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Authority and vision

John McGahern is one of those writers whose work continues to be appreciated across a range of readerships. As a writer who eschewed the notion of himself as 'artist' he addressed his task through a commitment to style, what he called the 'revelation of the personality through language'. McGahern's work began to receive critical attention only from when Denis Sampson's seminal study, Outstaring Nature's Eye: The Fiction of John McGahern was published in 1993. This book focuses on the physical landscape to show how the inadequacy of the State that emerged after 1922 is reflected in the characters' shifting relationship with the landscape, the connection has been made vulnerable through trauma and painful memory. It explores this sense of resentment and disillusionment in McGahern's novels, drawing parallels between the revolutionary memories and McGahern's own family experience. McGahern's All Over Ireland offers a number of fine stories, mostly set in Ireland, and dealing with distinctly Irish themes. He wrote a novel that is an example of openness, compassion and understanding for any form of strangeness. The vision of education and of the shaping of identity found in his writing is not an idiosyncratic one - it is consistent with much of the best thought within the tradition of liberal education. The book provides an intriguing comparison between McGahern and Flannery O'Connor, illustrating how diverse stories share an underlying current of brutality, demonstrating their respective authors' preoccupation with a human propensity towards evil.

Michael Newman

One key aspect of characterization is the construction of character psychology, the attribution to fictional representations of beliefs and desires, personality traits, and moods and emotions. Characters are products of social cognition, the human propensity for making sense of others. However, they are also products of artists who fashion them to appeal to our nature as social beings. Through an analysis of Todd Solondz‘s Welcome to the Dollhouse (1995), this paper describes three processes of social cognition which are crucial for audiovisual characterization: folk psychology, causal attribution, and emotion expressions.

Film Studies
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Željka Doljanin and Máire Doyle

: authority and vision the deep American South, known for her economical, dead-pan, reportorial style. Yet McGuinness ably reveals the striking similarities to be found when the stories are read in the context of Catholic origins. The essay illustrates how two stories so diverse in style, but sharing an underlying current of brutality, demonstrate their respective authors’ preoccupation with a human propensity towards evil. Through a close reading of ‘Oldfashioned’, a story that explores displacement and cultural shifts, David Clare (Chapter 7) considers McGahern

in John McGahern
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Ex machina
Katia Pizzi

. This book also addresses the artificiality, otherness and alienation encoded in the binary machine–human, a ‘techno-dualistic account of ourselves, as software running on the hardware of our bodies’ stemming from ‘an immemorial human propensity to identify ourselves with, explain ourselves through, our most advanced machines’.4 Frequently articulated in the language of theatre and performance, this discourse is underpinned by the all too modern dychotomies artificial versus natural, machine versus human, inorganic versus organic. The futuristi were eager to explore

in Italian futurism and the machine
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Pathologising security through Lacanian desire
Charlotte Heath-Kelly

philosophy to argue that death anxiety drives the creation of social structures, which then imagine stability, permanency and meaning (and, in so doing, sublimate death anxiety). Borrowing from Heidegger and Agamben, the human propensity for language was connected to the uniquely human cognisance of death – and the argument was made that language functions to perform and assert the permanence of meaning and

in Death and security
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Cora Fox, Bradley J. Irish, and Cassie M. Miura

’ in the sciences and humanities, in which scholars from diverse disciplines have fixed their attention on matters of emotion, affect, and feeling. The volume also participates in a nascent movement to recalibrate historical studies of emotions, which have suffered from what Darrin McMahon has called a ‘negative bias’. 5 McMahon suggests a number of broad contributing causes for this bias, including what psychologists have argued is the human propensity to be more affected by and remember negative stimuli, but most of

in Positive emotions in early modern literature and culture
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Death and security – the only two certainties
Charlotte Heath-Kelly

to behave meaningfully or to find meaning. Their solution was act in ‘good faith’, always in cognisance of absurdity rather than taking part in the charade that it can be effaced. Heidegger approached mortality through language, and language through mortality. He argued that the unique human awareness of mortality is intimately linked to the unique human propensity for

in Death and security
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Kate McLuskie and Kate Rumbold

rhetorical splitting that surround the idea of value take place exclusively in the realm of abstraction, where the human propensity for making value judgements can have free rein. As soon as the discussion moves to the conditions in which transcendent values might be actualised in effective social practice, the contingencies of particular social and historical conditions mitigate the claims to universality or

in Cultural value in twenty-first-century England
Classical Hindu law and the ethics of conservatism
Donald R. Davis

organs of sense as the tools of one’s passions occurs ubiquitously in Hindu literature, common to both rule-centred traditions such as Dharmaśāstra and ascetic traditions that seek a salvific freedom above all category and distinction. We find an example of the human propensity to seek self-serving ways around the established rules in Medhātithi’s discussion of social class and hierarchy, that is, caste. The determination of class pedigree and birth status was of central importance to a tradition in which the main pillar

in Rules and ethics
Composition and repetition in John Schlesinger’s Billy Liar
B. F. Taylor

now needs to move this situation forward towards some kind of resolution. But there is more to say here. The public nature of this spectacle adds an element of cruelty to what we see. It was only a matter of time before Billy’s lies would be revealed for what they were but the way in which he is now exposed is painful to watch. This final image returns us to the poignant image of Billy standing by the milk machine and the repetition tells us something about the human propensity for sadness, loneliness, and quiet desperation. Billy and Liz leave the dance hall and go

in The British New Wave