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Herman Melville’s Typee depicts cannibalism at a time when the practice’s nature, and even its existence, is an uncertain question for its contemporary readers. During the colonization of Pacific islands such as the Marquesas, on which Melville spent time after abandoning a whaling vessel and subsequently set Typee, groups indigenous to the islands were often assumed to practice anthropophagy, but evidence for these practices was primarily second-hand and of limited reliability.
In her series of lyric essays Citizen: An American Lyric, Claudia Rankine employs the pronoun “you” in both an accusatory and uniting fashion. The feelings of Black people are often neglected and scorned, and Rankine’s direct address to the reader highlights the microaggressions they experience.
“God is dead.” So said Friedrich Nietzsche in 1882’s The Gay Science, but for some, God had been dead long before Nietzsche wrote His death into the public consciousness and put in His place stood a new breed of men, the Übermensch. Before Nietzsche, there was Fyodor Dostoevsky who, at the time of writing Crime and Punishment in 1866, set out to deconstruct this type of man who epitomized a distancing from the church, something the reformed clerical reactionary could not let succeed.
From the saturated pages of Watchmen emerges Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons’ antihero protagonist Rorschach, a stark representation of black and white against the vivid colouring of Watchmen’s setting and other characters. As the only character that does not adorn any bright colours, Rorschach appears to become Watchmen’s moral centre—the black and white amidst the chaotic colouring of his environment.
There are many similarities between Herman Melville’s 1846 novel Typee and Margaret Cavendish’s 1666 novel The Blazing-World. Both texts focus on an outsider who is given an intimate view of a society fundamentally different from their own. In Typee, a sailor named Tommo spends four months with the Typee, an Indigenous tribe on the South Pacific island of Nukuheva. Melville, through the character of Tommo, expresses his views on the European occupation and “civilization” of the Marquesas islands.
Icelandic Sagas all have in common the ubiquitous presence of friendships – among strangers, families, rulers, and members of a community. Two major currents of thought have aimed to explain the presence and function of these networks in Icelandic Sagas: friendship as a product of socially accepted morality, and friendship that exists to uphold Iceland’s legal and social infrastructure.
Herman Melville explored the art of carefully placed sexual innuendo, implied romance, and extended metaphor across multiple queer-coded texts throughout his 19th-century literary career. Typee, Billy Budd, and Moby Dick are all examples of notable work by Melville that feature queer-coded protagonists and clearly defined same-sex romantic subplots.
Painting with Words – The Illusive Art of Representation Appearance and Reality From the Perspective of Visual and Literary Art in Zbigniew Herbert’s Still Life with a Bridle
Still life with a Bridle navigates the stories conveyed by art and other artifacts from the Dutch Golden Age. Herbert records his “artistic journey”, with the keen eye of a historian, weaving in poetic “descriptions of places and artefacts of interest to him” (Slodczyk 127). The text ties many accurate facts loosely to reality, forming a collage of fact and fiction, both imaginative and informative.
At first glance, gender and sexuality have little to do with Jean Bauldrillard’s Simulacra and Simulation, with the irreversible collapse of the true, real, and referential. But Judith Butler, over the course of several essays, establishes that both constructs do, in fact, perfectly embody Baudrillard’s concept of the hyperreal.
Love is complicated, and the Greek poet Sappho knew this all too well. The lyrical beauty of Sappho’s poetry, and its intensely personal depiction of love and desire, led to acclaim from many of her contemporaries. In many ways, singer-songwriter Taylor Swift is Sappho’s modern analogue.