Publications

Performing Identities: Celebrating Indigeneity in the Arts

Edited by G. N. Devy, Geoffrey V. Davis and K. K. Chakravarty

Routledge, 2015

Performing Identities is a pioneering account of the performance practices among indigenous communities from across the world. It highlights how the world views nurtured and sustained by indigenous people are represented through their distinctive approaches and styles of ‘doing arts’; and how a divergent understanding of concepts such as space, time, joy, pain, life, and death calls for a different aesthetic response in perceiving creative expression. The volume demonstrates how these diverse modes of ‘creativity’ have brought the indigenous into a cultural conflict with communities that claim to be modern. Placing the ‘view from below’ at the centre of literary interpretation, it brings unexplored narratives to the fore by looking at oral traditions, visual histories, and performance practices of indigenous communities in several continents. Bringing together scholars, artists and activists, this book will prove indispensable to scholars and students of cultural anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, linguistics, literature, and tribal and indigenous studies.

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New Territories: Theatre, Drama, and Performance in Post-apartheid South Africa

Edited by Greg Homann and Marc Maufort

Peter Lang, 2015

In this critical anthology of essays and interviews, some of the world’s most respected scholars and practitioners writing and working in the area of South African theatre today share their detailed examinations and insights on the complex and contradictory context of Post-Apartheid society. Loosely grouped into the categories of Theatre, Drama, and Performance, the essays collected here offer a sampling of work being staged, produced, and written in the country today. The contributors document, contrast, and analyse significant case studies, representing examples from site-specific performance to new South African plays, from traditional indigenous performance practice to the reimagining of Western classics. The anthology takes the year of South Africa’s first democratic election, 1994, as its departure point and includes a broad range of topics that capture the current paradigm.

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Imagining Bombay, London, New York and Beyond: South Asian Diasporic Writing from 1990 to the Present

Maria Ridda

Peter Lang, 2015

This book examines new literary imaginings of the interconnected city spaces of Bombay, London and New York in South Asian diasporic texts from the 1990s to the present. It charts the transition from London-centric studies on postcolonial city spaces to the new axis of Bombay, London and New York.
The book argues that two key dynamics have developed from this shift: on the one hand, London, once the destination of choice for migrants, becomes a «transit zone» for onward movement to New York; on the other, different cities are perceived to coexist and come together in one single location. To investigate these new webs of interactions and power relations, this monograph employs Bakhtin’s model of the chronotope. Serving as a magnifying lens, the chronotope inserts different spatial and temporal segments within wider narratives of urban space. This book promotes a new understanding of the cities of the South Asian diaspora as subversive sites for defining processes of cultural signification.

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Performing Noncitizenship: Asylum Seekers in Australian Theatre, Film and Activism

Emma Cox

Anthem Press, 2015

The first book-length study of its kind to examine Australia’s fraught asylum politics through the lens of artistic performance. This book will be of interest to scholars, students and practitioners in various strands of performing arts, cultural criticism and the convergence of art and politics

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The Shouting in the Dark

Elleke Boehmer

Sandstone Press, 2015

Late at night Ella watches her elderly father on the verandah, raging at the African sky. Caught between her mother’s mysterious grief and her father’s shattering wartime experiences, between the Holland of their past and apartheid South Africa, Ella fights hard to make it through her childhood in one piece. Her one enchantment is her forbidden love for the teenage gardener, Phineas. Years later, as an activist seeking political refuge in the Netherlands, Ella discovers her father never registered her birth. Now she must confront her father’s ghosts, and create a new future for herself.

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Habari ya English? What about Kiswahili? East Africa as a Literary and Linguistic Contact Zone

Edited by Lutz Diegner and Frank Schulze-Engler

Brill | Rodopi, 2015

This wide-ranging collection deals with the dynamics of current developments in literature, language, and culture in Kenya and Tanzania. It testifies to a spirited exchange of ideas between writers and academics and promotes transdisciplinary dialogue among several academic fields – anglophone and Swahili studies, literary studies and linguistics, East African and German academic discourse, Kenyan and Tanzanian perspectives. The contributions create a ‘contact zone’ of their own that will
generate productive impulses for transdisciplinary research and allow readers to gain new insights into trajectories of Swahili and anglophone writing in East Africa. Topics covered include literary language choice and translation, popular fiction and codeswitching, Swahili hip-hop texts, HIV/AIDS discourse, the advance of ‘Sheng’ and ‘Engsh’ in literary-linguistic space, contemporary women’s literature in Kenya, and special studies of Abdulrazak Gurnah and David G. Maillu.

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Global Ecologies and the Environmental Humanities: Postcolonial Approaches

Edited by Elizabeth DeLoughrey, Jill Didur, and Anthony Carrigan

Routledge, 2015

This book examines current trends in scholarly thinking about the new field of the Environmental Humanities, focusing in particular on how the history of globalization and imperialism represents a special challenge to the representation of environmental issues. Essays in this path-breaking collection examine the role that narrative, visual, and aesthetic forms can play in drawing attention to and shaping our ideas about long-term and catastrophic environmental challenges such as climate change, militarism, deforestation, the pollution and management of the global commons, petrocapitalism, and the commodification of nature.

The volume presents a postcolonial approach to the environmental humanities, especially in conjunction with current thinking in areas such as political ecology and environmental justice. Spanning regions such as Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, Australasia and the Pacific, as well as North America, the volume includes essays by founding figures in the field as well as new scholars, providing vital new interdisciplinary perspectives on: the politics of the earth; disaster, vulnerability, and resilience; political ecologies and environmental justice; world ecologies; and the Anthropocene. In engaging critical ecologies, the volume poses a postcolonial environmental humanities for the twenty-first century. At the heart of this is a conviction that a thoroughly global, postcolonial, and comparative approach is essential to defining the emergent field of the environmental humanities, and that this field has much to offer in understanding critical issues surrounding the creation of alternative ecological futures.

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Reworking Postcolonialism: Globalization, Labour and Rights

Edited by Pavan Kumar Malreddy, Birte Heidemann, Ole Birk Laursen, Janet Wilson

Palgrave Macmillan, 2015

An interdisciplinary collection of essays, Reworking Postcolonialism explores questions of work, precarity, migration, minority and indigenous rights in relation to contemporary globalization. It focuses on the impact of global market forces on the formation of new subject positions among urban dwellers, exiles, and other disenfranchised communities. Bringing together political, economic and literary approaches to texts and events from across the postcolonial world, the essays collected here investigate the transformative effects of the global dissemination of capital and goods and the movements of people. They call for a revision of existing discourses on rights, entitlements and citizenship.

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Communities in Contemporary Anglophone Caribbean Short Stories

Lucy Evans

Postcolonialism Across the Disciplines, 16, 2014

This book examines the representation of community in contemporary Anglophone Caribbean short stories, focusing on the most recent wave of Caribbean short story writers following the genre’s revival in the mid 1980s. The first extended study of Caribbean short stories, it presents the phenomenon of interconnected stories as a significant feature of late twentieth and early twenty-first century Anglophone Caribbean literary cultures. It contends that the short story collection and cycle, literary forms regarded by genre theorists as necessarily concerned with representations of community, are particularly appropriate and enabling as a vehicle through which to conceptualise Caribbean communities.

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Social Invisibility and Diasporas in Anglophone Literature and Culture: The Fractal Gaze

Françoise Kral

Palgrave Macmillan, 2014

Social Invisibility and Diasporas in Anglophone Literature and Culture theorizes the differential visibility of diasporic communities and the way their in/visibility has evolved at the turn of the 21st century, partly as a consequence of the development of new media. Its transdisciplinary focus combines social sciences and in particular sociology with media studies and examines a large spectrum of issues related to in/visibility through the prism of a corpus of contemporary cultural productions, which include films by major film directors (Mira Nair, Gurinder Chadha), visual artists (Sonia Boyce, Mona Hatoum, Keith Piper) and novelists (Amitav Ghosh, V.S. Naipaul, Caryl Phillips, Salman Rushdie and Sam Selvon) as well as emerging voices (Hari Kunzru, Kiran Desai). The book maps the trajectory of diasporas in and out of social visibility and focuses more specifically on the less visible migrants, whose voices are often unheard or silenced. This paradoxical invisibility in our days of hypervisibility is interpreted by the author as an epiphenomenon of the increasingly differential visibility which is brought about in a world where the media have become ubiquitous and where visibility has become fractal.

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Contemporary Approaches in Literary Trauma Theory

Ed. by Michelle Balaev. Palgrave Macmillan, 2014.

Contemporary Approaches in Literary Trauma Theory showcases some of the leading scholars in literary criticism who take trauma studies in a new direction by broadening the theoretical foundations and future directions of the field through innovative analyses of trauma in literature and culture. Trauma causes a disruption, but the values attached to this experience are influenced by a variety of individual and cultural factors that change over time. Trauma may at times forever silence one, yet trauma can equally at times reorient consciousness in an adaptive fashion that eschews pathology. This collection of essays argues that trauma in literature must be read through a theoretical pluralism that allows for an understanding of trauma’s variable representations that include yet move beyond the concept of trauma as pathological and unspeakable”

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