Welcome to our second three-issue volume of Projections. As with the first issue of the previous volume, I would like to acknowledge everyone who served as a referee for Projections last year. A list of their names follows below. I would also like to emphasize my gratitude for the outstanding work that associate editors Tim Smith and Aaron Taylor have been doing to make the review and production processes seamless.
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Fredy B.L. Tobing and Asra Virgianita
English abstract: This article analyzes the causes of low trade relations between Indonesia and Latin American states, arguing that dynamics of international political economy have opened opportunities to increase trade relations between those countries. Having good diplomatic and political relations with similar emerging economies, like Peru and Chile, should drive closer economic relations among them. A qualitative study was conducted using literature reviews, archival analysis, and in-depth interviews. Political will and lack of knowledge pertaining to the business character of each country hamper external relations. Thus, a functional multi-track diplomacy that incorporates state and non-state actors from various fields is crucial for enhancing economic relations among these countries. Trade relations can be particularly strengthened by maximizing cooperation among actors at various levels.
Spanish abstract: Este artículo analiza las débiles relaciones comerciales entre Indonesia y América Latina, argumentando que la dinámica de la economía política abre oportunidades para mejorar estas relaciones. Las buenas relaciones diplomáticas y políticas entre Perú y Chile, debería estrechar sus relaciones económicas. Pero la escasa voluntad política y falta de conocimiento del carácter empresarial de cada país, obstaculizan sus relaciones externas. La investigación incluyó revisión de literatura, análisis de archivos y entrevistas en profundidad. Los resultados subrayan la necesidad de una diplomacia funcional de múltiples rutas que incorpore instituciones estatales y no estatales de diversos campos para mejorar las relaciones económicas. Las relaciones comerciales particularmente pueden fortalecerse entre países maximizando su recíproca cooperación en cada nivel (diplomacia multinivel).
French abstract: Cet article analyse les causes de la faiblesse des relations commerciales entre l’Indonésie et les pays d’Amérique latine en faisant valoir que la dynamique de l’économie politique internationale a ouvert des opportunités pour stimuler les relations commerciales entre ces pays. Cette étude qualitative a été menée sur la base d’une étude de la littérature existante, d’analyses archivistiques et d’entretiens approfondis. Le manque de volonté politique et surtout de connaissances réciproques des atouts commerciaux de ces pays entravent leurs relations extérieures. Ainsi, une diplomatie fonctionnelle à plusieurs voies qui intègre des diplomaties étatiques et non-étatiques dans divers domaines est-elle cruciale pour améliorer leurs relations économiques. Les relations commerciales peuvent notamment être renforcées en maximisant la coopération entre ces pays à chaque niveau (diplomatie multi-niveaux).
The Medieval and Early Modern Origins
The popular narrative that the French relationship between the sexes is more emotionally rewarding than its American counterpart has entered into scholarly discourse over the past decades. Promoted by several well-known French feminist scholars, the narrative locates the particularity of the French relationship in its paradoxical structure: women are both equal and not equal to men. Sexual difference lies in the particular, which is subordinate to the universal value of equality. The narrative was most recently revived in the anti-#MeToo manifesto published in Le Monde in January 2018. This article surveys the narrative’s history, beginning with French feudal law and tracing it through some of its later iterations to highlight how it has long offered French women a way of performing femininity while exercising power. The emotional investment in this narrative explains why it continues to be accepted among at least some French intellectuals, whereas it is generally rejected by American feminists.
The relationship of the French king and royal mistress, complementary but unequal, embodied the Gallic singularity; the royal mistress exercised a civilizing manner and the soft power of women on the king’s behalf. However, both her contemporaries and nineteenth- and early twentieth-century historians were uncomfortable with the mistress’s political power. Furthermore, paradoxical attitudes about French womanhood have led to analyses of her role that are often contradictory. Royal mistresses have simultaneously been celebrated for their civilizing effect in the realm of culture, chided for their frivolous expenditures on clothing and jewelry, and excoriated for their dangerous meddling in politics. Their increasing visibility in the political realm by the eighteenth century led many to blame Louis XV’s mistresses—along with Queen Marie-Antoinette, who exercised a similar influence over her husband, Louis XVI—for the degradation and eventual fall of the monarchy. This article reexamines the historiography of the royal mistress.
Postmodernism and Myths about Great Artists
This article analyses how a late twentieth-century/early twenty-first-century development in bandes dessinées, which combines historical novels with biographies, expresses paradoxical attitudes towards mythologies surrounding Paul Gauguin and Vincent Van Gogh. Firstly, I demonstrate that the paradox stems from a simultaneous desire for and suspicion of master narratives, identified as intrinsic to postmodernism by Linda Hutcheon. Then I establish how eight graphic novels perpetuate pre-existing mythological master narratives about Gauguin and Van Gogh. Nevertheless, those mythologies simultaneously arouse scepticism: myths do not express exemplary universal truths; myths are artificial and fictionalised constructs whose status in reality is dubious. The albums convey tension between desire and suspicion regarding myths by a variety of devices. These include sequenced panels, circular plots, unreliable witnesses, fictional insertions, parodies and mock realism.
The Imprisonment of Women in Eighteenth-Century Siberia
The article focuses on the imprisonment of elite women from the Russian metropole and women of mixed ethnic backgrounds on the Siberian frontier in the mid-eighteenth-century. Female prisoners and their monastic jailors responded to ascribed identities, positions, and circumstances dictated by imperial policies within the walls of the Dalmatov Vvedenskii Convent, which complicates our understanding of imperial interaction, gender, and empire in Siberia.
Photographers of Siberia in Late Imperial Russia
This article is focused on several themes connected with the history of photography, political exile in Imperial Russia, exploration and representations of Siberia in the late 19th–early 20th centuries. Photography became an essential tool in numerous geographic, topographic and ethnographic expeditions to Siberia in the late 19th century; well-known scientists started to master photography or were accompanied by professional photographers in their expeditions, including ones organized by the Russian Imperial Geographic Society, which resulted in the photographic records, reports, publications and exhibitions. Photography was rapidly spreading across Asian Russia and by the end of the 19th century there was a photo studio (or several ones) in almost every Siberian town. Political exiles were often among Siberian photographers, making photography their new profession, business, a way of getting a social status in the local society, and a means of surviving financially as well as intellectually and emotionally. They contributed significantly to the museum’s collections by photographing indigenous people in Siberia and even traveling to Mongolia and China, displaying “types” as a part of anthropological research in Asia and presenting “views” of the Russian empire’s borderlands. The visual representation of Siberia corresponded with general perceptions of an exotic East, populated by “primitive” peoples devoid of civilization, a trope reinforced by numerous photographs and depictions of Siberia as an untamed natural world, later transformed and modernized by the railroads construction.
A Christian Perspective
The following is a reflection on the way in which we can comprehend the divine in the secular world. The article attempts to show that the concept of God does not necessarily conflict in any way with secularism as such. Rather, the article suggests that the obscuring of God’s voice can be attributed much more to the duelling modernist tendencies of Manichaeism on the one side, and value-nihilism on the other.
A Muslim Perspective
This article addresses the problem of defining the terms ‘secularism’ and ‘religion’ and the difficulty of accepting the strict separation of religion from politics that some say is needed for a truly secular society. It offers a ‘relationship model’ for religion that sees it as the practice of balancing the responsibilities arising from the relationships between oneself, God, fellow human and living beings and the environment. Examining the attitudes of the Founding Fathers of European secularism, it argues that secular society can only exist if we face the shadows of our colonial past and the literalist theological narrative which is quickly being digested within some Muslim communities. This narrative and how it is affecting Muslim communities in Europe, as well as the shadows of the colonial past, pose a danger to secular society and affects all communities across Europe and these are conversations that need to be held.
Constructing proximity and distance through a Kenyan gated high-rise
The global proliferation of elite high-rise apartments is often read as evidence of social failure, of increasing socioeconomic disparity and fragmentation. The Jaffery Complex, a vertiginous gated high-rise being constructed in the Kenyan port of Mombasa, seems to embody Corbusian ideologies of social transformation based on an explicit distancing from the streets below, insulating its incoming residents from the frequently fused threats of terror, poverty, and crime. However, ethnographic attention to the multistory mosque located within the complex challenges readings of elite stacked housing solutions as “vertical cocoons,” and reveals the tension between proximity and distance that this urban redevelopment strives to construct.