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The Speckled People - a conversation with Hugo Hamilton par Hugo Hamilton, Kouadio N'Duessan, publié le 10/06/2013
Somebody mentioned the word confusion. That is probably the word that describes my childhood most clearly. It was a confusion of languages, confusion between the inside of the house and the outside of the house, confusion between my father’s idealism and my mother’s memories. There’s always been confusion in my life.
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Hugo Hamilton on memory and fiction par Hugo Hamilton, publié le 24/06/2013
It’s a stormy night in Dublin. My father comes into the bedroom to close the window. But the old sash window is rotten. As he tries pull it down, the wooden frame comes apart in his hands like a piece of fruit cake. The glass is smashed. So my father has to find a way to cover over the gaps. He looks around and picks up the nearest thing at hand. In the corner of the room there is a map of the world, a big rolled up school atlas which he’s kept from the time he was a schoolteacher. He rolls it out and nails the atlas up against the window frame. It’s a temporary solution, he says. Go to sleep. So that’s how I fall asleep, with the wind blowing across the world, flapping at the oceans and the continents. The world is there in the morning with the sun coming through.
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"People tried to figure if they were offended and why" : L'intertextualité dans le roman américain contemporain ou la lecture en procès par Françoise Sammarcelli, publié le 09/10/2009
L’objet de ce travail est de problématiser la notion d’intertexte en prenant appui sur le court roman de Louise Welsh : Tamburlaine Must Die. Dans le sillage des études du généticien Louis Hay qui proposait dès 1985 que le texte n’existe pas, l’introduction propose d’argumenter que l’intertexte n’existe pas, il n’existe que des modalités d’intertextualité dont le point commun est le fantasme originaire : l’illusion que l’on pourrait identifier un point d’origine fixe et stable à l’écriture. En lieu et place de l’intertexte est alors postulée l’existence de ce qu’on pourrait appeler la voix textuelle, distincte de la voix auctoriale de l’autorité de l’auteur, qui serait en partie fondée sur la co-présence de multiples modalités d’intertextualité mais qui dépasse largement ce cadre si on la relie à la problématique analytique de l’objet-voix lacanien.
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Anthropology and Philosophy or the Problem of Ontological Symmetry par Tim Ingold, publié le 11/02/2014
"Anthropology, for me, is philosophy with the people in. It is philosophy, because its concern is with the conditions and possibilities of human being and knowing in the one world we all inhabit."
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In Support of Affirmative Action par Randall Kennedy, publié le 06/02/2014
There are several good justifications for racial affirmative action in a society that has long been a pigmentocracy in which white people have been privileged and people of color oppressed. Affirmative action can ameliorate debilitating scars left by past racial mistreatment – scars (such as educational deprivation) that handicap racial minorities as they seek to compete with whites who have been free of racial subordination. Affirmative action can also counter racially prejudiced misconduct. True, an array of laws supposedly protect people in America from racial mistreatment. But these laws are notoriously under-enforced...
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Alex Salmond, concession speech (full transcript) par Alex Salmond, publié le 19/09/2014
Can I say thank-you for that reception but above all thank-you to Scotland for 1.6 million votes for Scottish independence. Our friends in the Highlands of Scotland are still to speak so the final results aren't in, but we know there is going to be a majority for the No campaign. It is important to say that our referendum was an agreed and consented process and Scotland has by a majority decided not, at this stage, to become an independent country. I accept that verdict of the people and I call on all of Scotland to follow suit in accepting the democratic verdict of the people of Scotland.
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Gun violence in Britain par Emilia Wilton-Godberfforde, publié le 05/03/2008
The world is overflowing with guns - as many as one for every ten people. Although in Britain, we are four times more likely to be killed with a knife than a gun, the threat of violence through fire arms has taken central stage in the media.
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Philosophy, Religion and Toleration par Sudipta Kaviraj, publié le 22/01/2015
Religious faith connects strongly held ethical ideals to the belief that these are the commands of God, or a power above human reason. This can make people of hard religious belief to be intensely intolerant. How can we easily accept those who violate or dismiss principles that we consider the foundational to the moral order of the universe? Thus it is quite possible that religious people might be pious inside their own religion, but hateful towards others. Though most religious faiths set down often similar principles of moral conduct, and encourage adherents to live by principles of fellowship, kindness, and love, these injunctions often get circumscribed by the larger idea of their religion being the only ‘true’ religion...
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Identity (Dana Spiotta) par Dana Spiotta, publié le 26/08/2015
I read obituaries. I love to read about people who were notable for one thing—say the woman who appears in a famous photo at Kent State. I am drawn to what people think of as failures: the guy who backed the wrong videotape format or the guy who lost an election after a tweet. I like to read about people whose lives took dramatic turns, like the guy who spent most of his life running an ice cream shop in New Jersey but secretly had a past life as a war criminal. I am fascinated by secret lives or multiplex identities. I imagine the day-to-day ordinary life, what does it feel like over time. I wonder about consequences, guilt, and redemption. I wonder how your past shapes who you are. And I wonder about the life that takes shape around an event. How a fleeting moment can change you, or maybe not. Maybe you are you no matter what.
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Feel the Sound, Thoughts on Music and the Body par Elena Mannes, publié le 19/12/2013
Our relationship with sound is an intimate one – arguably the most intimate with any of our five senses. We live in a visual society. Many people would say that sight is our primary sense. We hear before we see. In the womb, the fetus begins to develop an auditory system between seventeen and nineteen weeks. Already we are in a world of sound, of breath and heartbeat, of rhythm and vibration. Already, we are feeling the sound with our bodies.
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Doug Saunders on migration par Doug Saunders, Clifford Armion, publié le 05/12/2013
Migration almost always follows the same pattern. It doesn’t go from one country to another country. It goes from a cluster of villages or a sub-rural region to specific urban neighbourhoods. Those urban neighbourhoods which are usually low-income, with low housing cost, serve as the bottom rung of the ladder for people arriving in a new country.
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The Words of the Flesh par Wendy Delorme, publié le 11/12/2012
There are people who write from the place that they have been assigned. Some of them with rage so as to get away from it; others, by contrast, who follow the path that has been mapped out for us. There are those who would rather stay on the margin of that space, away from the feminine, off-centered, but are then dragged back to it, kicking and screaming. Their words are women's words, words that are situated. The masculine remains the universal reference. Feminine words stay in the realm of the singular, indexed to the gender of who said them.
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Race Relations and the Presidency of Barack Obama par Randall Kennedy, publié le 05/03/2010
I attended the inauguration of Barack Obama with two million other people who created the largest crowd in the history of Washington, D.C. Although I grew up in the nation's capital, I had never before attended an inauguration. None had previously beckoned. But this time I felt compelled to be present. The sentiments that gripped me were similar to those that animated many who attended the proceedings.
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Manu Joseph: Les familles : liaisons et déliaisons par Manu Joseph, publié le 03/05/2016
Ce texte a été écrit lors des Assises Internationales du Roman 2015, suite à la discussion animée par Raphaëlle Leyris, avec Manu Joseph, Florence Seyvos et Zeruya Shalev. "When I was a child, our home had a sofa that had a big hole in the seat. The sofa was draped in a sheet and only the family knew about the hole. One day, the surly landlord came asking for rent. My mother invited him in on purpose, and made him sit on the sofa. As he sank into the hole, she laughed. My mother did things people did not understand."
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Nikolai Grozni: The Whispers of Music Lost par Nikolai Grozni, publié le 10/09/2014
“Only the words break the silence, all other sounds have ceased,” writes Beckett in his Texts for Nothing. Or does he sing it? If words were the only sounds, then a sentence would be the only melody. We might never understand which came first—the words or the melody. Perhaps the first humans knew how to sing long before they knew how to talk. In this Dionysian vision of antiquity, all mortals were originally musicians. Music was the only thing that mattered. People understood each other by inventing mimetic melodies and singing together in tune. They appeared, loved, suffered, worshipped the gods and died like opera singers on stage.
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Kirsty Gunn: Sound and Writing par Kirsty Gunn, publié le 08/09/2014
That sound you hear, as though coming off the lonely Scottish hills, through the fine Highland air, passing across straths and glens, along rivers and to the sea... Is the sound of the piobaireachd, the classical music of the great Highland bagpipe, a music made for Gatherings, Salutes and Laments, a grand and grave and complicated music - Ceol Mor it is in Gaelic - The Big Music. The Big Music, too, is the title of my latest work of fiction - not a novel, but an elegy, as Virginia Woolf described all her work - a story that sounds as much as it says... An experience of words, of a story of people and a landscape, of a love story played across generations, that nevertheless sounds in the mind...
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What's a hero? par Susan Neiman, publié le 01/04/2014
When talking about heroes I’ve often been asked if I could please drop the problematic term ‘hero’ in favor of the term ‘role model’. I cannot, since the word role model is part of the problem: a sterile term that social scientists invented in 1957, which simply doesn’t work the way the word heroes does: to inspire, to challenge, to light fires for (and under) people of whatever age who need to be reminded that there is more to their lives than they are told to be resigned to. When attempting to use the word hero in a BBC discussion I was attacked by an interlocutor who justified her refusal to use the old-fashioned word ‘hero’ because “Hitler and Stalin were heroes.”
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Minorities and democracy par Siddhartha Deb, publié le 17/01/2014
In 1916, the Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore delivered a series of lectures that would eventually be collected into the book, Nationalism. Tagore was writing in the glow of his own celebrity (he had just won the Nobel Prize for literature) and from within the heart of the crisis engulfing the modern world, two years into the slow, grim war that had converted Europe into a labyrinth of trenches covered over with clouds of poison gas. For Tagore, this was the tragic but inevitable outcome of a social calculus that valued efficiency, profit and, especially, the spirit of us versus them that bonded together the inhabitants of one nation and allowed them to go out, conquer and enslave other people, most of them members of no nation at all.
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Reconfigurations of space in Partition novels par Sandrine Soukaï, publié le 19/09/2019
This article examines two Indian novels Clear Light of Day (1980) by Anita Desai and The Shadow Lines (1988) by Amitav Ghosh along with Burnt Shadows (2009) by Anglo-Pakistani novelist Kamila Shamsie, books written about the Partition of India that accompanied independence in 1947. Partition led to violence on an enormous scale; the exact number of people who were killed has never been ascertained, and estimates vary between one and two million. Partition also caused massive displacements of population, estimated between 12 and 18 million. This paper examines the way in which space – national, familial and communal – was divided and then reshaped by and through Partition. After discussing the fractures, ruptures and uprooting brought about by this trauma, I will consider the way in which diasporic writers devise fictional maps of memory of the past that foster exchanges across geographical borders.
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David Treuer: Forgotten World / Forgotten Words par David Treuer, publié le 18/09/2014
We speak confidently and playfully about the “death of the author” but not one wants to seriously consider the death of literature. But this is precisely what we risk when we treat literature as ethnography, or worse, as the last living remnants of what seem to be vanishing cultures. We don’t read novels, at any rate, to educate ourselves. Or if we do we shouldn’t. And if we do commit this soul error we don’t enjoy novels because of the information they contain. Rather, we enjoy them, we clutch novels to our very souls because they move us, surprise us, transport us, entertain us, shock us, and (ultimately) trick us into caring about people and places that don’t exist and never existed.
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Understanding the social media: an interview with Jeffrey Rosen par Jeffrey Rosen, Clifford Armion, publié le 10/01/2013
Now that we’re living most of our lives online, all of us are vulnerable to the internet. The difficulty with young people is that they may not have experienced the dangers of not being able to escape your past until it’s too late. I like to tell the story of Stacy Sneider, the young 22 year old teacher in training who posted a picture of herself on Myspace wearing a pirate’s hat and drinking from a plastic cup that said drunken pirate. Her supervisor at the school said she was promoting drinking and she was fired. She sued and was unable to get her job back and she had to pick an entirely different career. That’s a very dramatic example on how vulnerable all of us are to being judged out of context by a single image or ill chosen picture and once you do that it may be very hard to escape your past.
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The Drama of (Dis)affinities par François Noudelmann, Avital Ronell, publié le 19/01/2012
Qu'est-ce qui rapproche les individus et les communautés ? Qu'est-ce qui les divise ? Que se passe-t-il lorsque le « courant passe » entre des individus (ou dans certaines situations) et qu'est-ce qui manque quand ce n'est pas le cas ? Comment ce phénomène dépasse-t-il les descriptions traditionnelles des ensembles et des communautés ? What pulls communities and individuals together? What drives them apart? What's going on when people or situations have "chemistry" or click, and what's missing when they don't? How does this bypass more conservative descriptions of ensembles and community?
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Fiche de lecture : The Body, Hanif Kureishi par Laura Menard, publié le 03/05/2008
The narrator of Hanif Kureishi’s novella is a British playwright in his mid-sixties called Adam who experiences the difficulty of living as an aging man. His struggle to maintain his self-esteem and joie de vivre prompts him to give a very cynical account of the old people’s situation in a society ruled by beauty, youth and desire. Adam’s gloomy life takes a favorable turn – or so he thinks … - when he meets Ralph, a handsome and young admirer of his, who secretly informs him he can look just as healthy and fit as he: he may be operated on to have his mind transferred from his old, decaying body to a New Body.
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Going Solo par Eric Klinenberg, publié le 19/02/2013
About five years ago I started working on a book that I planned to call ALONE IN AMERICA. My original idea was to write a book that would sound an alarm about a disturbing trend: the unprecedented rise of living alone. I was motivated by my belief that the rise of living alone is a profound social change – the greatest change of the past 60 years that we have failed to name or identify. Consider that, until the 1950s, not a single human society in the history of our species sustained large numbers of people living alone for long periods of time. Today, however, living alone is ubiquitous in affluent, open societies. In some nations, one-person households are now more common than nuclear families who share the same roof. Consider America. In 1950, only 22 percent of American adults were single, and only 9 percent of all households had just one occupant. Today, 49 percent of American adults are single, and 28 percent of all households have one, solitary resident.
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Disruptive Kinship par Judith Butler, Hélène Cixous, Avital Ronell, publié le 20/01/2012
Que se passe-t-il lorsque les relations et les communautés ne dépendent plus, pour se développer, d'une formation naturelle ou de certains réseaux préexistants, mais créent leurs propres mouvements, souvent difficilement contrôlables ? Les affinités ont peu à voir avec les liens familiaux et les structures codifiées socialement. Elles ne jaillissent pas d'une source commune, ni d'une quelconque communauté. Au contraire, elles conduisent à des assemblages inattendus, à des agrégats de personnes et d'êtres qui défient les arrangements prétendument naturels. What happens when relations and community do not depend on natural formations or grids for their unfolding but create their own, often untrackable movements? Affinities have little to do with family ties or socially codified structures. They do not well up from a common spring or identified community. Rather, they lead to unexpected pairings and conglomerates of people and beings that defy supposedly natural arrangements.
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