This essay addresses the socio-cultural potential of phreno-mesmerism in the mid-nineteenth century and how its good intentions were frustrated by its uncanny discourse. Supporters of phreno-mesmerisms social agency dreamed that the physiological make-up of future generations could be determined by engineering sexual partnerships. But the more earnestly the new hybrid science was advanced as a tool of social change, the more the discourse of phreno-magnetism proved unwieldy. In effect, the discourse represents a double-bind, intertwining sex and gender, essentialism and constructionism, science and the occult, materialism and Gothic. The article focuses of Elliotson‘s enthusiasm for uniting phrenology and mesmerism in his notorious Letter On Mesmeric Phrenology and Materialism (1843).
, in relation to Beuys, the curator and critic Robert Storr suggested that viewers might ‘suspect that his myth was pure hokum … and yet … readily succumb to its lyricism’, being moved by the artist's vision for socialchange.
It is in this way that Coates's shamanic performances function. What is central to this argument, however, is that the shaman has provided Coates with an alternative model for conceiving of human relations to non-human animals.
The other shapes of Marcus Coates
litteraturforskning , 104:2 (2017), pp. 115–29. DOI: 10.18261/issn.1500–1989–2017–02–05.
A. Nestingen, Crime and Fantasy in Scandinavia: Fiction, Film and SocialChange (Seattle and London: University of Washington Press, 2008), pp. 159, 167.
Nestingen, Crime and Fantasy in Scandinavia , p. 189
The Open Graves, Open Minds project discussed in this book relates the undead in literature, art and other media to questions concerning gender, technology, consumption and social change. The story of vampires, since their discovery in eighteenth-century Europe, is one of transformations and interbreedings of genre, which mediate shifts in ways of knowing and doubting. It is marked by metamorphoses of the vampire itself, from monstrous to sympathetic, but always fascinatingly Other. Certain tropes, such as optical figures, and particularly that of reflection, recur throughout, calling attention to the preoccupation with epistemology in vampire narratives. The book focuses on various aspects of these themes as the story unfolds to the present day. It shows how the persona of Lord Byron became an effective vehicle for the vampire of fiction as a transformed Gothic mode, and grapples with the figure of the non-reflecting vampire who casts no shadow, moving deftly between Dracula and Wilde's Dorian Gray and the 'vampire painting' and installations of the contemporary artist David Reed. The book gives a luminous account of early vampire cinema as a 'Kingdom of shadows', and explores the undead at the interface, where knowing becomes problematic: 'unsettlement'. The book also unearths the folklore roots of vampire fiction and offers a glimpse of how contemporary writers adapt the perennial figure.
located in domestic, or domesticated, settings, traditional sitcom has often seemed impervious to the socialchanges that affect its audiences (and which are represented elsewhere in the television schedules). The view of Britain seen through the lens of, say, Terry and June (BBC 1979–87) is a curiously outmoded one, in which traditional masculinities and class identities have survived the onslaught of feminism and affluence. British sitcoms have often been compared unfavourably with those from the US, which, as Hallam points out, seem to have recognised the need to
aesthetics of television drama texts to the lived dialectics of sense-making and taste-making.
The analysis of drama programmes has been concerned with identifying the grounds for valuing one programme over another as aesthetically challenging, conducive to socialchange, or the product of authorial creativity. Informed by the interest in supplementing the close study of audio-visual texts with a recognition of television drama as a popular mode that works with and against generic expectations and recognises the pleasures offered to its audiences, work on the question of
socialchange becomes inaugurated (one which
is also articulated through Camp). 18 By making himself a living piece of Art he
became an advert for the transgressive qualities of Art. So, the Art
which was seen as socially suspect was used by Wilde in order to ask
unsettling questions about the possibilities of socialchange.
As noted earlier, Wilde’s theory of artistic
practice was influenced by his
The crisis of masculinity in Ian McEwan’s early fiction
patriarchal order, but also with the taboo of incestuous desire.
The women’s liberation movement, which gained prominence in
Britain throughout the 1970s, directly challenged traditional structures
of patriarchy, including the social organisation of the family unit.
According to Stephen Brooke, ‘the family was the primary site’ of
controversy during this period of socialchange. 8 The women’s
’s intervention, 7 in actual history some of the early established Land Defence Volunteer platoons had a tendency to put themselves above the law. Moreover, the only available training of the actual Home Guard at Osterley Park gravitated towards republicanism, being in fact led by socialists, some veterans of the Spanish Civil War, notably Tom Wintringham, who might have sought socialchange by another route. 8 Thus another treatment of Dad’s Army material based authentically in history might be imagined which would offer a different version of the Home Guard and, depending
’s creature is the most striking of
these: a being of human parts made inhuman, he embodies not only
Romantic systems of aesthetic self-production but the revolutionary
polemics in which monstrosity concerns political and socialchange
(Botting, 1991 :
141–9). Monstrosity is an effect of systems of power, and, at the
same time, an unreal, constructed figure; it manifests movements or