Modern information technologies have radically transfigured human experience. The extensive use of mnemonic devices, for instance, has redefined the subject by externalizing aspects of inner consciousness. These transformations involve the incorporeal but deeply felt, violent dislocations of human experience, traumas that are grounded in reality but which challenge symbolic resources because they are difficult to articulate. I am interested in how the unseen wounding of mnemonic intervention is registered in the “impossible” language of speculative fiction (SF). SF is both rooted in the “real” and “estranged” from reality, and thus able to give form to impossible injuries. This paper argues that Haruki Murakami uses the mode of SF in his novel, Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, to explore how mnemonic substitutes interfere with the complex process of remembering World War II in Japan. I will demonstrate how, through SF, Murakami is able to give form to an unseen crisis of memory in postwar Japan, a crisis marked by the unspeakable shock of war and by the trauma that results from the intrusion of artificial memories upon one’s consciousness of history.
Maria Alcordo Kabigon’s column “Ang Panid ni Manding Karya” in Bisaya from the late 1940s to the 1950s is considered as one of the momentous contributions of the Philippines’ oldest Cebuano language magazine. Kabigon used the pen name Manding Karya to advise letter senders, and the letter and advice were published after the war in Bisaya. On average, she received 20 letters per day for her column, with most letter senders being men. This article aims to expand the scope of Kabigon’s creative abilities by demonstrating her metaphorical language in her advice column, providing a variety of approaches to experience her poetic genius, and allowing her to connect more with her readers, particularly those from Visayas and Mindanao. By examining Kabigon’s writing style, it can answer how she epitomizes the popularity of her column as she is recognized as a professional adviser as well as a writer in Cebuano literature. The article investigates Kabigon’s pasumbingay or Cebuano poetics. Also, the advice of Kabigon was examined to convey its integration into Edith Tiempo’s restoration context: preserving the individual’s integrity, confirming ultimate values, defining significant purpose, and developing a reasonable worldview. This article used a qualitative research method that included descriptive research that conveyed a content analysis. The main source of the study, Kabigon’s “Panid ni Manding Karya,” can be found at the University of San Carlos, specifically at the Cebuano Studies Center. Kabigon makes use of nature to improve the poetic quality of her advice. When responding to a letter, she employs metaphors and symbolism to provide a brief but profound response. However, due to the limited space in her advice column, her responses are short. Despite the magazine’s limited space, her use of figurative language and symbolism suggests her solution to continue providing effective advice. As a result, her writing style promotes critical thinking as well as imagination.
Yan Geling’s early work Female Grassland雌性的草地 (Yan, 1989) is a novel published in 1989, while Celestial Bath 天浴 (Yan, 2008) is a short story published in 1996. Both of Yan Geling’s works focus on female sent-down youth, with stories set in the grasslands of the Tibetan pastoral countryside during the mid-1970s, in the waning years of the Cultural Revolution 文化大革命 (1966-1976). This paper discusses women’s fragmentation to analyze the obstacles to women’s liberation during the sent-down youth movement, illustrating how female sent-down youth’ tragic experiences resulted because of political power.
Nick Joaquin (Nicomedes Márquez Joaquín, (1917-2004) is known for his unique style of writing, tropical Gothic, and applying gothic elements in his stories and novels. This paper examines his first novel The Woman Who Had Two Navels through the lens of postcolonial theory. The paper also investigates gothic narratives in his novel by applying David Punter’s literary-historical approach. Punter (2000), in his book Postcolonial Imaginings: Fictions of a New World Order, examines the metamorphoses of the Gothic as a genre in some selected novels and poems. The book depicts new manifestations of the Gothic during 20th century literature. This paper attempts to investigate how the elements of postcolonial Gothic as discussed by Punter are manifested in Joaquin’s novel. In doing so, the contrapuntal method of reading, introduced by Edward Said (1993), is also applied to explore the hidden parts of history in the novel.
The aim of this paper is to explore the issues of peer rejection and revenge among adolescents through their portrayal in young adult literature (YAL). Adopting the lens of Lacanian theory on subjectivity and desire, the paper analyses a revenge plot in Karen M. McManus’s novel One of Us Is Lying and its origins. It argues that peer rejection contributes to contradictory self-concepts; how adolescent characters view themselves clash at some point with how others regard them, leading them to seek retribution. Their attempt at revenge will be examined along the lines of Lacanian psychoanalysis, and the paper argues that their revenge is driven by the impulse to fulfil the Other’s desire, which eventually fails due to the unobtainable nature of the desire itself.
This paper seeks to explore three modes of cultural identification presented in Kiran Desai’s The Inheritance of Loss. With three intersecting plotlines, the novel focuses on three divergent modes of cultural identification in different spatio-temporal contexts. The first kind of cultural identification is imbued with a sense of foreignness, exemplified by the judge, Jemubhai, whose cultural identity is deeply shaped by imperialist ideology during British colonization of India. As Indian culture is negated by the colonial power, Jemubhai adheres to English cultural identification and disavows his Indianness. The second mode of cultural identification revolves around the issue of cultural authenticity in the diasporic context for Biju, a young migrant, illegal worker in various restaurants in New York. To survive in a foreign country, Biju forces himself to transgress cultural borders, which disconcerts Biju and further prompts him to pursue cultural authenticity. The third mode highlights Sai’s and Gyan’s trajectories of cultural identification. Just as Sai, Jemubhai’s granddaughter, embodies the idea of in-betweenness, Gyan, Sai’s math tutor, manifests the desire to escape narrow nationalism. Both Sai and Gyan evoke the potential of crossing borders. Juxtaposing the three modes of cultural identification, Desai’s novel explores the process of negotiating cultural identity and gestures towards a field of border-crossing identity.
This study investigated X-raying the million-point agenda of Nigerian government by library and information professionals in the country. Six objectives were formulated to guide the study. A descriptive survey research design was adopted using the online Google Form to collect data/responses from the library and information science (LIS) professionals in Nigeria. The population of the study comprised LIS professionals in all the states in Nigeria. The sampling technique used for the study was the total enumeration sampling technique (120) as the whole responses were used for the analysis using tables, frequencies percentages, mean and standard deviation for easy appreciation and comprehension. Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) version 23 was also deployed and it was found out that there appears to be some high level of corrupt practices in the country, Nigeria, insecurity as of today remains on the high side which is not only worrisome but disturbingly a threat to too many households. Respondents have rated the economy to be at its lowest ebb as the majority of the citizens now wallow in poverty and agony, education standard is quite low in the country, there are deliberate steps to take in order to save Nigerian country from war and disintegration. To this very end, the well-informed class including library and information professionals should deliberately rise up to their duty by not just studying the current situation but also proffer recommendations and solutions to disturbing problems; hence recommendations are all Nigerians, irrespective of position or social, status must resolve to live a corrupt-free life; Government and all security agencies must be on the alert and, if possible, request international assistance; economic policies must be reviewed as a matter of urgency in Nigeria; education must be made easily accessible and funds made adequately available for educational institutions at all levels as prescribed by UNESCO; library and information professionals should continue to put government officials on their toes by regularly exposing their inadequacies to the citizens amongst others.
Philip Roth’s 2006 novel Everyman borrows its title from the famous fifteenth-century morality play The Summoning of Everyman. Yet, Roth establishes no clear or working connection between his novel and its medieval namesake. Roth scholars and critics have endeavored to identify intertextual continuities between these two works but with no tangible results. This article offers an alternative approach with which to view this problem by exploring the potential parodic nature of Roth’s text. More specifically, the paper theorizes that Roth fashioned a postmodernist brand of parody in his novel to negotiate the politics of representation of the issues of universality and determinism in the Medieval Everyman and the ideological discourses foregrounding their textual construction.
This contribution examines the magic-realist metaphor of the Matacão in Karen Tei Yamashita’s (1990) debut novel Through the Arc of the Rain Forest as a trope that invites us to imagine, reflect on, and explore plastic’s cross-cultural meanings, aesthetic experiences, and materialist implications. I contend that through the Matacão, Yamashita engenders a narrative about, as well as an aesthetic experience of, plastic that is inherently ambivalent and paradoxical. While it provides societies with material wealth and sensual pleasures, it poses at the same time a profound threat to life – human and nonhuman. The main part of the article is divided into two major sections: in the first part, I read Yamashita’s story about the Matacão as historiographic metafiction that parodies the socio-cultural history of plastic and its utopian promises and failures. In the second part, I draw on Catherine Malabou’s philosophical concept of plasticity to explore the Matacão’s material agency, as well as the social mobility and economic connectivity of Yamashita’s human protagonists in their plastic environments. The theoretical perspective of Malabou’s concept of plasticity shifts the focus to the agentic forces of the waste material and allows us to read Yamashita’s Matacão as both a site and material that, notwithstanding its devastating impacts, also holds potentialities for resilience and repair, and even the possibility for an, at least temporary, utopia.