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Pays des brumes

The Persistence of Poetic Realism in French Cinema of the Occupation

Barry Nevin

Abstract

Whereas the aesthetics and politics of poetic realism in French prewar cinema have been analyzed in depth, the extent to which poetic realism persisted in French cinema of the Occupation and the textual space that it created for spectators within this cultural context remain comparatively neglected. Responding to this critical oversight, this article analyzes Christian-Jaque's Voyage sans espoir (1943) and Jean Grémillon's Lumière d'été from three perspectives: first, it evinces iconography in each that was central to the 1930s poetic realist films directed by figures such as Marcel Carné, Jean Renoir, and Jacques Feyder; second, it illustrates how poetic realism's characteristic focus on gender was reconfigured during the Occupation; third, it determines how these aesthetic and social aspects spoke to French society under occupation. This article ultimately argues that poetic realist praxis persisted during the war years and constituted a major vector of resistance against German rule and the Vichy government.

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Posesión de Tiempo Inmemorial (Possession of Time Immemorial)

Tenants in Court and Proprietary Formalization. Rengo, Chile, 1820–1830

Víctor Brangier and Mauricio Lorca

Abstract

This study focuses on disputes between small and medium tenants, who sought to formalize old land rights. The context under study is Rengo Valley, Chile, between 1820 and 1830, where there was increasing pressure to clarify rights over possessions. The analysis of a sample of 31 trials showed the relevance of the judicial use of the figure Posesión de Tiempo Inmemorial (Possession of Time Immemorial). This was a resource derived from the value of possession in the Hispanic American agrarian legal culture, one that the litigants used strategically. This study's findings provide new data on the use of socially valued legal figures in justice to defend possession, thus contributing to the discussion on the dispossession of peasants in contexts of proprietary formalization.

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Romantic Love, Gender Imbalance and Feminist Readings in Iris Murdoch's The Sea, The Sea

Macarena García-Avello

Abstract

Even though Iris Murdoch's novels depict a profoundly patriarchal society, most scholars have generally failed to identify any feminist aspirations in her work. This article aims to reassess her legacy as a writer by analysing from a feminist perspective one of her most acclaimed novels, The Sea, The Sea (1978). The tension between the androcentric approach of a self-deluded male narrator and a female author whose worldview is strongly influenced by her gender results in a feminist critique which is not based on the recovery of a female voice, but on the exploration of patriarchy within the novel and the production of a feminist epistemology derived from a dialogue between Murdoch's fiction and philosophy.

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Senses and Gender in Modern and Ancient Greek Healing Rituals

Evy Johanne Håland

Abstract

This article presents ethnographic fieldwork combined with studies of historical sources to explore modern and ancient healing rituals in Greece. It focuses on the importance of the senses, especially smell, taste, and sight, in relation to gendered practices and beliefs about healing. In Greece, healing rituals are generally connected with the domestic sphere where women are the dominant agents of power. Based upon the author's fieldwork, the article presents the “female sphere” from the perspectives of female informants. It seeks to deconstruct male perceptions of women and their magic healing rituals that appear in ancient sources produced by men, by a comparison with the modern material.

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Urban Decay or the Uncanny Return of Dionysus

An Analysis of the Ruins in Shelley's ‘Ozymandias’

Roohollah Datli Beigi, Pyeaam Abbasi, and Zahra Jannessari Ladani

Abstract

Written in the familiar genre of ruin poems, Percy Bysshe Shelley's ‘Ozymandias’ (1818) is well-expressive of the poet's profound hatred of tyranny. One of the distinctive features of the poem is the vividly visual images it provides of the ruined statue and the desert as the setting of the poem. Focusing on the images of the desert and ruins, and using the concept of urban decay and mytho-archetypal notions, this study attempts to show that the ruins of the poem anticipate the modern phenomenon of urban decay as the return of the repressed in city-forms. However, what the poem presents as destruction, death, ruins and decay is in fact the potential of bringing about spring and regeneration. Reading this poem in the light of the mentioned concepts provides the reader with an understanding of the function of the ruins in Shelley's poems as an uncanny Dionysian defiance against both the tyranny of his age and the rationalism of the Enlightenment period.

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Whoso List to Find?

Hard Facts, Soft Data, and Women Who Count

Elizabeth Mazzola

Abstract

Seeing what Englishwomen saw in the early modern period brings them into view in a variety of new ways, many of them managed and enhanced by the machinery of cheap print. In contrast with Petrarchan poetry, which imagined women with fear and described love as plague, print established other models of health and wellness, and other ways of registering women's powers. Women known as searchers who were charged to enter houses and locate plague rather than flee from it shared their findings with town officials who printed up statistics in weekly Bills of Mortality. The searcher was both a ‘harbinger of disaster’ and a tool of recovery, and popular ballads of the time frequently deploy her example along with her abilities to avoid ruin and register signs of life. These ballads supply alternatives to Petrarchan demographics, and I examine the ways early modern female poets draw upon their methodology, too.

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Anti-Racism and Existential Philosophy

An interview with Kathryn Sophia Belle

Kathryn Sophia Belle and Edward O'Byrn

Kathryn Sophia Belle's (formerly Kathryn T. Gines’) publications engaged in this interview:

2003 (Fanon/Sartre 50 yrs) “Sartre and Fanon Fifty Years Later: To Retain or Reject the Concept of Race,” Sartre Studies International, Vol. 9, Issue 2 (2003): 55-67, https://doi.org/10.3167/135715503781800213.

2010 (Convergences) “Sartre, Beauvoir, and the Race/Gender Analogy: A Case for Black Feminist Philosophy” in Convergences: Black Feminism and Continental Philosophy, pages 35-51. Eds. Maria Davidson, Kathryn T. Gines, Donna Dale Marcano. New York: SUNY, 2010.

2011 (Wright/Legacy) “The Man Who Lived Underground: Jean-Paul Sartre and the Philosophical Legacy of Richard Wright,” Sartre Studies International, Vol. 17, Issue 2 (2011): 42-59, https://doi.org/10.3167/ssi.2011.170204.

2012 (Reflections) “Reflections on the Legacy and Future of Continental Philosophy with Regard to Critical Philosophy of Race,” The Southern Journal of Philosophy, Vol. 50, Issue 2 (June 2012): 329-344, https://doi.org/10.1111/j.2041-6962.2012.00109.x.

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Apprenticeship and Learning by Doing

The Role of Privileged Enclaves in Early Modern French Cities

Jeff Horn

Abstract

In France, formal guild training was not as ubiquitous a means of socializing young people into a trade as it has been portrayed by scholars. Guilds were limited geographically, and in many French cities privileged enclaves controlled by clerical or noble seigneurs curbed the sway of corporate structures, or even created their own. Eighteenth-century Bordeaux provides an extreme example of how limited guild training was in France's fastest-growing city. The clerical reserves of Saint-Seurin and Saint-André that housed much of the region's industrial production had quasi-corporate structures with far more open access and fewer training requirements. In Bordeaux, journeymen contested masters’ control over labor and masters trained almost no apprentices themselves. Formal apprenticeship mattered exceptionally little when it came to training people to perform a trade in Bordeaux.

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Bad Custom

The Meanings and Uses of a Legal Concept in Premodern Europe

Anthony Perron

The place and function of custom as a species of law—distinguished from custom as simply polite manners or cherished cultural traditions—has long been a source of research and debate among legal theorists and historians. One school of thought, reflecting the authority of written statute in modern jurisprudence, has relegated custom in a juridical sense to “primitive” societies, whereas proper law belongs to a world of state sovereignty. Other scholars have revisited the continuing validity of custom, including a trenchant body of work on the use (and manipulation) of custom in modern colonial regimes. At the same time, some have seen benefits in the acknowledgment of custom as a source of norms. A 2006 collection of articles, for instance, explored ways in which customary law might serve as a better foundation for the sustainable development of natural resources. As David Bederman has written, “Custom can be a signal strength for any legal system—preliterate or literate, primitive or modern.”

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Bad Customs, Civic Ordinances, and “Customary Time” in Medieval and Early Modern English Urban Law

Esther Liberman Cuenca

Abstract

This article examines 45 preambles in collections of urban customary law (called custumals) from 32 premodern towns in England between the twelfth and sixteenth centuries. Urban custom was the local law of English towns, and constituted traditions and privileges that gained legal force over time. How lawmakers conceived of “bad” custom—that is, the desuetude or corruption of custom—was crucial to the intellectual framework of urban law. Evidence from preambles shows that lawmakers rooted the legitimacy of their laws in “customary time,” which was the period from the supposed origins of their customs to their formalization in text. Lawmakers’ efforts to reinforce, ratify, and revise urban customs by making new custumals and passing ordinances were attempts to broaden their autonomy and respond to the possibility of “bad” custom.