On Violence

No. 2 - Year 4 - 06/2014

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

Editorial

The eighth issue of [sic] – a Journal of Literature, Culture and Literary Translation is upon us, offering once again a myriad of texts, analyses, approaches and thoughts, all “hiding” behind a name borrowed from the Re-Thinking Humanities and Social Sciences conference. The conference was titled “On Violence”, and it presented a plethora of trans-disciplinary discursive multiverses, all focusing on the issue, the appeal and/or the abhorrence of violence. The current issue of our journal strongly reflects this ambivalent appeal as it tries to bring forth some of the issues problematized during the conference. ...

Symposium of the Croatian Association for American Studies
Stipe Grgas, University of Zagreb, Croatia:

The departure point of this article is that however one conceives the practice of American Studies one has to recognize that it is a disciplinary practice. In accordance with this contention the author proceeds to discuss the notion of the discipline as such before he goes on to ask and answer the question: “How do American Studies constitute themselves?” The author argues that American Studies, like other disciplines, constituted itself by objectifying an exceptional polity. The crux of his argument is that this self-constitution was founded on an act of erasure, whereby the evidence of capitalism was elided from the research agenda of the discipline. Contending that this erasure is paradoxical considering that American Studies has as its object the exemplary capitalist nation, the author proceeds to delineate the reasons for this erasure. He goes on to contend that American Studies was complicit with the capitalist system of production and that one can speak of it as being a part of ...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.4.huams.3
Literature and Culture
Jovanka Kalaba, University of Belgrade, Serbia:

In the last years, Serbia has witnessed coming into being of various media forms that all provide social, political and cultural criticism through acrid comedy, parody and satire. The paper centers on sarcasm as one of the key aggressive rhetorical devices used in the language of popular satirical portal Njuz.net, with an overview of the structural and functional characteristics of sarcasm in contemporary communication. The paper explores how language aggressiveness manages to create an affirmative context in which the domineering structures of the official discourse are undermined by marginalized alternative discourses, as well as how such content, disseminated mainly through social networks and blogs and charged with verbal aggression and intertextual allusiveness stemming from deeper political, historical and social issues, succeeds in providing a narrative of kinship among those who often see it as the last recourse to sanity.Keywords: sarcasm, violence, language, popular culture, ...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.4.lc.3
Literature and Culture
Dunja Opatić, University of Zagreb, Croatia:

This paper unveils the revolutionary potential incarnated in the post-9/11 transformed figure of the cinematic zombie. It is my contention that zombies, through their cinematic (r)evolution, came to embody Deleuze and Guattari’s vision of the nomad war machine. Zombie films are used as a vehicle for addressing the tension between the hegemonic fear of the violent multitude in revolt and the counter-hegemonic liberatory potential of the rising masses. It is impossible to achieve a final resolution between these contradicting tendencies since the narrative structure of zombie films remains open-ended. The characteristics of the zombies and the meaning ascribed to them transform over time but they also maintain a continuity with a difference with the previous expressions of the monstrous. The monstrous characteristics which have pertained since George A. Romero’s paradigm shift in the 1960s (the zombifying contagion, violence and swarm attacks), joined with the new features appearing in t...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.4.lc.2
Symposium of the Croatian Association for American Studies
Sven Cvek, University of Zagreb, Croatia:

In this essay, I argue that the pedagogical, or, more generally, heuristic potential of HBO’s crime drama The Wire (2002/2008) is related to the specific institutional developments in post-network television, the show’s didactic intention, and its focus on the delineation of the economic process, or what has been called its “openly class-based” politics. I will dedicate most time to the latter, as it represents a particularly welcome intervention for American Studies, a discipline in which the problem of class has usually been either marginalized, or articulated in terms of the historically hegemonic disciplinary paradigm, that of identityKeywords: The Wire, American studies, cognitive mapping, capitalism, TV, HBOIn this essay, I would like to approach HBO’s crime drama The Wire (2002-2008) based on my experience of teaching the show in an American Studies class in Croatia. The course in which I try to work with it, Cultural Aspects of American Neoliberalism, deals with the gradual dep...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.4.huams.4
Symposium of the Croatian Association for American Studies
Jelena Šesnić and Sanja Runtić:

The texts before you were, in their shorter version, originally presented at the inaugural symposium of the Croatian Association for American Studies (Hrvatsko udruženje za američke studije), established in 2010 with the aim of bringing together researchers and academics in Croatian institutions of higher education that teach, research and are working towards their degrees in different fields comprising American Studies. The first and hopefully not the last symposium showcased a considerable number of Croatian Americanists, while hosting also a few guests from abroad, among them one of the keynote speakers, Professor Douglas Ambrose of Hamilton College, USA. The other plenary address was delivered by Professor Stipe Grgas of the University of Zagreb whose work has been a mainstay of American Studies in Croatia and beyond. While Ambrose, as a historian of the early America and the antebellum society, revisits the importance of religion for the fateful conflict between the North and the ...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.4.huams.1
Literature and Culture
Stefanie Heine, University of Zürich, Switzerland:

In “The Order,” Matthew Barney transforms the Guggenheim Museum into a space reminding of a computer game or sports-arena. The protagonist struggles his way through different ‘levels’ and at the heart of the setting, he is confronted with the para-athlete Aimee Mullins, a cyborg embodying the Deleuzian notion of the ani/omalous. To complete his final task, the protagonist kills the creature. The question arises, why the ani/omalous has to be violently eliminated. In this respect, it is important to know that the DVD offers two viewing options: a film version structured according to a fixed narrative order and an interactive version where one can switch between the levels simultaneously. Thus, Barney’s film also raises the question of the aesthetic order at work and invites to consider how what is shown relates to the way in which it is shown.Keywords: Matthew Barney, becoming ani/omalous, Deleuze & Guattari, violence in artMatthew Barney’s hybrid monumental aesthetic work the Cremaster...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.4.lc.1