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Humanities, Volume 8, Issue 1 (March 2019)

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Open AccessArticle Illicit Motherhood: Recrafting Postcolonial Feminist Resistance in Edna O’Brien’s The Love Object and Jhumpa Lahiri’s Hell-Heaven
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010029
Received: 21 November 2018 / Revised: 2 February 2019 / Accepted: 11 February 2019 / Published: 14 February 2019
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Abstract
Cultural constructions of passive motherhood, especially within domestic spaces, gained currency in India and Ireland due to their shared colonial history, as well as the influence of anti-colonial masculinist nationalism on the social imaginary of these two nations. However, beginning from the latter [...] Read more.
Cultural constructions of passive motherhood, especially within domestic spaces, gained currency in India and Ireland due to their shared colonial history, as well as the influence of anti-colonial masculinist nationalism on the social imaginary of these two nations. However, beginning from the latter half of the nineteenth century, postcolonial literary voices have not only challenged the traditional gendering of public and private spaces but also interrogated docile constructions of womanhood, particularly essentialized representations of maternity. Domestic spaces have been critical narrative motifs in these postcolonial texts through simultaneously embodying patriarchal domination but also as sites where feminist resistance can be actualized by “transgress(ing) traditional views of … the home, as a static immobile place of oppression”. This paper, through a comparative analysis of maternal characters in Edna O’Brien’s The Love Object and Jhumpa Lahiri’s Hell-Heaven, argues that socially disapproved/illicit relationships in these two representative postcolonial Irish and Indian narratives function as matricentric feminist tactics that subvert limiting notions of both domestic spaces and gendered liminal postcolonial subjectivities. I highlight that within the context of male-centered colonial and nationalist literature, the trope of maternity configures the domestic-space as the “rightful place” for the existence of the feminine entity. Thus, when postcolonial feminist fiction reverses this tradition through constructing the “home and the female-body” as sites of possible resistance, it is a counter against dual oppression: both colonialism and patriarchy. My intervention further underscores the need for sustained conversations between the literary output of India and Ireland, within Postcolonial Literary Studies, with a particular acknowledgement for space and gender as pivotal categories in the “cultural analysis of empire”. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Negotiating Spaces in Women’s Writing)
Open AccessArticle How Karen Tei Yamashita Literalizes Feminist Subversion: Extreme Domesticity, Space-Off Reversals, and Virtual Resistances in Tropic of Orange
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 28; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010028
Received: 27 November 2018 / Revised: 4 February 2019 / Accepted: 5 February 2019 / Published: 12 February 2019
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Abstract
In Tropic of Orange (1997), Karen Tei Yamashita builds an expansive narrative on the premise that the Tropic of Cancer shifts mysteriously from its actual latitude, barely north of Mazatlán, México, to that of L.A.’s latitude: from 23.43692° north of the Equator to [...] Read more.
In Tropic of Orange (1997), Karen Tei Yamashita builds an expansive narrative on the premise that the Tropic of Cancer shifts mysteriously from its actual latitude, barely north of Mazatlán, México, to that of L.A.’s latitude: from 23.43692° north of the Equator to 34.0522° N. By doing so, Yamashita literally takes that which is “south of the border” and repositions it in a hub of neoliberal hegemony; that is, she takes what is below (“sub-”) and puts it on top (“-vert”). I read such a literal and magically realistic move as an allegorical template that guides the novel in its entirety, but more specifically, in its repositioning of women from their spaces of relegation to spaces animated by their resistances to such relegation; from spaces of dependency to spaces characterized by feminine influence. This essay examines three strategies through which feminist subversions may be accomplished according to Yamashita’s textual template: The first follows Susan Fraiman’s theory of Extreme Domesticity (Fraiman 2017) as it tracks how subservient spaces of home and household can become sites of nonconformity; the second takes its cue from the cinematic strategies of “space-off” and “reversal” as examples of how marginal or negative spaces can be leveraged against the male gaze (c.f. José Rodríguez Herrera’s analysis of Sarah Polley’s film adaptation of Alice Munro’s “The Bear Came Over The Mountain,” Herrera 2013); and the third engages my own notion of a spatial virtuality (“that which is present without being local,” Munro 2014) as a mode of resistance that culminates, ultimately, in “a condition of literature,” that is to say, a condition in which Tropic of Orange refers to the conditions of its own making instead of referring to the conditions that create it (ibid.). My tripartite method thus highlights and celebrates the domestic, cinematic, and technological spaces of Yamashita’s writing, respectively, just as it articulates how these spaces might also be read as subversively feminist and feminizing. But it also meditates formally and contextually, as Tropic of Orange’s condition of literature implies, a sort of ablated feminist narratology, even as it works toward feminist narratological ends. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Negotiating Spaces in Women’s Writing)
Open AccessArticle The Making of a Terrorist: Imagining Combatants’ Points of View in Troubles Literature
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 27; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010027
Received: 11 January 2019 / Revised: 4 February 2019 / Accepted: 6 February 2019 / Published: 8 February 2019
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Abstract
This article analyzes portrayals of paramilitary fighters in Irish literature from the Troubles (1968–1998). While the conflict between Protestant loyalists and Catholic nationalists has provoked many literary responses, most focus on noncombatants. This article reads Edna O’Brien’s novel House of Splendid Isolation (1994) [...] Read more.
This article analyzes portrayals of paramilitary fighters in Irish literature from the Troubles (1968–1998). While the conflict between Protestant loyalists and Catholic nationalists has provoked many literary responses, most focus on noncombatants. This article reads Edna O’Brien’s novel House of Splendid Isolation (1994) and Anne Devlin’s story “Naming the Names” (1986), two texts that succeed in portraying paramilitary characters as complex individuals who are not wholly defined by their violent acts, but each reaches a limit of imagination as well. In House of Splendid Isolation the paramilitary character Mac chooses silence over justifying himself to a hostile audience, and in “Naming the Names” the stream of consciousness style becomes increasingly fragmented, suggesting the paramilitary narrator is on the verge of a breakdown. As a result, both characters remain enigmatic, with aspects of their motives and thinking not fully intelligible. Both texts show that it is a struggle for a noncombatant to understand a paramilitary’s point of view, but these texts make readers want to engage in that struggle. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue War and Literature: Commiserating with the Enemy)
Open AccessArticle Enemy and Officers in Emilio Lussu’s Un anno sull’Altipiano
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 26; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010026
Received: 17 December 2018 / Revised: 30 January 2019 / Accepted: 1 February 2019 / Published: 6 February 2019
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Abstract
This essay explores the concept of enemy in Emilio Lussu’s WWI memoir Un anno sull’Altipiano (A Soldier on the Southern Front, 1938). The memoir portrays the conflict on the oft-forgotten Alpine Front, where Italian and Austro-Hungarian armies clashed from 1915 to 1918 in [...] Read more.
This essay explores the concept of enemy in Emilio Lussu’s WWI memoir Un anno sull’Altipiano (A Soldier on the Southern Front, 1938). The memoir portrays the conflict on the oft-forgotten Alpine Front, where Italian and Austro-Hungarian armies clashed from 1915 to 1918 in a series of battles fought at high altitudes. I argue that two crucial dynamics of modern warfare shape the concept of enemy in WWI literature: the impossibility of close-range encounters, which was due to the superiority of defensive firepower, and hatred for one’s own officers, which stemmed from the corrosive environment of the trenches, where the aggressive attitude of high-ranking officers often led hundreds of thousands to pointless death. I show how, in Lussu’s memoir, these dynamics subvert the traditional image of the enemy as imposed by military propaganda, and finally elicit feelings of empathy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue War and Literature: Commiserating with the Enemy)
Open AccessArticle Female Relays, Rice-Workers and flâneuse: The geo parler femme in Renata Viganò’s Work
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 25; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010025
Received: 20 November 2018 / Revised: 27 January 2019 / Accepted: 30 January 2019 / Published: 5 February 2019
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Abstract
The aim of this article was to reflect on how settings are used as narrative practices in the work of Renata Viganò, one of the most famous Italian female writers. Drawing upon Well’s concept of geo parler femme, this article examined the [...] Read more.
The aim of this article was to reflect on how settings are used as narrative practices in the work of Renata Viganò, one of the most famous Italian female writers. Drawing upon Well’s concept of geo parler femme, this article examined the extent to which the setting plays a role in Viganò’s fictional works and essays. Focusing on the most common stereotypes of gendered spatiality, the intention of the analysis was to point out that at specific historical moments, such as the Italian resistance movement and the post-war years, the traditional gender assignment of spaces was no longer valid. The idea of a well distinguished ‘limit’ that separates certain places as feminine from others as masculine in time of war becomes blurred and destabilizes the traditional dichotomy of public–private spaces. The dialectic masculine–feminine places are nonexistent and often completely reversed, turning the setting into one of the main narrative practices in novels, such as L’Agnese va a morire or Una storia di ragazze, as well as in politically engaged essays dedicated to female partisans and rice-workers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Negotiating Spaces in Women’s Writing)
Open AccessArticle Nubia Still Exists: On the Utility of the Nostalgic Space
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010024
Received: 27 November 2018 / Revised: 22 January 2019 / Accepted: 24 January 2019 / Published: 31 January 2019
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Abstract
The Egyptian government displaced all Nubian villages to build the High Dam. New generations of Egyptian Nubians still identify as displaced and live in a nostalgic virtual space that carries a rendition of a paradise-like old Nubia. I investigate this spatial phenomenon by [...] Read more.
The Egyptian government displaced all Nubian villages to build the High Dam. New generations of Egyptian Nubians still identify as displaced and live in a nostalgic virtual space that carries a rendition of a paradise-like old Nubia. I investigate this spatial phenomenon by surveying Nubian literary and oral tradition, which displays signs of belonging to a geography that is no longer material. This paper lays out a conceptualisation of this space of nostalgia perpetuated in a metanarrative of a utopian lost land, that poses it as a disembodied territory while nostalgia is territoriality. From my position as a Nubian woman and a scholar, I use auto-ethnographic tools to methodically decode and layout this territory. The paper offers empirical evidence of the effect of these virtual territories on materialised spatial production and, therefore, argues that Nubians remain space makers by carving their own virtual territory and that Nubia still exists. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Nostalgia)
Open AccessArticle From Maps to Stories: Dangerous Spaces in Agatha Christie’s Homes
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010023
Received: 27 November 2018 / Revised: 21 January 2019 / Accepted: 27 January 2019 / Published: 31 January 2019
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Abstract
In the common imagination, home denotes the physical space where human beings find protection, intimacy, and bliss. Home is a place of affection and warmth. This article proposes to analyze the perception of the place called home within Christie’s narratives and how her [...] Read more.
In the common imagination, home denotes the physical space where human beings find protection, intimacy, and bliss. Home is a place of affection and warmth. This article proposes to analyze the perception of the place called home within Christie’s narratives and how her fictional households are deprived of their protective value and become as blood soaked as the hard-boiled dirty back alleys. The article focuses on how every room occupies a different role in Christie’s fictional houses. There are safe rooms—the busiest rooms of the household where murder never happens—and dangerous rooms. The dangerous room—the murder scene—is described through the use of a map offered by the first-person narrator. The map provides the reader with important spatial information: this is the very place where the murder was perpetrated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Negotiating Spaces in Women’s Writing)
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Open AccessArticle Hidden in Plain Sight: Tourism Planning, Afro-Colombian Society and Community in Barú, Colombia
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010022
Received: 17 September 2018 / Revised: 16 January 2019 / Accepted: 24 January 2019 / Published: 30 January 2019
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Abstract
This article builds upon the scholarship of Alina Helg and other historians working on questions of racial identity in Colombia, and the Caribbean section of that country more specifically. Colombia is unique in that its identity is indigenous, African, as well as European. [...] Read more.
This article builds upon the scholarship of Alina Helg and other historians working on questions of racial identity in Colombia, and the Caribbean section of that country more specifically. Colombia is unique in that its identity is indigenous, African, as well as European. Its Afro-Colombian elements are often overlooked by virtue of the mestizo identity that has dominated settlement of its Andean highlands around the capital, Bogota. Using technical and social reports from tourism development on Barù Island, near Cartagena, this article explores the Afro-Colombian communities that established themselves on the island in the wake of emancipation in the mid-19th century, as well as the efforts of these communities to protect their rights. I also examine recent Constitutional Court decisions supporting the rights of Afro-Colombian communities like those on Barù against the developmental ambitions of governmental and private tourism developers who were intent on transforming the island into a mass tourism destination. The article concludes that recent legal shifts towards protecting Afro-Colombian rights secured a recent victory in favor of the islanders vis-à-vis designs of the state to impose its vision of global tourism development there. Full article
Open AccessArticle Monitoring and Managing Human Stressors to Coastal Cultural Heritage in Svalbard
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010021
Received: 23 November 2018 / Revised: 17 January 2019 / Accepted: 23 January 2019 / Published: 28 January 2019
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Abstract
Svalbard’s cultural heritage sites are important remnants of an international history in the High North. Cultural heritage in the Arctic is being impacted by climate and environmental change as well as increased human activity. Tourism is a potential cause of transformation in cultural [...] Read more.
Svalbard’s cultural heritage sites are important remnants of an international history in the High North. Cultural heritage in the Arctic is being impacted by climate and environmental change as well as increased human activity. Tourism is a potential cause of transformation in cultural heritage sites, such as increased wear and tear, creation of paths and traces as people walk through cultural environments. Cultural heritage management is therefore an increasingly challenging endeavor as management authorities must take under consideration multiple impacts and threats to cultural heritage sites in a changing environment. Based on research conducted in Svalbard from 2014 to 2016 on methods for long-term systematic cultural heritage monitoring, this paper will discuss dilemmas for a sustainable use and management of vulnerable cultural heritage sites in the Arctic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bayscapes—Shaping the Coastal Interface through Time)
Open AccessEssay Of Mirrors and Bell Jars. Heterotopia and Liminal Spaces as Reconfigurations of Female Identity in Sylvia Plath
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 20; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010020
Received: 26 November 2018 / Revised: 12 January 2019 / Accepted: 22 January 2019 / Published: 24 January 2019
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Abstract
The poetry of Sylvia Plath (1932–1963) has received a considerable number of critical responses, among which spatial analysis occupies a minor position, although her texts explore complex relationships between subject and context. Drawing from a threefold theoretical apparatus (Bachelard’s theory of the poetic [...] Read more.
The poetry of Sylvia Plath (1932–1963) has received a considerable number of critical responses, among which spatial analysis occupies a minor position, although her texts explore complex relationships between subject and context. Drawing from a threefold theoretical apparatus (Bachelard’s theory of the poetic space, the Foucauldian concept of heterotopia, and the trope of liminality), this article focuses on the analysis of Plath’s increasing use of in-between spaces and objects of transition and transformations (mirrors, thresholds, windows), as well as on her predilection for heterotopic and alienating sceneries (hospital rooms, cemeteries), in both her poetry and prose. The study first acknowledges Plath’s choice of spatial imagery as a progressive orientation towards transitional states and places of otherness and ambivalence. Then, it highlights the specific role of heterotopic and liminal spaces in the process of reconfiguration of female identity. Given the impossibility for the female subject to rely on imprisoning domestic spheres to suture the edges of her fragmented self, reconceptualization of her own consciousness only becomes possible in the movement across a threshold. The analysis finally determines that the poetic evocation of spaces of conflict and difference paradoxically contributes to the shaping of female identity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Negotiating Spaces in Women’s Writing)
Open AccessArticle Subverting the Nation-State Through Post-Partition Nostalgia: Joginder Paul’s Sleepwalkers
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 19; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010019
Received: 18 September 2018 / Revised: 14 January 2019 / Accepted: 18 January 2019 / Published: 23 January 2019
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Abstract
With the advent of the Progressive Writers Movement, Urdu Literature was marked with a heightened form of social realism during the Partition of British India in 1947. Joginder Paul, once a part of this movement, breaks away from this realist tradition in his [...] Read more.
With the advent of the Progressive Writers Movement, Urdu Literature was marked with a heightened form of social realism during the Partition of British India in 1947. Joginder Paul, once a part of this movement, breaks away from this realist tradition in his Urdu novella, Khwabrau (Sleepwalkers), published in 1990. Sleepwalkers shifts the dominant realist strain in the form and content of Urdu fiction to open a liminal “third space” that subverts the notion of hegemonic reality. Sleepwalkers is based on a time, many years after the Partition in the city of Karachi, and focuses on the “mohajirs” from Lucknow who construct a mnemonic existential space by constructing a simulacrum of pre-Partition Lucknow (now in India). This paper examines the reconceptualization of spaces through the realm of political nostalgia and the figure of the refugee subject “performing” this nostalgia. This nostalgic reconstruction of space, thus, becomes a “heterotopia” in Foucauldian terms, one that causes a rupture in the unities of time and space and the idea of nation-hood. The refugee subjects’ subversion of the linearity of time opens a different time in the narration of a nation that necessitates that the wholeness of the “imagined” physical space of a nation be questioned. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Nostalgia)
Open AccessArticle Latin American Cities: From Subservient Reproductions to Intercontinental Dialogues
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010018
Received: 21 November 2018 / Revised: 15 January 2019 / Accepted: 17 January 2019 / Published: 22 January 2019
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Abstract
This paper investigates the circulation of ideas regarding the city among selected countries in Latin America. It discusses convergences between academic and scientific institutions and investigative weakness in partnerships between Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico. It identifies two historical moments: one of [...] Read more.
This paper investigates the circulation of ideas regarding the city among selected countries in Latin America. It discusses convergences between academic and scientific institutions and investigative weakness in partnerships between Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico. It identifies two historical moments: one of vertical dialogues between Latin America and central countries in the elaboration of urban plans (20th century) and another of contemporary academic exchange signalling a horizontal dialogue that is fragile and sporadic but distinct from those observed in the past. Empirical reference is obtained from the analysis of scientific events and papers published by distinguished post-graduate programs concerning urban topics in selected countries, during the time frame of 2000–2015. The methodological approach is based on a bibliographic review and content analysis. Results indicate that the old “one-way” of transfer of urban planning ideas from central countries to Latin America is changing; slowly, the continent has been growing more independent in terms of knowledge creation and circulation. Full article
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Open AccessArticle The Geography of ‘Otherness’: Spaces of Conflict in Smaro Kamboureli’s in the Second Person
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010017
Received: 11 November 2018 / Revised: 16 January 2019 / Accepted: 17 January 2019 / Published: 21 January 2019
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Abstract
In today’s “liquid” society, boundaries and limits are shifting or disorienting: belonging to no place, not knowing where ‘home’ is, underlines the sense of uncertainty and in-betweenness experienced by people. This contribution suggests five spatial issues Greek-born Canadian author Smaro Kamboureli has to [...] Read more.
In today’s “liquid” society, boundaries and limits are shifting or disorienting: belonging to no place, not knowing where ‘home’ is, underlines the sense of uncertainty and in-betweenness experienced by people. This contribution suggests five spatial issues Greek-born Canadian author Smaro Kamboureli has to negotiate with in her ‘poetic diary’ in the second person, where she investigates the duality of the self, displaying the double “I” of the writer’s split subjectivity on a concrete (Greece) as well as abstract (language) place of living. Kamboureli’s account of a duel with and a paradoxical courting of what was and is now for her “the place of language” is related to the awareness of inhabiting a “third” zone of expectations: the difference of origin, of country, of point of view. In conclusion, the different levels of spatial negotiations Kamboureli has had to come to terms with have made her a completely different person. Her life on the border, epitomized in turn by airports, boats, Greece, and the Greek islands, is indeed an endless research of, as well as a conflict with, the ‘Other’, which opens up questions about the relativity of the space/place dichotomy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Negotiating Spaces in Women’s Writing)
Open AccessArticle Extractive Poetics: Marine Energies in Scottish Literature
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010016
Received: 26 September 2018 / Revised: 22 November 2018 / Accepted: 16 January 2019 / Published: 18 January 2019
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Abstract
Following the recent call to ‘put the ocean’s agitation and historicity back onto our mental maps and into the study of literature’ (Yaeger 2010), this article addresses the histories and cultures of marine energy extraction in modern Scottish literature. The burgeoning discipline of [...] Read more.
Following the recent call to ‘put the ocean’s agitation and historicity back onto our mental maps and into the study of literature’ (Yaeger 2010), this article addresses the histories and cultures of marine energy extraction in modern Scottish literature. The burgeoning discipline of the Energy Humanities has recently turned its attentions towards Scottish literature as a valuable area of study when contemplating the relationships between energy and cultural production. Most recently, scholars have focused their analysis on the histories of North Sea oil and gas production and have worked to juxtapose the long histories of land clearance in the Highlands and islands alongside contemporary narratives of exile and exploitation experienced by Scotland’s coastal oil communities. The forms of spatial injustice incurred through the recent histories of what Derek Gladwin terms ‘Oil Clearance’ (Gladwin 2017) or Graeme Macdonald identifies as ‘petro-marginalisation’ (Macdonald 2015), is often solely registered through terrestrial environments. This article urges the adoption of an oceanic perspective, one which registers how the extractive politics of modern petroculture in Scotland not only presents major challenges for terrestrial environments and communities, but holds specific ramifications for the ways in which we currently imagine and interact with oceanic space. Indeed, as Macdonald has noted, the North Sea is in many ways ‘wholly regarded as a productive environment of marine capitalism synonymous with oil’ (2015). What does it mean to read the ocean through oil? By adopting an oceanic perspective, this article considers the ways in which the exploitative dynamics of offshore petroculture in the 1970s coincides with an incredibly damaging and problematic cultural construction of the ocean. But as Scotland moves towards a new era of low-carbon energy production, how might this construction of the ocean change? The closing half of this article considers the ways in which the extractivist histories and spatial injustices of petroculture are resisted through contemporary poetic engagements with new marine-based energy technologies, namely, wave and tidal power. In examining a range of work from artists and poets such as Alec Finlay, Laura Watts, Lila Matsumoto and Hannah Imlach, this article further argues that the recent turn towards marine renewables not only signals a new future for a low-carbon Scotland, but that the advent of renewable technologies provides contemporary poets with new materials through which to imagine alternative models of community, power, and relation in an era of environmental change. Full article
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Open AccessArticle African by Exposure: Caregivers, Madness, and the Contagious Other in García Márquez’s Of Love and Other Demons and Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010015
Received: 19 November 2018 / Revised: 15 December 2018 / Accepted: 15 January 2019 / Published: 18 January 2019
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Abstract
The following article discusses Gabriel García Márquez’s Of Love and Other Demons and Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea. Specifically, this article will discuss the parallel ways that two novels critique the nature of postcolonial development in the Caribbean, particularly in regard to [...] Read more.
The following article discusses Gabriel García Márquez’s Of Love and Other Demons and Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea. Specifically, this article will discuss the parallel ways that two novels critique the nature of postcolonial development in the Caribbean, particularly in regard to race and hybridity. Within the novels, the child protagonists and their African/black creole nursemaids follow surprisingly similar plots, though the settings, contexts, and styles of the two texts differ greatly. In these two novels while the white protagonists both die because of their hybrid navigation of their environment, their nurse/mothers survive, largely because of their maintenance of African practices. In many ways, the nurse mothers’ survival and attempts to heal their charges present potential antidotes for the “disease” produced by slavery. The purpose of this paper is to explore those parallel developments in plot, and to look at the ways the two texts disrupt and reinforce colonial hegemonic norms through their depictions of both the nurses and their charges. Full article
Open AccessArticle Portugal in the European Network of Marine Science Heritage and Outreach (19th–20th Centuries)
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 14; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010014
Received: 30 November 2018 / Revised: 10 January 2019 / Accepted: 11 January 2019 / Published: 17 January 2019
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Abstract
The gradual consciousness of the scientific and economic riches of marine life is rooted in the legacy of some pillars of scientific production and dissemination in institutions such as natural history museums, aquariums, and maritime stations. Nowadays, one of the biggest issues of [...] Read more.
The gradual consciousness of the scientific and economic riches of marine life is rooted in the legacy of some pillars of scientific production and dissemination in institutions such as natural history museums, aquariums, and maritime stations. Nowadays, one of the biggest issues of these scientific collections of species (marine or others) is their contextual interpretation which demands its original collection point, collectors, and original aims. The current research focuses on the origin of collections of marine specimens in Portugal as well as their historical evolution. In this particular approach, we assess the connection of the Portuguese natural history museums, universities and aquariums to similar European institutions since the mid-19th century, crossing primary sources from different archives. It was possible to reconstruct connections with the Zoological Station of the bay of Naples (Italy), the Maritime Museum of Monaco, and Aquariums of Monaco, France, and England. We identify both informers and the circulation of zoological specimens that underpin Museums and Aquariums collections that are today important scientific heritage repositories for a larger understanding of marine biodiversity and its threats, and core places of aesthetic contemplation and of philosophical discussion about the evolution of scientific knowledge. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bayscapes—Shaping the Coastal Interface through Time)
Open AccessArticle Regional Planning and the Environmental Impact of Coastal Tourism: The Mission Racine for the Redevelopment of Languedoc-Roussillon’s Littoral
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010013
Received: 11 September 2018 / Revised: 20 December 2018 / Accepted: 10 January 2019 / Published: 14 January 2019
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Abstract
Research on the coast has highlighted the role of mass tourism as a driver of littoral urbanization. This article emphasizes the role of public policy by focusing on Languedoc-Roussillon in Mediterranean France. This littoral was the target of a state-driven development initiative known [...] Read more.
Research on the coast has highlighted the role of mass tourism as a driver of littoral urbanization. This article emphasizes the role of public policy by focusing on Languedoc-Roussillon in Mediterranean France. This littoral was the target of a state-driven development initiative known as Mission Racine, which aimed to promote the growth of what was seen as a backward area via the development of seaside tourism. For that purpose, the Mission promoted coordinated interventions including forest management, eradication of mosquitoes, construction of resorts, and transport infrastructure. This large-scale redevelopment significantly reshaped the littoral environment, severely impacted pre-existing forms of coastal activities and launched a new tourism industry. The legacy of the Mission, however, also included innovative land-use planning, which established protected areas and sought to contain urbanization. This case study illustrates the ambiguities of public policies for the coast, which can act alternatively as drivers of development or conservation and at times of both, and therein lies the importance of a contextual analysis of their role. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bayscapes—Shaping the Coastal Interface through Time)
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Open AccessArticle Perpetual Vanishing: Animal Lives in Contemporary Scottish Fiction
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010012
Received: 31 August 2018 / Revised: 8 October 2018 / Accepted: 12 January 2019 / Published: 14 January 2019
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Abstract
Animals, writes Akira Mizuta Lippit, ‘exist in a state of perpetual vanishing’: they haunt human concerns, but rarely appear as themselves. This is especially notable in contemporary Scottish fiction. While other national literatures often reflect the ‘animal turn’ in contemporary theory, the number [...] Read more.
Animals, writes Akira Mizuta Lippit, ‘exist in a state of perpetual vanishing’: they haunt human concerns, but rarely appear as themselves. This is especially notable in contemporary Scottish fiction. While other national literatures often reflect the ‘animal turn’ in contemporary theory, the number of twenty-first-century Scottish novels concerned with human–animal relations remains disproportionately small. Looking at a broad cross-section of recent and understudied novels, including Mandy Haggith’s Bear Witness (2013), Ian Stephen’s A Book of Death and Fish (2014), Andrew O’Hagan’s The Life and Opinions of Maf the Dog, and of His Friend Marilyn Monroe (2010), Malachy Tallack’s The Valley at the Centre of the World (2018), James Robertson’s To Be Continued (2016), and Sarah Hall’s The Wolf Border (2015) highlights the marginalisation of both nonhuman animals and texts centred on them. The relative absence of engagement with animal studies in Scottish fiction and criticism suggests new opportunities for reevaluating the formulation of environmental concerns in a Scottish context. By moving away from the unified concepts of ‘the land’ to a perspective that includes the precarious relations between humans, nonhuman animals, and their environment, these texts highlight the need for greater, and more nuanced, engagement with fictional representations of nonhuman animals. Full article
Open AccessArticle “The Past Is Never Dead. It’s Not Even Past”: The Ambivalent Call of Nostalgic Memory in Richard Ford’s Short Story “Calling” (A Multitude of Sins, 2001)
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010011
Received: 22 October 2018 / Revised: 9 January 2019 / Accepted: 9 January 2019 / Published: 14 January 2019
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Abstract
This article focuses on Richard Ford’s short story “Calling,” collected in the volume entitled A Multitude of Sins (2001). It consists of the detailed recalling by a first-person narrator, from the vantage point of adulthood, of a duck-hunting outing with his father at [...] Read more.
This article focuses on Richard Ford’s short story “Calling,” collected in the volume entitled A Multitude of Sins (2001). It consists of the detailed recalling by a first-person narrator, from the vantage point of adulthood, of a duck-hunting outing with his father at a moment of acute family crisis when he was still a teenager. This episode, redolent of America’s nostalgic motif of male bonding and father-son transmission in the midst of mythical American nature, is shown to have proved a pathetic failure at the time, and the story stages—to pick up Svetlana Boym’s famous distinction between two main types of nostalgia—the enlightening “reflective” effects of recalling this moment of “restorative” longing for the protagonist. However, the highly analytical narrator does not consciously dwell upon the peripheral yet disturbing presence of two grotesque characters that, I contend, are the locus of the implicit meaning of the text. Through precise textual reading and references to Southern Gothic, I indeed argue that the subtext of “Calling” invites the reader to journey back into a region’s (the South’s) troubled collective past and to question its own relation to nostalgia. “Calling” thus also stages the ambivalence of nostalgic longing on the collective plane as it shows willful nostalgic recollection wavering in the face of the return of the historical repressed, that of America’s ineffable original sin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Nostalgia)
Open AccessArticle Migratory Realities: The Interplay of Landscapes in the Guyanese Emigrant’s Reality in Jan Lowe Shinebourne’s The Godmother and Other Stories
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010010
Received: 29 November 2018 / Revised: 3 January 2019 / Accepted: 8 January 2019 / Published: 12 January 2019
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Abstract
Guyana’s high rate of migration has resulted in a sizeable Guyanese diaspora that continues to negotiate the connection with its homeland. Jan Lowe Shinebourne’s The Godmother and Other Stories opens avenues of understanding the experiences of emigrated Guyanese through the lens of transnational [...] Read more.
Guyana’s high rate of migration has resulted in a sizeable Guyanese diaspora that continues to negotiate the connection with its homeland. Jan Lowe Shinebourne’s The Godmother and Other Stories opens avenues of understanding the experiences of emigrated Guyanese through the lens of transnational migration. Four protagonists, one each from the stories “The Godmother,” “Hopscotch,” “London and New York” and “Rebirth” act as literary case studies in the mechanisms involved in a Guyanese transnational migrant’s experience. Through a structuralist analysis, I show how the use of literary devices such as titles, layers and paradigms facilitate the presentation of the interplay of landscapes in the transnational migrant’s experience. The significance of the story titles is briefly analysed. Then, how memories of the homeland are layered on the landscape of residence and how this interplay stabilises the migrant are examined. Thirdly, how ambivalence can set in after elements from the homeland come into physical contact with the migrant on the landscape of residence, thereby shifting the nostalgic paradigm into an unstable structure, is highlighted. Finally, it is observed that as a result of the paradigm shift, the migrant must then operate on a shifted interplay that can be confounding. Altogether, the text offers an opportunity to explore migratory realities in the Guyanese emigrant’s experience. Full article
Open AccessArticle Current Status of European Oyster Decline and Restoration in Germany
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010009
Received: 29 November 2018 / Revised: 8 January 2019 / Accepted: 8 January 2019 / Published: 11 January 2019
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Abstract
Marine ecosystems of temperate regions are highly modified by human activity and far from their original natural status. The North Sea, known as an intensively used area, has lost its offshore oyster grounds due to overexploitation in a relatively short time. Native oyster [...] Read more.
Marine ecosystems of temperate regions are highly modified by human activity and far from their original natural status. The North Sea, known as an intensively used area, has lost its offshore oyster grounds due to overexploitation in a relatively short time. Native oyster beds as a once abundant and ecologically highly important biogenic reef-type have vanished from the North Sea ecosystem in most areas of both their former distribution and magnitude. Worldwide, oyster stocks have been severely exploited over the past centuries. According to estimates, about 85% of the worldwide oyster reef habitats have been destroyed over the course of the last century. This loss of oyster populations has meant far more than just the loss of a valuable food resource. Oyster reefs represent a characteristic benthic community which offers a variety of valuable ecosystem services: better water quality, local decrease of toxic algal blooms, increase in nutrient uptake, increase of bentho-pelagic coupling, increase in species richness, increase of multidimensional biogenic structures which provide habitat, food, and protection for numerous invertebrate and fish species. The aim of oyster restoration is to promote redevelopment of this valuable missing habitat. The development of strategies, methods, and procedures for a sustainable restoration of the European oyster Ostrea edulis in the German North Sea is currently a focus of marine nature conservation. Main drivers for restoring this ecological key species are the enhancement of biodiversity and ecosystem services in the marine environment. Results of these investigations will support the future development and implementation of a large-scale and long-term German native oyster restoration programme to re-establish a healthy population of this once-abundant species now absent from the region. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bayscapes—Shaping the Coastal Interface through Time)
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Open AccessArticle Nostalgia, Motherhood, and Adoption: Two Contemporary Swedish Examples
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010008
Received: 14 September 2018 / Revised: 21 December 2018 / Accepted: 8 January 2019 / Published: 10 January 2019
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Abstract
This paper explores the notion of nostalgia in two recent Swedish narratives of transnational adoption: Christina Rickardsson’s Sluta aldrig gå, 2016, (published in English as Never Stop Walking in 2017), and Cilla Naumann’s Bära barnet hem (“Carrying the Child Home”, 2015). The [...] Read more.
This paper explores the notion of nostalgia in two recent Swedish narratives of transnational adoption: Christina Rickardsson’s Sluta aldrig gå, 2016, (published in English as Never Stop Walking in 2017), and Cilla Naumann’s Bära barnet hem (“Carrying the Child Home”, 2015). The two narratives deal with adoption from South America to Sweden, include autobiographical content, and enable a comparison between an adoptee memoir (Rickardsson) and a parent-authored text (Naumann). Both texts center on maternal images, but the analysis suggests that Rickardsson’s narrative echoes the borderland nostalgia characteristic of adoptee writing. The adoptee memoirs, being reflective in mode and restorative in purpose, occupy a borderland between the two forms of nostalgia described by Boym (2001), while interrogating the temporal, spatial and affiliative boundaries of transnational adoption. Naumann’s nostalgic enterprise incorporates the mirrors, doubles and ghosts of reflective nostalgia. These representations are a fruitful means to represent the “other” family, and the alternative lives that were left behind in the process of adoption. Ultimately, her text suggests the limitations of the autobiographical mode and illustrates the capacity of fiction to provide a symbolic register in which to articulate the unspeakable aspects of adoption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Contemporary Nostalgia)
Open AccessEditorial Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Humanities in 2018
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010007
Published: 9 January 2019
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Abstract
Rigorous peer-review is the corner-stone of high-quality academic publishing [...] Full article
Open AccessArticle Sour Beer at the Boar’s Head: Salvaging Shakespeare’s Alewife, Mistress Quickly
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010006
Received: 14 November 2018 / Revised: 28 December 2018 / Accepted: 4 January 2019 / Published: 9 January 2019
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Abstract
Using William Shakespeare’s character Mistress Nell Quickly as an example, this article contends that familiarity with both the literary tradition of alewives and the historical conditions in which said literary tradition brewed aids in revising our interpretation of working-class women on the early [...] Read more.
Using William Shakespeare’s character Mistress Nell Quickly as an example, this article contends that familiarity with both the literary tradition of alewives and the historical conditions in which said literary tradition brewed aids in revising our interpretation of working-class women on the early modern stage. Mistress Quickly, the multi-faceted comic character in three history plays and a city-comedy, resembles closely those women with whom Shakespeare and his contemporaries would have lived and worked in their day-to-day lives. Rather than dismissing her role as minor or merely comic, as previous criticism largely has, scholarship can embrace this character type and her narrative as an example to complicate teleological progressions for women. Full article
Open AccessArticle Inscription and ‘Anscription’: Surface and System in Cybernetics, Deconstruction, and Don DeLillo
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 5; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010005
Received: 12 September 2018 / Revised: 21 December 2018 / Accepted: 3 January 2019 / Published: 8 January 2019
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Abstract
This essay proposes the concept of ‘anscription’, and employs it to re-think some of the typical valences of inscription in media theory. The word is derived from the German anschreiben, which can simply mean, ‘to write up’, but also refers to the [...] Read more.
This essay proposes the concept of ‘anscription’, and employs it to re-think some of the typical valences of inscription in media theory. The word is derived from the German anschreiben, which can simply mean, ‘to write up’, but also refers to the specific act, and the set of social relations that come into place, when one writes something up on a blackboard. Not quite encompassed by inscription, it offers an essential counterpart to the term for media-oriented thinkers. The essay draws out this corresponding function through readings of three imagined (but not-quite-imaginary) media, across which emerges a dialectic in the cultural imaginary of inscription. The first comes from the mathematician Norbert Wiener’s description of a mechanism that would translate written text into tactile impressions; the second, from Jacques Derrida’s historical framing of the project of deconstruction in relation to writing systems; and the third, from a thirty-two-page description of an American football game in Don DeLillo’s 1972 novel, End Zone. Each will offer a different exemplification of the function termed ‘anscription’. Just as significantly, each example presents this function in relation to the technical possibilities of media and articulates it through a theory of the body that is entangled with writing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Anatomy of Inscription)
Open AccessArticle [Mis-]managing Fisheries on the West Coast of Ireland in the Nineteenth Century
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010004
Received: 21 November 2018 / Revised: 22 December 2018 / Accepted: 25 December 2018 / Published: 7 January 2019
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Abstract
This study focuses on the cultural heritage of artisan coastal fishing in the west of Ireland in the 19th century. The town and port of Dingle, County Kerry, offers an important case study on the progress of local development and changing British policies. [...] Read more.
This study focuses on the cultural heritage of artisan coastal fishing in the west of Ireland in the 19th century. The town and port of Dingle, County Kerry, offers an important case study on the progress of local development and changing British policies. While there was clearly an abundance of fish, the poverty and the lack of capital for improvements in ports, vessels, gear, education, and transportation, left the fishing industry underdeveloped until well after the 1890s. In addition, a growing rift developed between the traditional farmer-fishermen and the new middle-class capitalist companies. After several royal commissions examined the fishing industry, the leading ichthyologists of the day concluded that an abundance of fish could be taken without fear of overfishing. The utilitarian economic principle became dominant, changing the previous non-interventionist policies. In the end, there was little concern for sustainability. The mismanagement of commercial fishing in the west of Ireland stemmed from a series of factors, including the increasing need for protein in Britain, technological developments that allowed greater fish catch, and the Conservative government’s political policy of ‘constructive unionism’ that attempted to develop the Irish economy to preserve the kingdom. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bayscapes—Shaping the Coastal Interface through Time)
Open AccessArticle The Beat Generation Meets the Hungry Generation: U.S.—Calcutta Networks and the 1960s “Revolt of the Personal”
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010003
Received: 15 October 2018 / Revised: 18 December 2018 / Accepted: 21 December 2018 / Published: 2 January 2019
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Abstract
This essay explores the relationship between the U.S.-based Beat literary movement and the Hungry Generation literary movement centered in and around Calcutta, India, in the early 1960s. It discusses a trip Allen Ginsberg and Peter Orlovsky took to India in 1962, where they [...] Read more.
This essay explores the relationship between the U.S.-based Beat literary movement and the Hungry Generation literary movement centered in and around Calcutta, India, in the early 1960s. It discusses a trip Allen Ginsberg and Peter Orlovsky took to India in 1962, where they met writers associated with the Hungry Generation. It further explains how Lawrence Ferlinghetti, owner of City Lights Books in San Francisco, was inspired to start a new literary magazine, City Lights Journal, by Ginsberg’s letters from India, which included work by Hungry Generation writers. The essay shows how City Lights Journal packaged the Hungry Generation writers as the Indian wing of the Beat movement, and focuses in particular on the work of Malay Roy Choudhury, the founder of the Hungry Generation who had been prosecuted for obscenity for his poem “Stark Electric Jesus”. The essay emphasizes in particular the close relationship between aesthetics and politics in Hungry Generation writing, and suggests that Ginsberg’s own mid-1960s turn to political activism via the imagination is reminiscent of strategies employed by Hungry Generation writers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Beat Generation Writers as Readers of World Literature)
Open AccessArticle The Digital Griotte: Bessora’s Para/Textual Discourses on Identity Politics and Neocolonialism in Contemporary France
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010002
Received: 26 November 2018 / Revised: 23 December 2018 / Accepted: 29 December 2018 / Published: 1 January 2019
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Abstract
This article examines Bessora’s literary and digital criticism of postcolonial France, particularly in her first novel, 53 cm, and on her website, Tendre peau de vache. Bessora’s use of digital media in particular allows her to chronicle unofficial discourses on immigration, [...] Read more.
This article examines Bessora’s literary and digital criticism of postcolonial France, particularly in her first novel, 53 cm, and on her website, Tendre peau de vache. Bessora’s use of digital media in particular allows her to chronicle unofficial discourses on immigration, migration, and identity politics in France as alternative textual productions to her printed novels. Since there is a gap in academic studies regarding author websites and their contents, this study aims to start a conversation on the discursive function of an author’s digital textual productions. Following Jean Baudrillard’s theory in The Spirit of Terrorism according to which a terrorist act is successful when it distances itself from the real and exalts itself in the realm of the symbolic, this article argues that Bessora’s digital discourses on the post-Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack effectively denounce the disappearance of the real in French culture in favor of ideals such as the #jesuischarlie movement. From the publication of 53 cm in 1999 to her commentaries on France’s alienation of the lowest socio-economic class in Le Testament de Nicolas (2016), the self-proclaimed griotte’s print and digital productions complement each other and bring the reader closer to an understanding of institutional neocolonialist practices in France. Full article
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Dalmatians and Dacians—Forms of Belonging and Displacement in the Roman Empire
Humanities 2019, 8(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/h8010001
Received: 22 June 2018 / Revised: 21 November 2018 / Accepted: 21 November 2018 / Published: 24 December 2018
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Abstract
Inspired by the catalyst papers, this essay traces the impact of displacement on existing and emerging identities of groups and individuals which were relocated to ‘frontier’ areas in the aftermath of conflict and conquest by Rome during the reign of emperor Trajan. The [...] Read more.
Inspired by the catalyst papers, this essay traces the impact of displacement on existing and emerging identities of groups and individuals which were relocated to ‘frontier’ areas in the aftermath of conflict and conquest by Rome during the reign of emperor Trajan. The Dacian Wars, ending in 106 CE with the conquest of Dacia by Roman armies, not only resulted in the deliberate destruction of settlements and the society of the conquered, but also the removal of young Dacian men by forced recruitment into the Roman army, some serving the emperor in the Eastern Egyptian Desert. In turn, the wealth in gold and silver of the newly established Roman province of Dacia was exploited by mining communities arriving from Dalmatia. As a result of these ‘displacements’ caused by war and the shared experience of mining in the remote mountains of Dacia or guarding roads through the desert east of the Nile, we can trace the emergence of new senses of belonging alongside the retainment of fixed group identities. Full article
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