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Neil Cornwell

2 Antecedents to the absurd only the finite being cannot think the thought of annihilation (The Night Watches of Bonaventura, 1804) Long before his existentialist followers, the man from the underground proclaimed the majesty of the absurd. (George Steiner, Tolstoy or Dostoevsky, 1959) From the ancients . . . It has become a commonplace to trace the antecedents of the absurd back to the older stages of Greek theatre (the so-called Old Comedy), or indeed beyond that. Roberto Calasso, in his Literature and the Gods, would trace the roots of ‘absolute literature

in The absurd in literature
Derek Paget

5 Histories: antecedents and first phase Documentary film and its ‘judicious fictions’ Docudrama has its roots in a documentary film tradition that was always prepared to use fictional means to tell a factual story. The implication is there in Grierson’s defining phrase ‘the creative treatment of actuality’. The phrase has often been misquoted, with US Judge Pollack’s ruling in the case of the film Missing (mentioned in Chapter 2) just one example. More than once ‘creative’ has become ‘imaginative’; ‘treatment’ has turned into ‘interpretation’ or ‘use’; and

in No other way to tell it
Bulletin of the John Rylands Library
An Interview with James Baldwin (1969)
Rich Blint and Nazar Büyüm

This is the first English language publication of an interview with James Baldwin (1924–87) conducted by Nazar Büyüm in 1969, Istanbul, Turkey. Deemed too long for conventional publication at the time, the interview re-emerged last year and reveals Baldwin’s attitudes about his literary antecedents and influences such as Richard Wright, Langston Hughes, and Countee Cullen; his views concerning the “roles” and “duties” of a writer; his assessment of his critics; his analysis of the power and message of the Nation of Islam; his lament about the corpses that are much of the history and fact of American life; an honest examination of the relationship of poor whites to American blacks; an interrogation of the “sickness” that characterizes Americans’ commitment to the fiction and mythology of “race,” as well as the perils and seductive nature of American power.

James Baldwin Review
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Editor: David Herd

As a poet, critic, theorist and teacher, Charles Olson extended the possibilities of modern writing. Conceived as both a re-assessment of Olson's place in recent poetic history, and also as a way into his work for those not already familiar with his writing, this book invited three kinds of contribution. First, there are contextualising chapters, discussions that situate Olson's thought and work. Second, there are chapters that have as their focus individual Olson poems, whether from Maximus or shorter lyrics. Third, there are chapters by writers for whom Olson has proved a crucial interlocutor. The different kinds of engagement with Olson are grouped according to key themes and preoccupations within his work. The chapters of the first section probe Olson's relation to knowledge, dwelling in particular on the way he looked to make poetry answerable to other ways of knowing. They underscore the degree to which Olson's work was founded in dialogue: with myth, with science, with poetic antecedents. The second section, on Poetics, brings the matter of dialogue to the fore. It provides a reading of the poets' often fraught relationship that shows clearly how questions of poetics crossed lines of affiliation. If the feminine emerges in Olson as a discernible absence, his concern with History is plain. Like Pound, he took the epic to be a poem containing history, a position he modified by the exploration of historical agency he characterized as istorin. The book concludes by considering the matter of relations within and across space.

Reclaiming social enterprise from its neoliberal turn

Social enterprise and third sector activity have mushroomed into a prolific area of academic research and discourse over the past 20 years, with many claiming their origins rooted in Blair, New Labour and Giddens’ ‘Third Way’. But many academic contributions lack experience of policy implementation and do not access the wealth of grey, legacy and public policy literature from earlier periods which supports different interpretations. Since most make few references to developments during the 1970s and 1980s, their narrow focus on New Labour from 1997 onwards not only neglects real antecedents, but miscasts the role of social enterprise.

Adopting a Critical Realist approach, the author had access to previously unused hardcopy documents from archives and collections and interviewed key players and key actors between 1998 and 2002, when major social enterprise and third sector policy changes occurred.

During a key political period from 1998 to 2002, Blair’s New Labour governments forced through a major conceptual shift for social enterprise, co-operative and third sector activity. Many structures, formed as community responses to massive deindustrialisation in the 1970s and 1980s, were repositioned to bid against the private sector to obtain contracts for delivery of low-cost public services.

Other UK academic contributions draw parallels with North American individual social entrepreneurs or rely excessively on interpretations from L’Emergence de l’Entreprise Sociale en Europe (EMES) Research Network, which prioritises a marketised version of “work integration social enterprises” (WISEs).

So the restoration of political and economic democracy has been denied to many local communities.

Author: Neil Cornwell

This book offers a comprehensive account of the absurd in prose fiction. As well as providing a basis for courses on absurdist literature (whether in fiction or in drama), it offers a broadly based philosophical background. Sections covering theoretical approaches and an overview of the historical literary antecedents to the ‘modern’ absurd introduce the largely twentieth-century core chapters. In addition to discussing a variety of literary movements (from Surrealism to the Russian OBERIU), the book offers detailed case studies of four prominent exponents of the absurd: Franz Kafka, Samuel Beckett, Daniil Kharms and Flann O'Brien. There is also wide discussion of other English-language and European contributors to the phenomenon of the absurd.

Leslie Huckfield

. Because of their completely different context, the author seeks to show below why North American antecedents for nonprofits and social entrepreneurs are hardly reliable for the UK. Many of these were influenced by the marketisation of North American nonprofits under Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush “thousand points of light” polices which coincided with Thatcher and Major Conservative governments

in How Blair killed the co-ops
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The Book of Margery Kempe and its antecedents
Diane Watt

acknowledged influence of Continental mystical treatises in particular on Kempe's self-fashioning as an English visionary, The Book of Margery Kempe is sometimes read as a text without a pre -text. Yet even though considerable evidence survives of English women's engagement in a vibrant literary culture in Latin and subsequently French from the early Middle Ages onwards, the relationships between The Book of Margery Kempe and its literary antecedents are still relatively unknown or unexplored. This chapter asks what happens if we encounter The Book of Margery Kempe

in Encountering The Book of Margery Kempe
Docudrama on film and television
Author: Derek Paget

Docudrama has become centrally important not only in television production but also in film. They require pre-production research and this is a key marker of difference between docudrama and other kinds of drama. In its emphasis on personality, modern docudrama adheres to a US 'made-for-TV movie' mode that Todd Gitlin has described as ' little personal stories that executives think a mass audience will take as revelations of the contemporary'. This book outlines the main legal and regulatory issues that concern docudrama. The sheer proliferation of words and phases coined to categorise forms that mix drama and documentary is in itself remarkable. Phrases, compound nouns and noun coinages have been drawn mainly from four root words: documentary, drama, fact, and fiction. The book discusses the form's principal codes and conventions to which people in a media-literate environment respond, and that they recognise prior to categorising what they watch. Cultures are living things, condensing around 'key words'. Such words mark out points of interest, contestation and anxiety. Griersonian documentary actively embraced an artfulness always likely to be at odds with the recording of 'actuality'. The history of factual drama replays in microcosm the essential differences in emphases between the British and American television systems. Societies under threat from shadowy 'terrorist' organisations offered new templates for the docudramas that eventually fuelled 1990s 'co-pros' of interest to audiences on both sides of the Atlantic. The current spectrum of 'intergeneric hybridisation' in film and television can be represented graphically.