A new inclusiveness, a heady freedom, grounded in the facts of mortality, inform Gail Mazur’s recent poems, as if making them has served as both a bunker and a promontory, a way to survive, and to be exposed to, the profound underlying subject of this book: a husband’s approaching death. The intimate particulars of a shared life are seen from a great height—and then there’s the underlife of the bunker: endurance, holding on, life as uncompromising reality. This new work, possessed by the unique devil-may-care intensity of someone writing at the end of her nerves, makes Figures in a Landscape feel radiant, visionary, and exhilarating, rather than elegiac. Mazur’s masterly fusion of abstraction with the facts of a life creates a coming to terms with what Yeats called “the aboriginal ice.”
When the hero of Defoe’s novel listens skeptically to this anecdote related by a French Roman Catholic priest, he little suspects that in less than a century the conversion of the Jews would become nothing short of a national project—not in France but in England. In this book, Michael Ragussis explores the phenomenon of Jewish conversion—the subject of popular enthusiasm, public scandal, national debate, and dubbed "the English madness" by its critics—in Protestant England from the 1790s through the 1870s.
Moving beyond the familiar catalog of anti-Semitic stereotypes, Ragussis analyzes the rhetoric of conversion as it was reinvented by the English in sermons, stories for the young, histories of the Jews, memoirs by Jewish converts, and popular novels. Alongside these texts and the countertexts produced by English Jews, he situates such writers as Edgeworth, Scott, Disraeli, Arnold, Trollope, and Eliot within the debate over conversion and related issues of race, gender, and nation-formation. His work reveals how a powerful group of emergent cultural projects—including a revisionist tradition of the novel, the new science of ethnology, and the rewriting of European history—redefined English national identity in response to the ideology of conversion, the history of the Jews, and "the Jewish question."
Figures of Conversion offers an entirely new way of regarding Jewish identity in nineteenth-century British culture and will be of importance not only to literary scholars but also to scholars of Judaic and religious studies, history, and cultural studies.
Figures of Resistance brings together the unpublished lectures and little-seen essays of internationally renowned theorist Teresa de Lauretis, spanning over twenty years of her finest work. Thirty years after the height of feminist theory, this collection invites us to reflect on the history of feminism and take a hard look at where it stands today. Selected essays include "Sexual Indifference and Lesbian Representation," "The Lure of the Mannish Lesbian," "Eccentric Subjects," "Habit Changes," "The Intractability of Desire," and the unpublished article "Figures of Resistance." An introduction from feminist film scholar Patricia White provides an overview of the development of de Lauretis's thought and of feminist theory over past decades.
Tim Cassedy’s fascinating study examines the role that language played at the turn of the nineteenth century as a marker of one’s identity. During this time of revolution (U.S., French, and Haitian) and globalization, language served as a way to categorize people within a world that appeared more diverse than ever. Linguistic differences, especially among English-speakers, seemed to validate the emerging national, racial, local, and regional identity categories that took shape in this new world order.
Focusing on six eccentric characters of the time—from the woman known as “Princess Caraboo” to wordsmith Noah Webster—Cassedy shows how each put language at the center of their identities and lived out the possibilities of their era’s linguistic ideas. The result is a highly entertaining and equally informative look at how perceptions about who spoke what language—and how they spoke it—determined the shape of communities in the British American colonies and beyond.
This engagingly written story is sure to appeal to historians of literature, culture, and communication; to linguists and book historians; and to general readers interested in how ideas about English developed in the early United States and throughout the English-speaking world.
An exploration of how film has made legible the Italian long ’68 as a moment of crisis and transition
Traditionally, the definition of political cinema assumes a relationship between cinema and politics. In contrast to this view, author Mauro Resmini sees this relationship as an impasse. To illustrate this theory, Resmini turns to Italian cinema to explore how films have reinvented the link between popular art and radical politics in Italy from 1968 to the early 1980s, a period of intense political and cultural struggles also known as the long ’68.
Italian Political Cinema conjures a multifaceted, complex portrayal of Italian society. Centered on emblematic figures in Italian cinema, it maps the currents of antagonism and repression that defined this period in the country’s history. Resmini explores how film imagined the possibilities, obstacles, and pitfalls that characterized the Italian long ’68 as a moment of crisis and transition. From workerism to autonomist Marxism to feminism, this book further expands the debate on political cinema with a critical interpretation of influential texts, some of which are currently only available in Italian.
A comprehensive and novel redefinition of political film, Italian Political Cinema introduces its audience to lesser-known directors alongside greats such as Pasolini, Bertolucci, Antonioni, and Bellocchio. Resmini offers access to untranslated work in Italian philosophy, political theory, and film theory, and forcefully advocates for the continued artistic and political relevance of these films in our time.
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