The Comparatist

Articles from Vol. 41, October

Carlos Merida's "Goce Emocional": An Aesthetics Proposal Circumventing the Space of Catastrophe of Mexican Nationalism
Toward the outskirts of Mexico City, a kind of monolith, serving as a memorial to Carlos Merida's muralist art, replicates what were once the artist's "Leyendas mexicanas" (1950-52; Mexican Legends): a series of plastic architectural plates designed...
Catastrophic Education: Saving the World with H. G. Wells
"Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe." H. G. Wells (Outline of History, 1100) Education is no less immune to catastrophe than any other area of life. A student who fails all of their courses because they...
Frank O'Hara: Salute to the French Negro Poet, Aime Cesaire
I. INTRODUCTION In the opening lines of "Ode: Salute to the French Negro Poets" (1958), midcentury American poet Frank O'Hara beckons: "From near the sea, like Whitman my great predecessor, I call/to the spirits of other lands to make fecund my...
Getting under Your Skin: Sebald on Chatwin and Flaubert
The melancholic turn of W.G. Sebald's prose has been a recurrent feature of critical commentary on his work: an early critical volume names Sebald the "Anatomist of Melancholy" (Gorner), as if to suggest that Sebald is pursuing the legacy of Robert...
Goodbye Crude World: The Aesthetics of Environmental Catastrophe in Michel Faber's the Book of Strange New Things and Edward Burtynsky's Oil Photographs
For Halloween in 2015, The Guardian published a piece on the fears of a range of authors including novelist Michel Faber. Faber recalled the sense of alarm he felt as a child while viewing a Christian inspirational film. It was set in a circus in which...
Literature, Catastrophe, and Numbers: Saadat Hasan Manto and Tahar Ben Jelloun
We are confronted every day with events that call for an ethically motivated response. To some extent this could be said of all events that affect human beings (and perhaps other species) for good or ill. But the events that strike most of us most...
Moderating Revolution: V.S. Srinivasa Sastri, Toussaint Louverture, and the Civility of Reform
In early autumn in 1869 in British India, two men were born who devoted their lives to the articulation of emergent political subjectivities in what would become, in 1947, independent India. The story of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, the political agitator...
On the Brink: Identity and Language in the Poetry of Arab-American Women
Almost a decade ago, Al Raida (lit. The Pioneer), a journal based out of the Lebanese American University, published an issue on "Arab Women Writing in English." Among its concerns, the journal hoped to highlight the problem of translating experience...
Overturning Catastrophes
The word catastrophe is derived from the Greek word katastrephein, meaning a "sudden turn" or "overturn" (from kata=down and strephein=turn). In Greek theatre, it designated the last parts of a tragedy, the moment when the action begins to unravel...
Racial Microbiopolitics: Flint Lead Poisoning, Detroit Water Shut Offs, and the "Matter" of Enfleshment
INTRODUCTION: FLINT, DETROIT, AND WATER REGULATION AS RACIAL MICROBIOPOLITICS In June 2013, the Detroit Water and Sewage Department (DWSD) cut off Flint's water supply in response to the city's proposal to reportedly save money by switching to The...
The Author's Heroes: Bulgakov's Moliere, and Other Deployments of World Literature Classics
In a letter to Carlyle from January 1, 1828, Goethe frets about the extent to which his German play about an Italian Renaissance poet, Tasso, "can be considered English" in its English translation. "You will greatly oblige me by informing me on this...
The Ghost Story in Mexican, Turkish and Bengali Fiction Bhut, Fantasma, Hayalet
Whatever one understands by the term "World Literature"--whether it is a pedagogy (Damrosch), a new period of fiction, a school of theory (Moretti 55) or a global franchise (Apter 17)--the allegations of Eurocentrism or an overtly Western-centered...
THE RUTLEDGE PRIZE 2016: For Graduate Students Giving Papers at the SCLA Conference
Each year the SCLA offers a prize of $500 for the most promising work presented at its annual conference by a graduate student. The essay is also considered for publication in The Comparatist. You may submit a paper for consideration for this award...
The Waterfall, the Whirlpool, and the Stage: "Boundaries of Americanness" in Poe's "A Descent into the Maelstrom"
... and sending forth to the winds an appalling voice, half shriek, half roar, such as not even the mighty cataract of Niagara ever lifts up in its agony to Heaven. --Edgar Allan Poe, "A Descent into the Maelstrom," 1841 Edgar Allan Poe...
Transculturality and the Gesta Romanorum in Light of Hartmann Von Aue's Gregorius and Heinrich Kaufringer's Verse Narratives
We have long recognized the enormous literary productivity of the genre of late medieval verse narratives. Wherever we look, we discover significant processes of reception, translation, adaptation, and modeling of older sources for the own purposes....
Troubled Waters: Liquid Memory in the Wake of Disaster
Artists who undertake the commemoration of a disaster are faced with a dizzying array of aesthetic choices that affect how a calamitous tragedy will be tacked to the fabric of collective memory. This essay considers the strikingly similar implications...
Truth Commissions and Unspoken Narratives in Gillian Slovo's Red Dust and David Park's the Truth Commissioner
Over the past two decades, truth recovery projects, which unearth information about systematic human rights violations, have become central to societies trying to move past mass conflict. Since the 1990s, the hope invested in truth recovery has become...
Witnessing Catastrophe, Interpreting Catastrophe
This issue focuses on catastrophe. It is a concept that calls out for a comparative approach; it compels and challenges us to think in an inter- and cross-disciplinary fashion. Thinking catastrophe today raises multiple questions. What constitutes...
Writing the Hyper-Disaster: Embodied and Engendered Narrative after Nuclear Disaster
The accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant on April 26, 1986 was caused by both faulty design and operator error (Kortov and Ustyantsev 12-13) and the resulting radioactive plume affected a broad swath of Europe, most dramatically in the area...
Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.