Matching Items (20)

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Desire and Fascism: The Rise of 21st-Century Nazism in the United States

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In August of 2017, the Unite the Right rally surged through Charlottesville, VA, turning violent and ending in the injury 30 people. Who participates in alt-right movements, and what were

In August of 2017, the Unite the Right rally surged through Charlottesville, VA, turning violent and ending in the injury 30 people. Who participates in alt-right movements, and what were the conditions of its possibility? Why is white supremacist ideology resurfacing now, and what makes contemporary white supremacy so pervasive and so dangerous? In this thesis, I forward a Lacanian psychoanalysis of the alt-right, beginning with Donald Trump, and then exploring the movement as a whole, in its relationship to the affect of belonging, the Master-Signifier of whiteness, and masculinity/sexuality as a whole. I conclude with a consideration of potential responses to alt-right violence.

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  • 2018-05

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THE HINDU HOLY COW AND THE AMERICAN ANIMAL: A CRITICAL COMPARISON OF HUMAN-ANIMAL RELATIONSHIP

Description

Painting two grand stories, I set out to compare human-animal relationships, as realized by the Holy Cow among Hindus in India and stock and pet animals among people in America.

Painting two grand stories, I set out to compare human-animal relationships, as realized by the Holy Cow among Hindus in India and stock and pet animals among people in America. The goal of these comparisons is to determine in what ways the relationships that Indians and Americans have towards animals can be made relevant to one another. This is done by concentrating on how the human perceptions of animals are informed by religious, political, and economic contexts, as well as how these perceptions inform the social costs of human-animal relationships within a society, as it pertains to both animals and humans. What I find is that the human-animal relationships are different in India and in America, but reveal similar tensions in both countries. In India, the Hindu Holy Cow is deified above the status of human, yet its embodiment of the Hindu cosmos and Hindu nationalist identity does not come without a cost for India as a society and nation. The American human-animal relationship is also caught in tension between two big perspectives. One, which is best exemplified by the stock cow, takes animals to be things of consumption, the other, which is best exemplified by the pet, makes animals into objects of anthropomorphism. Ultimately, the distinguished perspectives in India and America reveal divergent mechanisms, but comparable costs for humans and animals in both societies.

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  • 2020-05

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Exciting the sublime: terror, interiority, and the power of Shelley in The Cenci

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The most horrific, darkest, and powerful forms of the sublime take place inside the enclosure of the human psyche; the interior of the mind is the playground for the sublime--not

The most horrific, darkest, and powerful forms of the sublime take place inside the enclosure of the human psyche; the interior of the mind is the playground for the sublime--not the crag and canyon filled natural world. For Immanuel Kant and Edmund Burke, the driving force of the power of the sublime stems from the feelings of pain and fear: where is that more manifested than in the mind? Unlike the common, traditional, and overwhelmed discussion of Percy Shelley and his contemporaries and the power of the sublime in nature, I will argue that in The Cenci, Shelley, through well-chosen diction and precise composition of terrifying images, fashions characters and scenes in an emotion-driven play that elevates the mind of the reader to a transcendent sublime experience. Through a discussion of the theories of the aesthetic of the sublime laid out by Longinus, Burke, and Kant, I will provide a foundation for the later discussion of the rhetorical sublime evoked by Shelley in the ardent and horrifying play that is The Cenci. Looking at the conventional application of the theories of the sublime to romantic writing will make evident the holes in the discussion of the sublime and romantic writings that have almost forgotten the powerful and psychological rhetorical aspect of the sublime that is emphasized in the theoretical writings of both Burke and Kant. To clarify what is traditionally associated with Shelley and the sublime, a brief analysis of the Shelleyean sublime and Shelley's 1816 poem "Mont Blanc" will prepare the reader for an unconventional, but every bit important and powerful, function of the sublime in the 1819 play The Cenci based on the horrific happenings of a historical 16th century Italian noble family.

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  • 2011

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Drink of me, and you shall have eternal life: an analysis of Lord Byron's The Giaour and the Greek folkloric vampire

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This paper contains an examination of the impact of the Vampire Hysteria in Europe during the 1700’s on Lord Byron's “The Giaour.” Byron traveled to the continent in 1809

This paper contains an examination of the impact of the Vampire Hysteria in Europe during the 1700’s on Lord Byron's “The Giaour.” Byron traveled to the continent in 1809 and wrote the poems that came to be known as his Oriental Romances after overhearing what would become “The Giaour ” in “ one of the many coffee-houses that abound in the Levant.” The main character, the Giaour, has characteristics typical of the Greek vampire, called vrykolakas. The vamping of characters, the cyclic imagery, and the juxtaposition of life and death as it is expressed within the poem are analyzed in comparison to vampiric folklore, especially that of Greece.

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  • 2010

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William Blake and systems theory: the attempted unification of history and psychology

Description

William Blake created a large body of artistic work over his lifetime, all of which is a testament to a unique man, a man who would not live by standards

William Blake created a large body of artistic work over his lifetime, all of which is a testament to a unique man, a man who would not live by standards that he felt were binding and inadequate. Blake stated that he needed to create his own system so as not to be enslaved by a paradigm not of his own making. The result of this drive can be seen in his mythology and the meaning that he attempts to inscribe upon his own world. Throughout the corpus of his writings, Blake was working with complex systems. Beginning with contraries in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell and The Songs of Innocence & Experience, he then took his work in the contraries and applied it to history and psychology in Europe a Prophecy and The First Book of Urizen. In Blake's use of history and psychology, he was actually broaching the idea of social systems and how they interact with and effect psychic systems. This paper looks at the genesis of Blake's systems through the contraries, up to the point where he attempts to bring social and psychological systems together into a universal system. He uses projection and introjection to try to close the gap in double contingency. However, grappling with this problem (as well as the issue of a universal system) proves to be too much when he reaches The Four Zoas. In his later works, some of these issues are resolved, but ultimately Blake is not able create a universal system.

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  • 2012

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Norse romanticism: subversive female voices in British invocations of Nordic yore

Description

The mid-eighteenth century publication of national British folk collections like James MacPherson's Works of Ossian and Thomas Percy's Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, placed a newfound interest in the ancient

The mid-eighteenth century publication of national British folk collections like James MacPherson's Works of Ossian and Thomas Percy's Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, placed a newfound interest in the ancient literature associated with Northern/Gothic heritage. This shift from the classical past created a non-classical interest in the barbarism of Old Norse society, which appeared to closely resemble the Anglo-Saxons. In addition to this growing interest, Edmund Burke's seminal treatise, A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful, provided a newfound aesthetic interest in objects of terror. The barbaric obscurity and exoticism associated with the Norse culture provided the perfect figures to explore a Gothic heritage while invoking the terror of the sublime. This interest accounted for a variety of works published with Gothic themes and elements that included Old Norse pagan figures. Though a few scholars have attempted to shed light on this sub-field of Romanticism, it continues to lack critical attention, which inhibits a more holistic understanding of Romanticism. I argue that "Norse Romanticism" is a legitimate sub-field of Romanticism, made apparent by the number of primary works available from the age, and I synthesize the major works done thus far in creating a foundation for this field. I also argue that one of the tenets of Norse Romanticism is the newfound appreciation of the "Norse Woman" as a democratized figure, thus opening up a subversive space for dialogue in women's writing using the Gothic aesthetic. To illustrate this, I provide analysis of three Gothic poems written by women writers: Anna Seward's "Herva at the Tomb of Argantyr," Anne Bannerman's "The Nun," and Ann Radcliffe's "Salisbury Plains. Stonehenge." In addition, I supplement Robert Miles' theoretical reading of the Gothic with three philosophical essays on the empowerment of the imagination through terror writing in Anna Letitia Aikin (Barbauld) and John Aikin's "On the Pleasure Derived from Objects of Terror" and "On Romances" as well as Ann Radcliffe's "On the Supernatural in Poetry."

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  • 2013

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The dirty joke of cyberpunk or the humanism of posthumanism in the cyberpunk tradition: epigenetic memory and technology in Gibson's Neuromancer and Stephenson's Snow crash

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What does it mean to be human or for that matter, posthuman, according to a cyberpunk? This paper navigates the experience of being human in the dystopian and highly technologized

What does it mean to be human or for that matter, posthuman, according to a cyberpunk? This paper navigates the experience of being human in the dystopian and highly technologized future worlds found within the cyberpunk literary tradition of the 1980s and early 1990s. This work explores the implication of what it means to be posthuman in these worlds, which are comprised of virtual realities and disembodied identities. This project first addresses posthumanism as a critical theory and its destabilization of the traditional concept of humanism with particular attention to the relationship between the human being and technology. After building a theoretical framework of posthumanism based on works by Martin Heidegger, Jacques Derrida, and Bernard Stiegler, this paper then offers a survey of the cyberpunk tradition and the key themes developed and examined within the genre. The project then investigates two seminal works of the cyberpunk movement, William Gibson's 1984 novel, Neuromancer, and Neal Stephenson's 1992 work, Snow Crash, in order to trace a becoming posthuman as it is found within cyberpunk. As this paper further explains, the process of uncovering the posthuman within these texts produces a sense of loss and also nostalgia for a previous experience of being human which was already posthuman. The cyberpunk tradition and these novels in particular, reveal that there has always already been a degree of indeterminacy surrounding the question of what it means to be human. Through destabilizing traditionally held conceptions of humanism, cyberpunk and posthumanism offer the potential to rethink ourselves and our comportment towards the world knowing that technology always already informs our experience of being human.

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  • 2013

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The usefulness of waste: filth and waste in Charles Dickens' Our mutual friend and George Gissing's The nether world

Description

Victorian London was often confronted with the filth and waste that was the result of urban civilization. The Victorians saw themselves as a race of humanity above the savage tribes.

Victorian London was often confronted with the filth and waste that was the result of urban civilization. The Victorians saw themselves as a race of humanity above the savage tribes. While steps were taken to repress these natural and instinctual products of humanity, human waste and filth were powerfully incorporated in the fictional writings of Charles Dickens and George Gissing. I argue that this incorporation of filth and waste in both OUR MUTUAL FRIEND and THE NETHER WORLD serves as a metaphorical statement on the living conditions of the Victorian lower class. Using the urban travelogues of Dickens and Gissing's contemporaries, along with the analysis on waste and filth done by Sigmund Freud and Julia Kristeva, I argue that the interpretation of waste by Dickens and Gissing define a permeable boundary between London's residuum and the rest of urban society. Oftentimes, the definition of waste and filth become entangled with the definition of value and money. While Dickens chooses to focus on an optimistic outcome of the use value of waste; Gissing sees no hopeful future for the inhabitants of London's slums. I argue that Dickens, throughout his novel, showcases a modernistic use value for the waste of civilization through the recyclable qualities of waste. Gissing, in opposition to Dickens' optimism, sees a more fatalistic future for civilization. Both novels are able to provide a blueprint for the future of urban society, by establishing that filth and waste is a unifying element of civilization, and by establishing the important role that filth can play within the value system of Victorian London.

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  • 2012

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Our Shared Storm: Exploring Five Scenarios of Climate Fiction Futures

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This project uses the tools of speculative climate fiction to explore and imagine the future of the United Nations climate negotiations in each of the five Shared Socioeconomic Pathway (SSP)

This project uses the tools of speculative climate fiction to explore and imagine the future of the United Nations climate negotiations in each of the five Shared Socioeconomic Pathway (SSP) scenarios. Climate fiction (cli-fi) proves a powerful but imperfect tool for envisioning future challenging and turning scientific models into meaningful narratives.

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Date Created
  • 2020