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Alienation, Ambivalence and Identity

Jhumpa Lahiri’s In Other Words

Mohammad Shafiqul Islam

natural. Written almost as a diary, as the author herself mentions, the book centres around Lahiri’s love affair with Italian, the language that she is desperate to learn and write in. Through the book, ‘Lahiri appears to forge a new sense of belonging’. 4

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Felipe Fernández-Armesto

Charles S. Maier, Once Within Borders: Territories of Power, Wealth, and Belonging since 1500 (Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2016), xiii + 387 pp. Illustrations, maps, notes, bibliography, and index. ISBN: $29.95.

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Majed Aladylah

It is important to stress that Arab women writers have produced a new kaleidoscope of narrative fiction in English. They focus on a variety of representations with respect to identity, dislocation, cultural hybridity and belonging. Moreover they have tried to construct a stable subjectivity and a space of belonging. These narratives are now dispersed and relocated by Arab women diasporic novelists such as Hala Alyan. This article will examine Hala Alyan’s 2017 novel, Salt Houses. This debut novel has amalgamated different narrative experimentations and techniques, and how polyphonic spaces have dislocated the conventional act of narration and relocated it in tandem with the non-homogeneity of the Arab world itself.

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The Lady and Gentleman of Shalott

The Early Poems of Elizabeth Bishop

Anne Stevenson

Wallace Stevens, in The Necessary Angel, gave it as his opinion that the purpose of poetry is to help people live their lives. Those of us who have made a study of Elizabeth Bishop’s poems would agree, I think, that they have helped a great many people live their lives. Yet, as David Kalstone remarked, Elizabeth Bishop has always been difficult to ‘place’. She found self-placement, both geographical and psychological, so difficult herself that we find two questions buried in most of her work: ‘Who I am?’ and ‘Where do I belong?’. I would like to suggest in this essay that Bishop did finally decide who she was and where she belonged. Like her own Prodigal, she made up her mind reluctantly, both before and after she went to live in Brazil, to go home to Nova Scotia. She could not live there, of course, since Nova Scotia was the landscape of the childhood that nourished her imagination; nor was that childhood an easy one to return to. But she knew she belonged in Great Village once she began to help herself to live her life by writing about it.

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Going Rogue

Bianca at Large

Elizabeth Mazzola

This article explores how Shakespeare transforms his early picture of female virtue embodied by Bianca Minola – safely stowed in her chambers in The Taming of the Shrew – into the freedom we find in Othello's Bianca, who is an emblem of the larger world; her movements aligned with integrity, the ability to reason, and mastery of her body. I investigate how Bianca's 'nomadic' status guarantees her safety and speech, and also locate her agency and mobility alongside the movements of female characters like Moll Cutpurse, Isabella Whitney's dejected maidservant, and Spenser's Britomart – all guardians of a world to which they only peripherally belong.

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Rowan Williams

In August 1581, Alexander Hoghton, of Lea and Hoghton Tower in Lancashire, died, after making a will in which he left bequests to a number of members of his household – a large one, as befitted one of the wealthiest men in the region, occupying an ample and spectacularly situated mansion not far from Preston. Among the beneficiaries are Fulk Gillom (who can be traced with some likelihood as belonging to a Chester family connected with the productions of the guild plays in the city) and William Shakeshafte. In addition to receiving legacies, these two are also recommended to a neighbour, Sir Thomas Hesketh, for patronage and/or employment; the context clearly suggests that they are involved with providing entertainments for the household.

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Canadian Citizens as Postcolonial Subjects?

Reading Robert Kroetsch's The Lovely Treachery of Words

Bronagh Clarke

Many of the critical essays of the Canadian novelist, poet and theorist Robert Kroetsch, as collected in his 1989 anthology The Lovely Treachery of Words, explore the issue of how Canadian writers attempt to establish a cultural nationalism in the face of the decline of the British Empire. They are an initial expression of ideas about place and language, the problematic discourse of the 'New World', and the reinscription of First Nations peoples into the literature and culture of the Canadian nation. These are concerns which later came to be regarded as 'postcolonial' with the burgeoning of the term in the late 1980s through to the present day. However, his essays are due for reassessment in the light of recent responses to postcolonial subjectivity which critique the 'colonizer-colonized' binary as used in settler-invader contexts. This 'colonizer-colonized' binary has a troubling tendency to efface indigenous peoples. It conceals the imperialistic, land-grabbing aspects of settler-invader history by positing the settler as the true postcolonial subject, searching for a stable national identity – an authentic Canadian sense of citizenship and belonging – in the face of a cultural heritage largely defined by European imperialism.

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Barbara Hodgdon

For some time now, attempts to reconstruct and re-mark the history of how interiority and the subjectivity to which that belongs emerged in Western culture have been making critical headlines. According to the proponents of this explicitly anti-humanist and anti-essentialist master narrative, that moment can be precisely located at the time of Shakespeare. Using Hamlet as his example, Francis Barker argues that bourgeois subjectivity comes into being only in the late seventeenth century; challenging idealist conceptions of literary culture and history, Jonathan Dollimore promises to deliver Shakespeare and his contemporaries from the misrepresentations of essentialist humanism. Similarly, Catherine Belsey claims that to search for characters’ ‘imaginary interiority’ is to map modernist notions of a unified, coherent humanist subject onto early modern texts. According to Margareta de Grazia, those texts do represent motives for interiority, or, as Raymond Williams has it, conditions of possibility for occupying such a personal space; but, as Peter Stallybrass maintains, the early modern subject encountered in Shakespeare’s texts is not an ‘individual’.ho Although that subject may indeed possess a ‘self’ (in the sense of being distinct from others), he does not have an ‘identity’ – a term that is also absent from Shakespeare’s texts and that does not appear, in the sense of denoting individuality, until 1638. In short, we have met the early modern subject, and he is not us.

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'Picturesque Emotion' or 'Great Asian Mystery'?

Disraeli's Tancred as an Ironic Bildungsroman

Nils Clausson

How we interpret a novel is inseparable from what kind of novel we take it to be, from what genre we assume it belongs to. As Peter Rabinowitz remarks in Before Reading: Narrative Conventions and the Politics of Interpretation, ‘[…] what we attend to in a text is […] influenced by the other works in our minds against which we read it. Particular details stand out as surprising, significant, climactic, or strange in part because they are seen in the context of a particular intertextual grid – a particular set of other works of art.’ The truth of this axiom is strikingly illustrated by the critical history of what is possibly the most persistently misinterpreted novel in English literature, Benjamin Disraeli’s Tancred, or the New Crusade (1847). It has been read almost exclusively against an ‘intertextual grid’ consisting of both Disraeli’s earlier novels, especially Coningsby (1844) and Sybil (1845), and what the contemporary reviewer of the novel in The Times called ‘fiction “with a purpose”’. What the reviewer particularly had in mind was a specific type of novel which Disraeli himself had a hand in creating and which later came to be known, variously, as the condition-of-England novel (a phrase borrowed from Carlyle), the social-problem novel, the industrial novel, or simply as a political novel or a roman à thèse.

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A.D. Harvey

of functionality that are intrinsic to both architecture and clothing they belong more on the art side of the art-design divide. It is no coincidence that two of the most influential architects of the Renaissance, Raphael and Michelangelo, are even