Between the Acts

Broj 1 - Godina 7 - 12/2016

Uvodnik

The papers collected within this entr'acte issue use different perspectives and standpoints to explore what happens between the acts – regardless of whether these are acts of a play, acts of speech or some other kind of social intercourse, or – broadly speaking – various acts/actions/activities that pertain to fictional worlds. It could arguably be expected that between the acts there is nothing of significance – utter silence and empty rows of seats in a theatre hall – or some form of light entertainment at best. These spatiotemporal lacunae, vacancies left gaping for however short a time, still possess the power, as all the papers in this issue seem to indicate, to construct and project new meanings of their own, or at the very least create potential for re-interpreting the adjacent ideas and contents, as well as exploring the problems of context, causality and sequence. ..

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Izdvojeno

Kuća je imala tri sobe, dva dnevna boravka, kupaonicu, blagovaonicu, kuhinju, sobu za sluškinju, podrum, terasu i dvorište.Što je za Eduarda značilo dvorište?Značilo je zemlju kojom je jurio orući štapom, iskopanu krhotinu stakla iz kojeg je izišao crv prepolovljen napola, ali koji se još micao, uvijek moguće postojanje kakva blaga, lokve blatnjave vode u vrijeme kiša, papirnati brodić, jednog mrava u njemu, liniju mrava koju je pratio da vidi kamo idu. Išli su u mravinjak. Manga sapatinho, manga manga-coracao-de-boi. Šećerna jabuka, goiaba, gabiroba. Kokošinjac. Bijela kokoš bila je njegova, bilo je jasno iz imena: „Eduarda!”Stisnula bi se i dopustila mu da je uzme u ruke. Katkad bi snijela jaje. Kada bi odlazio u školu, Eduardo bi je ostavljao ispod lavora. Jednom zgodom otac mu je rekao da to nije u redu: zar bi volio da netko to radi tebi? I kokoši pate. Jedne nedjelje za vrijeme ručka zatekao je Eduardu na stolu, s nogama u zraku, pečenu. Pojeo ju je kroz suze. Da, pate, no svi ih jedu i misle da je to u redu....

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Critics have widely explored John Fowles’ The French Lieutenant’s Woman, Graham Swift’s Waterland, and A. S. Byatt’s Possession. These novels are generally treated as outstanding historiographic metafictions since they self-consciously adopt the notion of history and simultaneously problematize historical understanding. For Hayden White, the historian is inevitably impositional and every narrativized history is relative. Following White, Linda Hutcheon defines postmodern historical fiction as the type of fiction that self-reflexively and paradoxically makes use of the notion of history and simultaneously denies its truthfulness. The present article attempts to analyze, compare, and contrast John Fowles’ The French Lieutenant’s Woman, Graham Swift’s Waterland and A. S. Byatt’s Possession: A Romance in light of the theories of White and Hutcheon to show that in spite of problematization of the possibility of recovering the past as it actually was, these novels treat the concept of history differently. ...

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This essay examines the long-standing and far-reaching influence of Oscar Wilde’s public persona – both historical and mythical – on author Beverley Nichols. Nichols, famous during his lifetime for both his non-fiction and reportage, has sustained his fame primarily through his Allways and Merry Hall gardening trilogies. These feature a semi-autobiographical version of the author who is self-styled as a spiritual successor who pays homage to, and extends the legacy of, Oscar Wilde and his endless bon mots, serving up irony, humor, and social commentary in an engaging, urbane manner while further shaping the Wildean identity that prevailed as an iconic gay style throughout much of the last century and that endures, in some forms, even today. Keywords: queer theory, Oscar Wilde, Beverley Nichols, Pet Shop Boys, queer identityOscar Wilde’s final words as his three harrowing trials and, indeed, his remarkably verbal life drew near their close – “And I? May I say nothing, my Lord?” – serve as a potent reminder of the many forces that conspired to silence the man, his work, and the desire he came to represent, for better or worse, to so many. Nearly a century after that utterance, his words continue to resonate, as a refrain, perhaps even a plaintive cry, for the Pet Shop Boys (PSB hereafter) and many others, suggesting that Wilde, as the long-reigning patron saint of queer men, still holds sway in matters of self-styling and queer identity formation based in nostalgia. From the spectacle of his downfall emerged a mythical Wilde – martyr, champion of queer desire, arbiter of style and wit – based in the biographical as much as the fanciful, who inspires Wilde nostalgia even today. Beverley Nichols, especially in his two mid-century “gardening” trilogies, pays homage to the cultural construct we call Oscar Wilde with his endless bon mots, serving up irony, humor, and social commentary in an engaging, urbane manner while further shaping the Wildean identity that prevailed as an iconic queer style throughout much of the last century and that enjoys nostalgic revivals by artists like PSB over a century later. ...

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Not just another dictionary in the well-known Rowman & Littlefield “Historical Dictionaries” series – South American Cinema is a special kind of book for anyone delving into the broad field of national and regional cinema encompassed by the term South American. Author Peter H. Rist is a professor at Concordia University in Montreal and his PhD thesis dealt with the early films of John Ford. Rist is better known within film circles as the author of several papers on experimental Japanese cinema, so his solo venture into South American cinema is quite unexpected. It is even more surprising that he has produced a 701 page book of this stature on his own – definitely a huge task.What is quite different about this book is evident right from the title – South American – not Latin American, Hispano-American, or any other expected paradigm based on the language or the hyper-cultural context. Rist, as he notes in the preface, tried to envision a book bordered by the notion of the whole continent of South America. This rather unusual approach (where almost all other titles on the subject focus on Latin or Hispanic) broadens the horizon with an exotic array that includes Surinamese, French Guianese, and Guyanese cinema. Rarely are these nations even noted in serious books, so entries with their names, brief as they are, make a difference. This is also discussion on the cinema of small Hispanic nations such as Ecuador and Paraguay. On another level, the South American context includes French, English and Dutch language cinema alongside prevailing Spanish and Portuguese, albeit the output of these films is negligible in comparison with the bigger and traditionally more important films of Brazil or Argentina. ...

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