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Gregory Vargo

4 St John’s Eve (1848)­– ­Ernest Jones Editor’s introduction In certain respects, Ernest Jones’s gothic melodrama St John’s Eve is atypical of Chartist drama. It is not explicitly political and neither concerns a historical event nor depicts a popular uprising. Furthermore, its use of stage technology and special effects evidence Jones’s intention of having the play performed at commercial venues rather than by amateurs (in the event, however, it was never staged). At the same time, the play, published in 1848 in the 6d. Chartist journal the Labourer, speaks to

in Chartist drama
Josette Wolthuis

‘She doesn't have a signature, but she certainly has style.’ This is how Eve Polastri (Sandra Oh) describes the female assassin operating internationally, whom she has been investigating on her own time before joining MI6 in their mission to expose the organisation for which the assassin, Villanelle (Jodie Comer), works. Alongside its cultural diversity and suspenseful storytelling around the romantic relationship developing between Eve and Villanelle, a cat-and-mouse game in which the roles are often reversed, BBC's Killing Eve (2018

in Complexity / simplicity
Atheism and polygenesis
Nathan G. Alexander

Race in a Godless World 1 Were Adam and Eve our first parents? Atheism and polygenesis For much of the history of Christianity, it was taken as a fact that all humans descended from Adam and Eve about 6,000 years ago. This idea first came under threat upon the European discovery of the Americas and the previously unknown people who lived there. Since the Bible was silent about these mysterious people, various authors – the most important being Isaac La Peyrère (1596–1676) – rejected the orthodox view and instead speculated that there must have been men who

in Race in a Godless World
C. R. Cheney
Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
Open Access (free)
James Baldwin and the "Closeted-ness" of American Power
David Jones

This article reads the work of James Baldwin in dialogue with that of Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick. Taking its cue from Baldwin’s claim that Americans “live […] with something in [their] closet” that they “pretend […] is not there,” it explores his depiction of a United States characterized by the “closeted-ness” of its racial discourse. In doing so, the article draws on Sedgwick’s work concerning how the containment of discourses pertaining to sexuality hinges on the closeting of non-heteronormative sexual practices. Reconceptualizing Sedgwick’s ideas in the context of a black, queer writer like Baldwin, however, problematizes her own insistence on the “historical gay specificity” of the epistemology she traces. To this end, this article does not simply posit a racial counterpart to the homosexual closet. Rather, reflecting Baldwin’s insistence that “the sexual question and the racial question have always been entwined,” I highlight here the interpretive possibilities opened up by intersectional analyses that view race, sexuality, and national identity as coextensive, reciprocal epistemologies.  

James Baldwin Review
Open Access (free)
Intimacy, Shame, and the Closet in James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room
Monica B. Pearl

This essay’s close interrogation of James Baldwin’s 1956 novel Giovanni’s Room allows us to see one aspect of how sexual shame functions: it shows how shame exposes anxiety not only about the feminizing force of homosexuality, but about how being the object of the gaze is feminizing—and therefore shameful. It also shows that the paradigm of the closet is not the metaphor of privacy and enclosure on one hand and openness and liberation on the other that it is commonly thought to be, but instead is a site of illusory control over whether one is available to be seen and therefore humiliated by being feminized. Further, the essay reveals the paradox of denial, where one must first know the thing that is at the same time being disavowed or denied. The narrative requirements of fictions such as Giovanni’s Room demonstrate this, as it requires that the narrator both know, in order to narrate, and not know something at the same time.

James Baldwin Review
Making Sense of Hogg‘s Body of Evidence
Joel Faflak

This paper explores the occult relationship between modern psychoanalysis and the pre-Freudian psychoanalysis of James Hogg‘s 1824 Gothic novel, The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner. Haunted by the ghosts of Mesmerism and of Calvinisms rabidly contagious religious fervour, Hogg‘s novel explodes post-Lockean paradigms of the subject for a post-Romantic British culture on the eve of the Empire. Turning back to Scotland‘s turbulent political and religious history, the novel looks forward to the problems of Empire by turning Locke‘s sense-making and sensible subject into the subject of an unconscious ripe for ideological exploitation, a subject mesmerized by the process of making sense of himself.

Gothic Studies
Blake and the Science-Fiction Counterculture
Jason Whittaker

This article explores the more detached and ironic view of Blake that emerged in the 1970s compared to appropriations of him in the 1960s, as evident in three science-fiction novels: Ray Nelson’s Blake’s Progress (1977), Angela Carter’s The Passion of New Eve (1977), and J. G. Ballard’s The Unlimited Dream Company (1979). In adopting a more antagonistic posture towards Blake, all three of these books reflect increasingly ambivalent attitudes towards the countercultures of the 1960s, and can be read as critical of some of those very energies that the Romantic movement was seen to embody. Thus Nelson rewrites the relationship of William and Catherine, in which the engraver comes under the influence of a diabolic Urizen, while Carter recasts the Prophet Los as a Charles Manson-esque figure. Even Ballard, the most benign of the three, views Blakean energy as a release of potentially dangerous psychopathologies. In all the novels, we see a contrarian use of misprision, rewriting Blake as Blake had rewritten Milton.

Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
A Focus on Community Engagement
Frédéric Le Marcis, Luisa Enria, Sharon Abramowitz, Almudena-Mari Saez, and Sylvain Landry B. Faye

perceived chiefs and customary law as closer to communities than central government, but they called for reform ( Fanthorpe, 2006 ). On the eve of the Ebola outbreak, therefore, chiefs maintained their power but it was not unchallenged. Historical divisions between Americo- and African-Liberians have marked the fight for power and socio-political identities in Liberia ( Ellis, 1999 ). During the political instability of the 1980s and the fourteen years of civil war (1989–2003), these

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs