Coded Realities

No. 1 - Year 4 - 12/2013

University of Zadar | ISSN 1847-7755 | SIC.JOURNAL.CONTACT@GMAIL.COM

Editorial

The seventh issue of [sic] was conceived as an open-themed issue, unrestricted by a specific topic, genre or mood. Yet, the papers that made it through the review process all seem to remind the readers that our reality is coded in so many ways. Whether it is by means of a literal code, such as the one used between the brothers Vrančić, one a cardinal and writer, the other a diplomat and poet, to prevent others from reading their letters, or a less conspicuous one, such as the one that transforms reality into reality TV, our literature, art and culture seem to rely heavily on cyphers, secrets and the tension between the real and the false. At times, in Grand-Guignol, the boundaries between viewing a play and witnessing a violent act become blurred as the viewer unintentionally becomes a witness or even the perpetrator of violent acts represented (faked!) on a stage in order to seem real. Questions of (in)authenticity and the construction of personal or cultural identity also contribute to our sense of our life, our very existence being coded intentionally and unintentionally in a myriad of ways. ...

Literature and Culture
Sanja Runtić and Jasna Poljak Rehlicki:

The paper analyzes the use of humor in the work of Luiseno artist James Luna. Utilizing the media of performance, photography and installation, using himself as the object of representation, Luna has created a recognizable artistic style that addresses the complex issues of American Indian identity and representation. His installations The End of the Frail (1990-91) and The Artifact Piece (1987, 1990) both point at the constructed nature of Native identity. Whereas the former employs satire, self-stereotyping, parody and humor to expose and confront the colonial myths, distorted attitudes and pictographic representations of Native Americans, the latter addresses the issues of Native absence and invisibility in the dominant culture. Representing himself as an artifact to provoke laughter, shock and discomfort, in The Artifact Piece Luna clearly disclosed the relationship between Western institutions of knowledge and the culture of the spectacle. Both installations draw attention to the ...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/1.4.lc.5
Literary Translation
Jon Gower and Andrea Rožić:

Na ovim je sjevernim zemljopisnim širinama temperatura od 17 stupnjeva ispod ništice bila pravo ljeto. To je najhladnije nastanjeno mjesto na zemlji. Pričalo se da se jedan starac na trenutak zaustavio jednog popodneva i krv mu se sledila u žilama. Stoga su Eveni, nomadski narod, s razlogom nastavljali svoj put, uostalom, samo su držali korak sa životinjama. Njihov bog Hovki stvorio je sve oko njih, iako su pojedinosti o tome kako je to činio pomalo nejasne. Ipak je to bilo jako davno, no oni znaju da pripadaju svemu ovome, svemu oko sebe i prirodi, kao da im je rođak. Njihova riječ za medvjeda ista je kao ona za djeda. I dovoljno dugo su tu da bi znali da starješine lete prema suncu na leđima sobova. Životinje su se teškim korakom kretale po mahovini, a njen je paperjasti prekrivač upijao svaki zvuk. Kroz nepregledni gustiš breza tanke zrake sunca, poput bambusovih stabljika, pokazivale su smjer, a tajga se činila kao da joj nema kraja. Goniči sobova zgrbili su se od hladnoće, a krhki...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/1.4.lt.4
Literature and Culture
Nataša Kampmark, University of Novi Sad, Serbia:

Taking (in)authenticity as his subject and intertextuality as the structuring principle, Peter Carey brings together Australian literary and social history, literary theory and a self-reflexive probe into the issues of identity, authenticity and cultural insecurity of a postcolonial society. The novel is interpreted as an allegorical account of national history and an allegorical narrative on the theoretical matters of originality and authorship.Keywords: Carey, identity, (in)authenticity, intertextuality, text, postcolonialism. The most well-known Australian author today, Peter Carey, has more than once found inspiration for his novels in already existing texts of British and Australian cultures. The most notable examples are his sixth novel titled Jack Maggs, his seventh novel titled True History of the Kelly Gang and the one explored in this paper, his eighth novel titled My Life as a Fake. Carey’s Jack Maggs (1997) retells the story of Dickens’ Great Expectations and in a postcolon...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/1.4.lc.4
Literary Translation
Hassan Blasim and Una Krizmanić Ožegović:

U Iraku se zvao Salim Abdul Husain i radio je za općinu kao čistač, u skupini kojoj je upravitelj dodijelio zadatak čišćenja nakon eksplozija. Umro je 2009. u Nizozemskoj pod drugim imenom: Carlos Fuentes. Salim i njegovi kolege, puni dosade i gnušanja, kao i svakoga drugog jadnog dana, čistili su tržnicu nakon što je eksplodirao tegljač s gorivom, zapalivši piliće, voće, povrće i pokojeg čovjeka. Meli su pažljivo i polako od straha da ne pokupe neki zaostali komad ljudskoga tijela. Uvijek su tražili netaknutu lisnicu ili možda zlatni lanac, prsten ili sat koji je još pokazivao vrijeme. U potrazi za posmrtnim dragocjenostima Salim nije imao sreće kao njegovi kolege. Trebao mu je novac za vizu kako bi otišao u Nizozemsku i pobjegao iz ovog vatrenoga užasa prepunoga smrti. Samo mu se jedanput posrećilo pa je našao prst s dragocjenim srebrnim prstenom, vrlo lijepim. Salim je poklopio prst stopalom, pažljivo se sagnuo i skinuo prsten s gađenjem. Prsten je završio na Salimovoj ruci, zadivlj...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/1.4.lt.1
Literature and Culture
Milenko Lončar and Diana Sorić:

During the period of their correspondance, the brothers Mihovil and Antun Vrančić would occasionaly write messages in code: Antun in a letter written while on a diplomatic mission in Paris in 1546, and Mihovil in four letters written in Šibenik some twelve years later. While conducting the necessary research required for our investigation, we discovered that one letter had, until now, remained unknown. We succeeded in deciphering Mihovil's system of signs by comparing the frequency of signs in the coded parts of the text with the frequency of signs in those parts of his letter composed in Latin script. The majority of the signs are derived from the Latin script and only their quality has beeen changed. It seems that this was influenced by the Polygraphia, a work by the then contemporary cryptographer Iohannes Trithemius. In addition, a certain number of Arabic signs as well as signs from other scripts have been included.Most of the hidden content deals with investments in real estate a...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/1.4.lc.1
Literature and Culture
Aaron Duplantier, Louisiana State University, USA:

In after show interviews, reality television stars often cite the camera and producorial manipulation, like editing, when trying to explain away their conceivably indefensible behavior. And much academic criticism of reality shows hinges on these very same “negative” features of the format: technological mediation, truthiness, their “lack” of reality. However, given the pervasiveness of 21st Century digital communication technology, and our decades worth of exposure to the regulating gaze of CCTV cameras, this rhetorical position is increasingly losing merit, despite its continued deployment—at the start of 2013, A&E’s Storage Wars was met by denouncements of a similar flavor. This paper attempts to draw on technology’s current place in the cultural milieu to challenge, at the very least, the theoretical position that might find reality TV external to our lived reality. Some specific reality TV personalities, ones who have denounced or commented on their on-screen selves, are examined ...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/1.4.lc.2