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Publisher: Dr Sushanta Bhattacharyya, Teacher-in-Charge, Sarat Centenary College <sccollegednk.org.in>, Dhaniakhali, Sub-Division: Chinsurah, District: Hooghly, WB, India, PIN: 712302. e-Mail: saratcentenary@gmail.com …

Current Issue (July 2017)

Volume II Number ii

 

Dr Md. Monirul Islam

Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose College, Kolkata

mi.moni23@gmail.com

&

Dr Subhajit Das

Presidency University, Kolkata

subhajit.geog@presiuniv.ac.in

Abstract

The history of English travel narratives reveals that its origin and development is closely linked to the British encounter with the colonial ‘other.’ In the ‘golden age’ of European navigation and discovery travel narratives emerged in England in an effort to familiarise the unknown and the strange.  Once the initial mapping was done by the navigators, travellers, artists and explorers went to the newly discovered territories and narrated the natural as well as the ethnographic conditions they observed there. Such travel narratives undoubtedly had a role in advancing the colonial and the imperial agenda, though simultaneously, they influenced the growth of modern form of tourism during the late eighteenth and the nineteenth century. William Hodges was the first European landscape painter to visit India. During his stay in India (1780-85) he travelled extensively and made several sketches for his paintings, forty eight of which were completed and published between 1785 and 1788 as Select Views of India. A few years later he wrote Travels in India, During the Years 1780, 1781, 1782, & 1783 (1793). The present article aims to explore how Hodges exceeds his artistic self and becomes an apologist for the emerging British Empire in India.

Keywords

Mughals, Empire, travel narrative, ruins

 

 

Dr Harneet Kaur Sandhu

Guru Gobind Singh College for Women, Chandigarh

hksandhu78@gmail.com

Abstract

The present paper intends to study a slave narrative memoir Twelve Years a Slave (1853) by Solomon Northup, a born free African-American man from New York State who is kidnapped and sold into slavery. The book was adapted into 12 Years a Slave (2013), a colossal Hollywood success, instrumental in 2014 being hailed as the year in which Black Cinema has bounced back to tell some complex, honest and unflinching stories about life in America. The protagonist, Northup, had to work in cotton plantations for 12 years in the state of Louisiana before he could be rescued and released. The paper will highlight Solomon Northup’s epic struggle against the violence perpetrated by the malevolent owner of the plantation as Northup strives to hold onto his identity which is being erased in front of his eyes. The paper will analyse how the book grapples with issues of racial identity, exploring a young man’s suffering and frustration for no fault of his.

Keywords

Black memoir, slave narrative, identity, violence, memory

 

 

Soumi Goswami

University of Burdwan

goswami.soumi@gmail.com

Abstract

‘Home’ as a multidimensional concept has been receiving increasing critical attention, especially, in Diaspora Studies. Shaped by a globalizing discourse, the word ‘home’ evokes multiple emotions and sentiments. Its signification not only changes when articulated from different locations but is also shaped by other determinants like ethnicity, class, gender and sexuality. In The Diaspora Writes Home: Subcontinental Narratives, Jasbir Jain argues that when the diaspora decides to ‘write home’, ‘location, space and time’ disintegrates into multifarious discourses. Writing home is not simply a creative expression for them, but also a connectivity ‘as if being called back answering a summon’ (11). Drawing upon Jain’s argument this paper tries to interrogate Shyam Selvadurai’s representation of his home country Sri Lanka in his novels Funny Boy (1994), Cinnamon Gardens (1998), and The Hungry Ghosts (2013). In doing so this paper tries to trace the trajectory of Selvadurai’s shifting relationship with his home country, Sri Lanka and problematizes the use of memory, history, trauma and dislocation in his narratives.

Keywords

home, ethnicity, representation, memory, trauma

 

 

Dr Kwasu David Tembo

University of Edinburgh

tembo.kwasu@gmail.com

Abstract

On the May 19, 2017 episode of Real Time with Bill Maher, Maher’s attacked the exponential rise in the popularity of superhero films and television shows over the past decade, citing ‘superhero culture’ as the cause of America’s current socio-political apathy, disaffection, and complacency. The host’s anti-comics monologue is a recent example of the superhero genre’s protracted history of persecution and criticism that reached its zenith in the McCarthy Era, due in large part to Frederick Wertham and his sensationalist text Seduction of the Innocent (1954). Maher’s sarcastic but ultimately erroneous remonstrations overlooked the genre’s insightful and historically ongoing engagement with the philosophical tension between the onto-existentialism of being human contra Other and power, which comic book superheroes embody. In order to demonstrate this and counter Maher’s reductive reading of the genre, this paper will explore the relationship between comic book superbeings, power, and Otherness to excavate and reassess the multifaceted dynamic between the onto-existentialism of being Other and power, using DC Comics character Superman as a case study. By analysing the character’s diegetic power and Otherness as they are represented in Byran Singer’s Superman Returns (2006) and Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel (2013), this paper will illustrate how Superman, and comic book superbeings more generally, are inherently onto-existentially antithetical to uninvestigated sociopolitical, cultural, and theroetical/philosophical apathy and/or complacency.

Keywords

Superman, power, otherness, ontology, existentialism

 

 

Jenny Platz

University of Rhode Island

jennplatz1955@gmail.com

Abstract

When Googled “My Eating Disorder Story YouTube”, over 4,000,000 million results come up, depicting the growing popularity of the videos. The My Eating Disorder Story genre on YouTube draws attention to the self and the act of confession by making the face the central focus of the screen, and uses scrolling text, photographs, editing, and music to dramatize and create suspense regarding the words of confession. The videos’ creators are engrossed in the essentialist ideology and culture of branding on YouTube. YouTube is a business that profits from the success of YouTube personalities and the more popular a personality the more revenue YouTube will earn from views and advertisements. Because YouTube is about the “You” of the video by showing the “You” through the actual appearance of the YouTuber in the video or the appearance of the YouTuber through the personality of the videos and channel, YouTube is then about creating a specific personality or brand where the self is what is branded and sold to the public. The brands or narratives on eating disorder are presented in identical ways, whether consciously or unconsciously by the YouTubers, which then presents disordered eating in an essentialist way and therefore brand. By presenting the stories in an essentialist way or brand the similar narratives of disordered eating suggest that there is one way to tell the story of one’s eating disorder, imposing a truth in what it means to be anorexic and how one chronicles that experience.

This paper will argue that through the aesthetics and content of the videos the My Eating Disorder Story videos are acts of confession that essentialize and brand disordered eating into a singular experience that then marks the uploader of the video themselves as subjects to disordered eating, branding, and YouTube.

Keywords

YouTube, anorexia, branding, confession, shame

 

 

Ishan Sharma

Panjab University, Chandigarh

ishan1107@yahoo.com

Abstract

The genre of documentary films, though closely related with factuality is often a medium that represents an alternative way to articulate the voices which borders on margins. S. Sukhdev’s Nine months to Freedom: The Story of Bangladesh (1971) and Pramod Pati’s Explorer (1968) belong to a selected category of documentary films which presents a divergence in representing the subject as well as the cinematic technique. This paper focuses on a close analysis of the selected films and attempts to highlight the dissent at multiple levels such as representation of the subject and the use of cinematic technique in the representation of the subject. The films selected for the study belongs to two different genres. Nine Months to Freedom resembles a political documentary; Explorer is an experimental film with plethora of subjects. Through the help of Clifford Geertz’s ‘Thick Description’ the paper attempts to study dissent and dialogue in the film through the help of cinematic apparatus.

Keywords

dissent, montage, thick description

 

 

Lizbette Ocasio-Russe

University of Texas at Dallas

lxo160130@utdallas.edu

Abstract

Pioneer of queer theory Judith Butler believes nothing is natural, not even sexual identity. She looks to uncover the assumptions that “restrict the meaning of gender to received notions of masculinity and femininity” (Cain et al. 2536). What Butler calls “exclusionary gender norms” have constantly worked toward the detriment of both men and women, individuals behaving outside of what majority culture deems appropriate masculine and feminine behavior becoming targets of harassment. Films have been portraying the breaking of gender stereotypes, namely queer behavior, since as early as 1895. Queer, by definition, is anything strange or eccentric, in appearance or character and thus accommodates all, not just those engaging in same-sex practices. The portrayal of the queer in popular film has evolved just as the term itself has evolved to accommodate the diverse individuals of an ever-changing society. Unfortunately, the queer has always encountered resistance from majority culture. However, as a result of this resistance, it has become a growing trend in film to portray not just the queer, but the damaging effects gender binaries promulgated by patriarchal societies have on individuals who contradict them. Queer protagonists that challenge gender stereotypes and are, consequently, victimized include the transgender Brandon from Boys Don’t Cry, the teenagers sent to conversion therapy camp in But I’m a Cheerleader, and the young Billy Elliot struggling to overcome the stereotype of the male ballet dancer. Presenting these kinds of characters is a form of what queer theorist José Esteban Muñoz calls disidentification, a mode of dealing with dominant ideology that works to reform the social norm. Thus, in presenting the psychological abuse queers endure, pop culture films disidentify with gender stereotypes and, consequently, work to transform dominant ideology to accept the individuals it excludes.

Keywords

disidentification, gender stereotypes, queer, film

 

 

Dr Susanta Kumar Bardhan

Suri Vidyasagar College, Birbhum

bardhansk@gmail.com

Abstract

According to the recent study of generative syntax, negation is a functional category in the syntactic structure within the language. NegP as a functional category occurs at different hierarchical positions cross-linguistically the board as matter of fact relating to cross-linguistic variation or parametric variation. Keeping in mind this parametric difference as traced in the above mentioned recent researches in Generative Syntax, an attempt in the present article will be taken to observe the position of negative in two typologically different languages, namely English and Chakma, in following sections. It will deal with the position of negation in English and Chakma and its position in Chakma VP structure.

Keywords

negation, subject, object, specifier, parameter

 

 

Anindya Sen

Bangabasi Morning College, Kolkata

anindya500@rediffmail.com

Abstract

Rabindranath Tagore’s short stories very often deal with the hopes, aspirations, apprehensions, agony and frustration of ordinary people delving closely into the psychological realms of individuals in their circumstances. “Akraatri” (1892) is, in a way, a different kind of story, not because it is in the first person with very scanty space for any other character’s point of view to come to the surface, but for the fact that there is not a single dialogue in the entire story (emphasis mine). To the extent anything is said, it is spoken to oneself and in the climax, it is silence that speaks beyond words and time. It is the challenge of the translator to recapture this prevailing atmosphere of solitude, the exclusive perspective of the first-person narrator, the reality of separation, reflection, regret, lack, failure and not the least, the final taste of infinite joy albeit transitorily. The transference of the culture-specific phenomenon of child marriage in late nineteenth century Bengal and one’s thought-processes associated with it can be equally demanding. Here we compare the efforts of the Englishman, William Radice (1991) and the Bengali, Palash Baran Pal (2000) to demonstrate the range of choices available, their application, deviations and errors, certain principles of decoding which might be the strength of the latter rooted in the culture of the source text and ways of recoding, the potential strength of the former, whose mother tongue happens to be the Target Language. In an age where cultural transactions have become more frequent than ever before, the strengths and limitations of the translators overlap as frequently and do not appear along predictable lines and preconceived notions; hence, there is greater cause to explore the richness and depth of cultural understanding that the two translators come up with.

Keywords

Tagore, short story, translation, culture, comparison

 

 

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