the film industry at a time when the industry lacked the capacity to critique itself. While the young studio system worked tirelessly to burnish its public image in the wake of celebrity scandal, several industry insiders wrote fiction to fill in what newspapers and fan magazines left out. Throughout the 1920s and 1930s, these novels aimed to expose the invisible machinery of classical Hollywood cinema, including not only the evolving artifice of the screen but also the promotional discourse that complemented it. As likeminded filmmakers in the 1940s and 1950s gradually brought the dark side of the industry to the screen, however, the Hollywood novel found itself struggling to live up to its original promise of delivering the unfilmable. By the 1960s, desperate to remain relevant, the genre had devolved into little more than erotic fantasy of movie stars behind closed doors, perhaps the only thing the public couldn't already find elsewhere. Still, given their unique ability to speak beyond the institutional restraints of their time, these earlier works offer a window into the industry's dynamic creation and re-creation of itself in the public imagination. William Domnarski is a longtime lawyer who before and during has been a literary guy, with a Ph.D. in English. He's written five books on judges, lawyers, and courts, two with Oxford, one with Illinois, one with Michigan, and one with the American Bar Association. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

The Hyperlocal

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 21, 2022 14:17

Nicholas Birns talks about ‘the hyperlocal', a modality of American journalism in the early 1990s that he adapts to characterize a flexible and transposable concept of the local used in eighteenth and nineteenth century British and American literatures. Nicholas Birns teaches at the Center for Applied Liberal Arts at New York University. He is the author of The Hyperlocal in Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century Literary Space (Lexington, 2019). With Louis Klee, he is currently coexisting a companion to the Australian novel to be published by Cambridge University Press. Image: “The Hyperlocal” © 2021 Saronik Bosu Music used in promotional material: ‘It All Begins Here' by Borrtex Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Sara Austin, "Monstrous Youth: Transgressing the Boundaries of Childhood in the United States" (Ohio State UP, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 20, 2022 50:30

In Monstrous Youth: Transgressing the Boundaries of Childhood in the United States (Ohio State Press, 2022), Sara Austin traces the evolution of monstrosity as it relates to youth culture from the 1950s to the present day to spotlight the symbiotic relationship between monstrosity and the bodies and identities of children and adolescents. Examining comics, films, picture books, novels, television, toys and other material culture—including Monsters, Inc. and works by Mercer Mayer, Maurice Sendak, R. L. Stine, and Stephanie Meyer—Austin tracks how the metaphor of monstrosity excludes, engulfs, and narrates difference within children's culture. Analyzing how cultural shifts have drastically changed our perceptions of both what it means to be a monster and what it means to be a child, Austin charts how the portrayal and consumption of monsters corresponds to changes in identity categories such as race, sexuality, gender, disability, and class. In demonstrating how monstrosity is leveraged in service of political and cultural movements, such as integration, abstinence-only education, and queer rights, Austin offers insight into how monster texts continue to reflect, interpret, and shape the social discourses of identity within children's culture. Rebekah Buchanan is an Associate Professor of English and Director of English Education at Western Illinois University. Her research focuses on feminism, activism, and literacy practices in youth culture, specifically through zines and music. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Paul Van Der Velde, "Life Under the Palms: The Sublime World of the Anti-Colonialist Jacob Haafner" (NUS Press, 2020)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 20, 2022 46:04

Jacob Gotfried Haafner (1754–1809) was one of the most popular European travel writers of the early nineteenth century, writing in the Romantic mode. A Dutch citizen, Haafner spent more than twenty years of his early life living outside of Europe, in India, Ceylon, Mauritius, Java, and South Africa. Books like his popular Travels in a Palanquin were translated into the major European languages, and his essays against the work of Christian missionaries in Asia stirred up great controversy. Haafner worked to spread understanding of the cultures he'd come to know in his journeys, promoting European understanding of Indian literature, myth, and religion, translating the Ramayana into Dutch. In Life Under the Palms: The Sublime World of the Anti-Colonialist Jacob Haafner (NUS Press, 2020), Paul van der Velde tells an affecting story of a young man who made a world for himself along the Coromandel Coast, in Ceylon and Calcutta, but who returned to Europe to live the last years of his life in Amsterdam, suffering an acute nostalgia for Asia. This is compelling reading for anyone interested in European response to the cultures of Asia. Cresa Pugh is a PhD Candidate in sociology and social policy at Harvard University. For more information visit scholar.harvard.edu/cresa and follow her on Twitter @CresaPugh. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Brian Kulick, "The Secret Life of Theater: On the Nature and Function of Theatrical Representation" (Routledge, 2019)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 20, 2022 64:58

Unlike many books that examine the how of making theater, Brian Kulick's The Secret Life of Theater: On the Nature and Function of Theatrical Representation (Routledge, 2019) examines the why. Using Jorge Luis Borges' story Averroes's Search as a guide, Kulick defines theatre via its proximity to play, ritual, imitation, and religion, all of which share elements of theatricality. He then takes us on a whirlwind tour of theatrical history by examining key stage moments from some classic works of theater, from Agamemnon to Angels in America. Finally, Kulick looks at theater's changing relationship to fellow-feeling, whether pity, sympathy, or empathy, and articulates how the union of thought and feeling is a key insight of theatrical representation. By rekindling our sense of fellow-feeling and allowing us to see the world anew, Kulick suggests theater may provide valuable emotional and intellectual resources for our troubled times. Andy Boyd is a playwright based in Brooklyn, New York. He is a graduate of the playwriting MFA at Columbia University, Harvard University, and the Arizona School for the Arts. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

James Uden, "Worlds of Knowledge in Women's Travel Writing" (Ilex Foundation, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 16, 2022 44:53

On February 1st, 1936, Begum Hasrat Mohani, famed Indian writer and independence activist, sends the first of several letters to her daughter. She's traveling on the Hajj, passing through Iran and Iraq on her way to Mecca. Along the way, she writes to her daughter, noting the sights and sounds she experiences on her pilgrimage–and give us a glimpse into a different kind of travel writing, from a different kind of travel writer. Those letters are the subject of Daniel Majchrowicz's chapter in Worlds of Knowledge in Women's Travel Writing (Ilex Foundation: 2022), edited by James Uden. The book covers travel writing by women, mostly in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, as they travel through Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Both James and Daniel join us today to talk about their book, and their respective chapters. In this interview, we talk about what makes these examples of travel writing so interesting, and what the genre of travel writing means today after two years of travel restrictions. James Uden is Associate Professor of Classical Studies at Boston University.researches and writes about Latin literature and the transformation of ancient ideas in later eras, especially the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. He has published essays on a broad range of topics, including Catullus, Virgil, love elegy, travel literature, and ancient fable. His first book, The Invisible Satirist: Juvenal and Second-Century Rome (Oxford University Press: 2014), offers a new interpretation of the poems of Juvenal, showing how these texts responded to changing conceptions of Roman identity and contemporary trends in Greek rhetoric and philosophy. His second book, Spectres of Antiquity: Classical Literature and the Gothic, 1740-1830 (Oxford University Press: 2020) explores the work of British and American novelists of the eighteenth century. Daniel Majchrowicz is Assistant Professor of South Asian Literature and Culture at Northwestern University. His research considers the history and culture of Muslims and Islam in South Asia with an emphasis on Urdu literature, travel writing, popular culture, and language politics. He is a translator from Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi, and Persian, and currently the director of the South Asia Research Forum. Daniel is also an editor of the forthcoming Three Centuries of Travel Writing by Muslim Women (Indiana University Press: 2022) You can find more reviews, excerpts, interviews, and essays at The Asian Review of Books, including its review of Worlds of Knowledge in Women's Travel Writing. Follow on Facebook or on Twitter at @BookReviewsAsia. Nicholas Gordon is an associate editor for a global magazine, and a reviewer for the Asian Review of Books. He can be found on Twitter at@nickrigordon. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Juwen Zhang, "The Dragon Daughter and Other Lin Lan Fairy Tales" (Princeton UP, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 16, 2022 67:08

The Dragon Daughter and Other Lin Lan Fairy Tales (Princeton University Press, 2022) by Dr. Juwen Zhang brings together forty-two magical Chinese tales, most appearing for the first time in English. These stories have been carefully selected from more than a thousand originally published in the early twentieth century under the pseudonyms Lin Lan and Lady Lin Lan—previously unknown in the West, and now acclaimed as the Brothers Grimm of China. The birth of the tales began in 1924, when one author, Li Xiaofeng, published a set of literary stories under the Lin Lan pen name, an alias that would eventually be shared by an editorial team. Together, this group gathered fairy tales (tonghua) from rural regions across China. Combining traditional oral Chinese narratives with elements from the West, the selections in this collection represent different themes and genres—from folk legends to comic tales. Characters fall for fairies, experience predestined love, and have love/hate relationships with siblings. Garden snails and snakes transform into cooking girls, and dragon daughters construct houses. An introduction offers historical and social context for understanding the role that the Lin Lan stories played in modern China. This interview was conducted by Dr. Miranda Melcher whose doctoral work focused on post-conflict military integration, understanding treaty negotiation and implementation in civil war contexts, with qualitative analysis of the Angolan and Mozambican civil wars. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

83* Elizabeth Ferry and John Plotz on Zadie Smith

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 16, 2022 27:35

John and Elizabeth look back at Recall This Book's terrific 2019 conversation with Zadie Smith , so you may want to listen to that again before proceeding Elizabeth and John try their best to unpack Zadie Smith's take on sincerity, authenticity and human sacredness; the “golden ticket” dirty secret behind our hypocritical academic meritocracy; surveillance capitalism as the “biggest capital grab of human experience in history;” and her genealogy of the novel. If we had to sum the day up with a few adjectives: funny, provocative, resplendent, chill, generous, cantankerous. Discussed in this episode: Tony Judt, Postwar Richard Hoggart, The Uses of Literacy Nicholas Lehmann, The Big Test Elizabeth Strout, Olive Kitteridge Doris Lessing The Fifth Child Muriel Spark, The Girls of Slender Means Stephen McCauley (with JP on RTB) Barbara Pym and the Comic Novel Hilary Mantel, Beyond Black (and others…) Joseph O'Neill, Netherland J. P. Toussaint, The Bathroom Virginia Woolf, The Common Reader, A Room of One's Own, “Moments of Being” Philip Roth, The Counterlife, Exit Ghost Listen to the episode here: You can read the transcript here: RTB 15x Ferry and Plotz on ZS Elizabeth Ferry is Professor of Anthropology at Brandeis University. Email: ferry@brandeis.edu. John Plotz is Barbara Mandel Professor of the Humanities at Brandeis University and co-founder of the Brandeis Educational Justice Initiative. Email: plotz@brandeis.edu. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Adam Grener, "Improbability, Chance, and the Nineteenth-Century Realist Novel" (Ohio State UP, 2020)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 16, 2022 57:37

In Improbability, Chance, and the Nineteenth-Century Realist Novel (Ohio State UP, 2020), Adam Grener advances a new approach to evaluating realism in fiction by arguing that nineteenth-century literary realism shifted attention to the historical and social dimensions of probability in the period's literature. In an era in which probability was increasingly defined by statistical concepts of aggregation and abstraction, the realist writers discussed here turned to chance and improbability to address representational problems of contingency, difference, and scale. Contemporary thinking about probability came to recognize the variability and even randomness of the world while also discovering how patterns and order reemerge at scale. Reading chance as a tension between randomness and order, Grener shows how novels by Jane Austen, Sir Walter Scott, Charles Dickens, Anthony Trollope, and Thomas Hardy resist the demands of probabilistic representation and develop strategies for capturing cultural particularity and historical transformation. These authors served their visions of realism by tactically embracing improbability in the form of coincidences, fatalism, supernaturalism, and luck. Understanding this strategy helps us to appreciate how realist novels work to historicize the social worlds and experiences they represent and asks us to rethink the very foundation of realism. Su Min Kim is an independent scholar of nineteenth-century British literature. Her research focuses on the intersections of literary and mathematical history in nineteenth-century Europe. She is also a freelance writer and polyglot. For more conversations on her research, writing, and foreign languages, contact her at sumin.kim@u.nus.edu. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

James Joyce and Catherine Flynn (ed.), "The Cambridge Centenary Ulysses: The 1922 Text with Essays and Notes" (Cambridge UP, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 15, 2022 48:35

James Joyce's Ulysses is considered one of the greatest novels of the twentieth century. The Cambridge Centenary Ulysses: The 1922 Text with Essays and Notes (Cambridge UP, 2022) - published to celebrate the book's first publication - helps readers to understand the pleasures of this monumental work and to grapple with its challenges. Copiously equipped with maps, photographs, and explanatory footnotes, it provides a vivid and illuminating context for the experiences of Leopold Bloom, Stephen Dedalus, and Molly Bloom, as well as Joyce's many other Dublin characters, on June 16, 1904. Featuring a facsimile of the historic 1922 Shakespeare and Company text, this version also includes Joyce's own errata as well as references to amendments made in later editions. Each of the eighteen chapters of Ulysses is introduced by a leading Joyce scholar. These richly informative pieces discuss the novel's plot and allusions, while also explaining crucial questions that have puzzled and tantalized readers over the last hundred years. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Ghazal

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 14, 2022 14:54

Manan Kapoor talks about the Ghazal, the medieval Arabic poetic form which travelled to the Indian subcontinent in the 12th century and flourished there ever since. He focuses on the work of Agha Shahid Ali, the Kashmiri-American poet who perfected the art of the ghazal in the English language. Kapoor's biography of Shahid, A Map of Longings, was published earlier this year. Particular references are made to the poem “In Arabic” from Shahid's collection Call me Ishmael Tonight, the ghazals sung by Begum Akhtar which greatly influenced Shahid's work, and English ghazals written by poets like Adrienne Rich which he critiqued. Manan Kapoor is an Indian writer and translator. A Map of Longings: The Life and Works of Agha Shahid Ali (Vintage, Penguin Random House India) is his latest work. His debut novel The Lamentations of a Sombre Sky was shortlisted for Sahitya Akademi's Yuva Puruskar 2017. In 2019, he was a writer-in-residence at Sangam House Writers' Residency. His writings have appeared in The Caravan Magazine, Boston Review, The Hindu, Stockholm Review of Literature, Scroll, The Wire, and Firstpost among others. He lives in Chandigarh. Image: “Gazelle” © 2021 Saronik Bosu (The word ‘ghazal' and ‘gazelle' share a root in Arabic, the poetic form compared originally to the lament of a wounded gazelle). Music used for promotional material: “Raga Kirwani” on the Sarod by Ustad Ali Akbar Khan Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Stan Lai, "Selected Plays of Stan Lai" (U Michigan Press, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 14, 2022 52:52

The Selected Plays of Stan Lai (U Michigan Press, 2022) collects a cross-section from the four-decade career of one of the major dramatists of our time. Lai's works, including Secret Love in Peach Blossom Land, are famous throughout the Sinophone world, having been performed in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Mainland China. Many lines from his plays have become almost proverbial, quoted by academics and cab drivers alike. The plays collected here are translated by Lai himself, and are suitable for performance (in addition to being a playwright and director, Lai is a theatre scholar with a Ph.D. from UC Berkeley). They retain the humor, theatricality, and pathos that have made Lai one of Asia's most popular playwrights. In this interview we discuss Lai's childhood between the US and Taiwan, as well as his semi-improvised method of playwrighting.  Andy Boyd is a playwright based in Brooklyn, New York. He is a graduate of the playwriting MFA at Columbia University, Harvard University, and the Arizona School for the Arts. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

On Koans

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 10, 2022 54:10

Corey Ichigen Hess is an ordained Zen monk and body therapist. He lived a monastic life for many years at Sogenji Zen Monastery in Okayama, Japan. He teaches meditation classes and works with individual clients doing private embodiment process coaching sessions, Sourcepoint Therapy, Structural Integration, and Biodynamic Craniosacral therapy at his home on Whidbey Island in Langley, Washington. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Racial Affect

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 9, 2022 14:14

Oishani Sengupta talks about the felt experiences of racism, especially as they are represented in Victorian literature and its contemporary readership, which is the subject of her research. The conversation ranges from the novels of H. Rider Haggard and Charles Dickens to the felt experience of caste, as analyzed in the work of scholars like Junaid Shaikh. Oishani Sengupta (@oishani on Twitter) is a PhD candidate at the University of Rochester exploring histories of racial affect and visual print culture in the nineteenth century British empire. Also the project coordinator of the William Blake Archive, she looks closely at racist illustration practices and their central role in colonial politics. Image: Cover of the first French edition of H. Rider Haggard's King Solomon's Mines Music used in promotional material: ‘Last Sigh' by Holy Pain Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Mary Beth Willard, "Why It's Ok to Enjoy the Work of Immoral Artists" (Routledge, 2021)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 8, 2022 69:14

The #metoo movement has forced many fans to consider what they should do when they learn that a beloved artist has acted immorally. One natural thought is that fans ought to give up the artworks of immoral artists, but according to Mary Beth Willard, it's hard to find good reasons to do so. In Why It's OK to Enjoy the Work of Immoral Artists (Routledge, 2021), she contends that because most boycotts of artists won't succeed, there's no ethical reason to do so most of the time. She then argues that canceling artists is ethically risky because it encourages moral grandstanding. In this interview, Allison Leigh talks to Mary Beth Willard about the differences between enjoyment and engagement when it comes to immoral artists, as well as whether we should enjoy artworks that have immoral outlooks and behaviors embedded in them. Their conversation ranges from the problems associated with collective versus individual actions, the positive effects that giving up the work of immoral artists may have for shifting cultural norms, and the distinction between public and private enjoyment. Allison Leigh is Associate Professor of Art History and the SLEMCO/LEQSF Regents Endowed Professor in Art & Architecture at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Her research explores masculinity in European and Russian art of the eighteenth through the early twentieth centuries. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

A Newly Discovered Essay by Fredrick Douglass: "Slavery" (1894-1895)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 7, 2022 38:43

Today's guest is Leslie Leonard, who received their doctorate in American Studies and 19th C. American Literature from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Their dissertation, The Burdens and Blessings of Responsibility: Duty and Community in Nineteenth-Century America, is a study of the emergent idea of personal responsibility as it conflicted with more established ideas of duty in the writings of Herman Melville, and Harriet Jacobs. Drawing on a range of sources –works of literature, theology, domestic manuals, labor pamphlets – their research shows how many Americans began to conceive of moral responsibility as distinct from both duty and rules of behavior prescribed by traditional social roles. Today, we are discussing Leslie's discovery of an unpublished text by Frederick Douglass, an essay titled “Slavery,” which appeared in the fall 2021 issue of J19: The Journal of Nineteenth-Century Americanists. John Yargo recently received his PhD in English literature from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, specializing in the environmental humanities and early modern culture. His articles have been published or are forthcoming in the Journal for Early Modern Culture Studies, Studies in Philology, and Shakespeare Studies. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Resonance

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 6, 2022 12:31

Kim speaks with Julie Beth Napolin about Resonance. Julie Beth's book The Fact of Resonance: Modernist Acoustics and Narrative Form (Fordham UP, 2020) explores resonance and sound in modern literature. In the episode she references Jean-Luc Nancy's book Listening (Fordham UP, 2007), Inayat Khan's The Mysticism of Sound and Music (Shambala Publications, 1996), the music of Toru Takemitsu, and Damo Suzuki´s “sound carriers.” In our longer conversation she talked about Naomi Waltham-Smith's new book, Shattering Biopolitics: Militant Listening and the Sound of Life (Fordham UP, 2021) Julie Beth is an Associate Professor of Digital Humanities at The New School. She also makes music under the name Meridians. You can listen on Sound Cloud! This week's image is a simulation of interference between two sound waves in two-dimensions made by Ibrahim S. Souki, used under a Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike License, from Wikimedia Commons. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Andy Hines, "Outside Literary Studies: Black Criticism and the University" (U Chicago Press, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 6, 2022 71:39

This striking contribution to Black literary studies examines the practices of Black writers in the mid-twentieth century to revise our understanding of the institutionalization of literary studies in America.  In Outside Literary Studies: Black Criticism and the University (U Chicago Press, 2022), Andy Hines uncovers a vibrant history of interpretive resistance to university-based New Criticism by Black writers of the American left. These include well-known figures such as Langston Hughes and Lorraine Hansberry as well as still underappreciated writers like Melvin B. Tolson and Doxey Wilkerson. In their critical practice, these and other Black writers levied their critique from “outside” venues: behind the closed doors of the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, in the classroom at a communist labor school under FBI surveillance, and in a host of journals. From these vantages, Black writers not only called out the racist assumptions of the New Criticism, but also defined Black literary and interpretive practices to support communist and other radical world-making efforts in the mid-twentieth century. Hines's book thus offers a number of urgent contributions to literary studies: it spotlights a canon of Black literary texts that belong to an important era of anti-racist struggle, and it fills in the pre-history of the rise of Black studies and of ongoing Black dissent against the neoliberal university. Brittney Edmonds is an Assistant Professor of Afro-American Studies at UW-Madison. I specialize in 20th and 21st century African American Literature and Culture with a special interest in Black Humor Studies. Read more about my work at brittneymichelleedmonds.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Mickle Maher, "Six Plays" (Agate Press, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 3, 2022 58:57

6 Plays (Agate Press, 2022) collects six plays written over a twenty year period by playwright Mickle Maher. Maher is a legend of the Chicago theatre. He is a founder of Theater Oobleck, which has produced many of his plays since their founding as a student theatre group at the University of Michigan in the 1980s. Maher's plays often riff on an existing literary or theatrical classic (Shakespeare's The Tempest in Spirits to Enforce, Chekhov's Cherry Orchard in The Hunchback Variations) but they're never inaccessibly academic. Rather, they invite audiences into a playful, funny, profoundly moving dialogue with canonical works. In this discussion, we talk about the founding of Theater Oobleck, Maher's teaching methodology, and why the Faust myth spoke to him so profoundly during a time of personal crisis.  Andy Boyd is a playwright based in Brooklyn, New York. He is a graduate of the playwriting MFA at Columbia University, Harvard University, and the Arizona School for the Arts. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

82* Zadie Smith in Focus (JP)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 2, 2022 54:28

In this 2019 episode, John interviews the celebrated British writer Zadie Smith. The conversation quickly moves through Brexit (oh, the inhumanity!) and what it means to be a London–no, a Northwest London–writer before arriving at her case against identity politics. That case is bolstered by a discussion of Hannah Arendt on the difference between who and what a person is. Zadie and John also touch on the purpose of criticism and why it gets harder to hate as you (middle) age. She reveals an affection for “talkies” (as a “90's kid,” she can't help her fondness for Quentin Tarantino); asks whether young novelists in England need to write a book about Henry VIII just to break into bookstores; hears Hegel talking to Kierkegaard, and Jane Austen failing to talk to Jean Genet. Lastly, in Recallable Books, Zadie recommends Jean-Philippe Toussaint's The Bathroom. Transcript of the episode here. Mentioned: Zadie Smith, White Teeth, NW, Swing Time, “Two Paths for the Novel” “Embassy of Cambodia,” Joni Mitchell: Some Notes on Attunement” “Zadie Smith on J G Ballard's Crash“ Willa Cather, Song of the Lark (1915, revised 1932) Elif Batuman, The Idiot Charlotte Bronte, The Professor and Villette George Eliot, Middlemarch Pauline Kael, various film reviews Quentin Tarantino, Once Upon a Time…In Hollywood Ursula Le Guin, “The Story's Where I Go: An Interview” Doris Lessing, The Fifth Child Hilary Mantel, Beyond Black and Wolf Hall Dexter Filkins, “The Moral Logic of Humanitarian Intervention” (on Samantha Power) Patti Smith, Just Kids Elizabeth Strout, Olive Kitteridge, Olive Again Gary Winick (dir.), Thirteen Going on Thirty (starring Jennifer Garner, not Anne Hathaway) Sally Rooney, Normal People Toyin Ojih Odutola Matthew Lopez, The Inheritance Jean-Philippe Toussaint, The Bathroom  Elizabeth Ferry is Professor of Anthropology at Brandeis University. Email: ferry@brandeis.edu. John Plotz is Barbara Mandel Professor of the Humanities at Brandeis University and co-founder of the Brandeis Educational Justice Initiative. Email: plotz@brandeis.edu. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Realism

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 2, 2022 18:03

William Ghosh talks to Saronik about Realism, and how it can both be subtly conservative and effectively radical, depending on its use. He takes us through realist tactics in texts ranging from V.S. Naipaul's A Bend in the River to Virginie Despentes's Vernon Subutex. William Ghosh teaches Victorian and Modern literature and Literary Theory at Jesus College, University of Oxford. His first book, V.S. Naipaul, Caribbean Writing, and Caribbean Thought was published by OUP in October 2020. At present he is working on a book on the British writer Penelope Fitzgerald, and on a multimedia project about Caribbean poetry and poetics. Image: ‘Still Life with Corn' by Charles Ethan Porter Music used in promotional material: ‘Made in the City' by Ed Askew Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Peter C. Baker, "Planes" (Knopf, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 1, 2022 43:41

An interview with debut novelist Peter C Baker. Planes (Knopf, 2022) is the story of a global crime unfolding principally in the domestic lives of two women, Amira, an Italian convert to Islam living in Rome, and Mel, a school board member in North Carolina. Amira is a direct victim of the crime of extraordinary rendition, her husband, Ayoub, having been abducted without criminal charges and taken first to Pakistan and then Morocco, where he was imprisoned and tortured. Ayoub's eventual return to Amira is a lesson in how trauma comes like a wave for all those in its path. Mel's life appears quieter. Her activist days behind her, she lives an ordinary suburban life, throwing herself into work on the school board and into a workmanlike affair that seems, at the surface, to have little effect on her family life. That is until the affair is discovered and her onetime partner on the school board is revealed to be deeply intwined with the rendition program that abducted Ayoub. Peter and I talk about how to write about torture outside of the torture room, our unwitting complicity with illegal rendition programs in the US, and our shared love of W.G. Sebald. Books Recommended in this episode: W.G. Sebald, The Rings of Saturn Marlen Haushofer, The Wall Chris Holmes is Chair of Literatures in English and Associate Professor at Ithaca College. He writes criticism on contemporary global literatures. His book, Kazuo Ishiguro as World Literature, is under contract with Bloomsbury Publishing. He is the co-director of The New Voices Festival, a celebration of work in poetry, prose, and playwriting by up-and-coming young writers. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Julia Molinari, "What Makes Writing Academic: Rethinking Theory for Practice" (Bloomsbury, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later May 31, 2022 81:04

Listen to this interview of Julia Molinari, lecturer in professional academic communication at The Open University (UK) and independent researcher. We talk her book What Makes Writing Academic: Rethinking Theory for Practice (Bloomsbury, 2022) and about the things people use academic writing for. Julia Molinari : "We need to ensure that teachers of academic writing have access to scholarship and can do the research that they need to do in order to sensitize themselves to the different ways of conceiving of writing. Because I see scholarship very much as a lever to the change that needs to happen in higher education. Scholarship means, for the teacher of EAP, knowing what has been written about academic writing and knowing that there isn't just one standard form, there isn't just one template that says, 'This is academic. This is not academic.' So, enabling practitioners to do research, to do the scholarship — this is something that requires an institutional commitment: people need to have time built into their contracts, they need to be literally paid to do the scholarship, to be aware of what's at stake when it comes to academic writing." The ebook editions of this book are available open access under a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 licence on bloomsburycollections.com. Open access was funded by Knowledge Unlatched. Contact Daniel at writeyourresearch@gmail.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Nathaniel Isaacson, "Celestial Empire: The Emergence of Chinese Science Fiction" (Wesleyan UP, 2017)

Play Episode Listen Later May 31, 2022 48:09

Chinese science fiction has been booming lately through the translation of books like Liu Cixin's The Three-Body Problem, but where did the current surge come from? In Celestial Empire: The Emergence of Chinese Science Fiction (Wesleyan University Press, 2017), Nathaniel Isaacson introduces the genre's origins in China and tracks its development from roughly 1904 to 1934. During that period, China's final dynasty, the Qing, came to an end amid European nations' increasing control of China, the Republic of China was established, and Japan conquered Manchuria while the Chinese Communist Party was established and grew into a major political-cultural force. Isaacson connects these political shifts to the establishment of science fiction in China through key works by authors like Lu Xun, Wu Jianren, and Lao She. In so doing, he shows how Chinese science fiction is connected to Edward Said's concept of Orientalism, depicting authors' struggles to subvert Orientalist attitudes toward China. Isaacson traces how Orientalism and its attendant colonialist projects were intertwined with Western scientific knowledge in such a way as to make science fiction a fruitful medium for cultural debates over China's role in the world. Nathaniel Isaacson is an Associate Professor of Modern Chinese Literature in the Department of Foreign Languages and Literature at North Carolina State University. His research interests include the history of Chinese science and science fiction, Chinese cinema, cultural studies, and literary translation. Nathaniel has published articles and translations in the Oxford Handbook of Modern Chinese Literatures, Osiris, Science Fiction Studies, Renditions, Pathlight, and Chinese Literature Today. His book, Celestial Empire: the Emergence of Chinese Science Fiction (2017), examines the emergence of sf in late Qing China. His current book project, Moving the People: the Aesthetics of Mass Transit in Modern China, examines narratives of development as a theme in modern Chinese literary and visual culture primarily through the figure of the train. Amanda Kennell is an Assistant Teaching Professor of International Studies at North Carolina State University. She writes about Japanese media and is currently completing Alice in Japanese Wonderlands: Translation, Adaptation, Mediation, a book about contemporary media and Japanese adaptations of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland novels. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Modernist Mushrooms

Play Episode Listen Later May 30, 2022 12:41

Shalini Sengupta thinks together ‘the mycological turn' in the humanities and the narrative and aesthetic work that mushrooms do in some modernist literature. She draws from Anna Tsing's The Mushroom at the End of the World and the research of Sam Solomon and Natalia Cecire. Modernist mushrooms, if they are a thing, exist in the writings of Alfred Kreymborg, Djuna Barnes, and Sylvia Plath, and the photography of Alfred Stieglitz. Shalini is a final year PhD student at the University of Sussex, UK. Her thesis explores the concept of modernist difficulty in British and diasporic poetry through the lens of intersectionality. Her academic writing have appeared/are forthcoming in Modernism/modernity Print Plus, Contemporary Women's Writing, and the Journal of British and Irish Innovative Poetry. In 2021, she was selected as a Ledbury Emerging Critic. Image Art by Saronik Bosu Music used in promotional material: ‘How Many' by Windmill Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

Cheryl Collins Isaac, "Spin," The Common magazine (Spring, 2022)

Play Episode Listen Later May 27, 2022 33:51

Cheryl Collins Isaac speaks to managing editor Emily Everett about her story “Spin,” which appears in The Common's new spring issue. “Spin” is about two Liberian immigrants making a new life in Appalachia. In this conversation, Cheryl talks about the inspiration behind this story: writing from music and toward beautiful, sensual language. She also discusses Liberia's interesting cultural history, her writing and revision process, and what it's like to do a writing residency in Edith Wharton's bedroom. Cheryl Collins Isaac immigrated to the United States in 1996 from Liberia, West Africa. She is a 2022 Edith Wharton Straw Dog Writer-in-Residence and the recipient of the 2020 James Baldwin Fellowship at MacDowell. She has had fiction, nonfiction, and poetry published in Chicago Quarterly Review, The Ocean State Review, Hawai`i Pacific Review, South Writ Large, Prime Number Magazine, and more. She earned her MFA in creative writing from the University of Tampa. Read Cheryl's story “Spin” in The Common at thecommononline.org/spin. Follow Cheryl on Twitter at @CherylCIsaac. The Common is a print and online literary magazine publishing stories, essays, and poems that deepen our collective sense of place. On our podcast and in our pages, The Common features established and emerging writers from around the world. Read more and subscribe to the magazine at thecommononline.org, and follow us on Twitter @CommonMag. Emily Everett is managing editor of the magazine and host of the podcast. Her debut novel is forthcoming from Putnam Books. Her stories appear in the Kenyon Review, Electric Literature, Tin House Online, and Mississippi Review. She holds an MA in literature from Queen Mary University of London, and a BA from Smith College. Say hello on Twitter @Public_Emily. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/literary-studies

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