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한국영어영문학회> 영어영문학> Resisting a “Culture of Dependence”: Sexual Agency and Empowerment in Chimamanda Adichie’s Americanah

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Resisting a “Culture of Dependence”: Sexual Agency and Empowerment in Chimamanda Adichie’s Americanah

Hakyoung Ahn
  • : 한국영어영문학회
  • : 영어영문학 68권1호
  • : 연속간행물
  • : 2022년 03월
  • : 3-22(20pages)
영어영문학

DOI


목차

Ⅰ. Introduction
Ⅱ. Sexual (Dis)empowerment in America
Ⅲ. “Bottom Power” and the Illusion of Sexual Empowerment in Nigeria
Ⅳ. Conclusion
Works Cited

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초록 보기

This article explores sexual empowerment in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s third novel Americanah (2013). Adichie’s novel connects violence against women and racism in America through the story of Nigerian protagonists Ifemelu and Obinze, and their love and growth throughout their separate departures to America and Britain. In particular, Ifemelu’s adjustment to America is informed by a newly developing awareness of racism, which is initiated by an experience of sexual assault and trauma. Adichie portrays this experience as an American capitalist variation of the systemic gender inequality that is already prevalent in Nigeria, which is portrayed as a “culture of dependence” among Nigerian women aggressively seeking material compensation from relationships with wealthy men, a system undergirded by wealth and power, to which women are subjected even as they seemingly benefit from romantic relationships. In a contemporary postfeminist society that assumes that structurally oppressive conditions against women have largely been removed, women are considered empowered in their sexuality, their sexual choices assumed to be freely chosen. In her novel, however, Adichie depicts the ways in which women’s individual sexual choices are shaped by structural circumstances that compel women’s sexual commodification in a male-based system. This article thus examines the ways in which Adichie exposes the precarity of women’s sexual agency within a system of gender inequality that spans the United States and Nigeria, demonstrating that individual choice is not always an indication of agency or power when it comes to female sexuality.

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  • : KCI등재
  • : SCOPUS
  • : 계간
  • : 1016-2283
  • : 2465-8545
  • : 학술지
  • : 연속간행물
  • : 1955-2022
  • : 2722


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1Resisting a “Culture of Dependence”: Sexual Agency and Empowerment in Chimamanda Adichie's Americanah

저자 : Hakyoung Ahn

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 3-22 (20 pages)

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This article explores sexual empowerment in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's third novel Americanah (2013). Adichie's novel connects violence against women and racism in America through the story of Nigerian protagonists Ifemelu and Obinze, and their love and growth throughout their separate departures to America and Britain. In particular, Ifemelu's adjustment to America is informed by a newly developing awareness of racism, which is initiated by an experience of sexual assault and trauma. Adichie portrays this experience as an American capitalist variation of the systemic gender inequality that is already prevalent in Nigeria, which is portrayed as a “culture of dependence” among Nigerian women aggressively seeking material compensation from relationships with wealthy men, a system undergirded by wealth and power, to which women are subjected even as they seemingly benefit from romantic relationships. In a contemporary postfeminist society that assumes that structurally oppressive conditions against women have largely been removed, women are considered empowered in their sexuality, their sexual choices assumed to be freely chosen. In her novel, however, Adichie depicts the ways in which women's individual sexual choices are shaped by structural circumstances that compel women's sexual commodification in a male-based system. This article thus examines the ways in which Adichie exposes the precarity of women's sexual agency within a system of gender inequality that spans the United States and Nigeria, demonstrating that individual choice is not always an indication of agency or power when it comes to female sexuality.

KCI등재 SCOPUS

2Popularizing Shakespeare's History Play in Korea: Reshaping Richard III as a Revenge Tragedy

저자 : Yehrim Han

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 23-43 (21 pages)

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This paper examines the most recent Korean adaptation of Shakespeare's Richard the Third, SEM Company's Richard III (2022), and analyzes its strategies to popularize Shakespeare's history play for Korean theater. I argue that R3(2022) reshapes Shakespeare's original history play into a revenge tragedy by using existing conventions of Korean Shakespeare adaptations as well as elements of film noir. I highlight R3(2022)'s two distinctive modifications of Shakespeare's text―portraying Margaret as a mysterious revenge ghost and staging Richard's bloody murder―which reconstruct the play as a double revenge play of Margaret and of Richard. First, R3(2022) reinterprets Margret as a revenge ghost, who plays the role of a chorus commenting on the course of the play, and as a representation of Richard's inner struggle in the nightmare scene. It uses pansori, the genre of Korean traditional vocal music, to give Margaret a distinctive voice. A second aspect of the adaptation revolves around Richard's failed revenge against the world. Accentuating Richard's vengeful villainy, this production adopts characteristic styles of film noir by staging Richard's excessive violence, on the one hand, and downplaying the subtle dynamics between female characters on the other. By casting the “100-million-viewer” movie star Jung-min Hwang, who is especially prominent in noir films, R3(2022) underlines the actor's physical strain to reenact Richard's crooked body as it intensifies his deformity in connection with his savagery.

KCI등재 SCOPUS

3Shakespeare and Prisoners in Confinement Facilities: Cases of Shakespearean Productions by Prisoners of War at Dartmoor and Political Prisoners on Robben Island

저자 : Younglim Han

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 45-68 (24 pages)

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This paper explores Shakespearean productions in prison facilities at Dartmoor in the United Kingdom and Robben Island in South Africa. The account of the relationship between Shakespeare and Dartmoor Prison is based on Simon Mayo's Mad Blood Stirring (2018). Mayo takes the book's title from Benvolio's words, and depicts the production of Romeo and Juliet staged by American prisoners of war captured in the War of 1812. The account of the relationship between Shakespeare and Robben Island Prison is based on Matthew Hahn's The Robben Island Shakespeare (2017). Hahn takes the book's title from the so-called Robben Island Shakespeare, a copy of the complete works of Shakespeare which was secretly passed around a group of political prisoners in the mid-1970s. Mayo's work and Hahn's illustrate cases of why Shakespeare is chosen to perform in these prisons, and how Shakespearean performance appeals to the prisoners.

KCI등재 SCOPUS

4Children's Rights, PTSD and Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap

저자 : Seunghyun Hwang , Yan Huang

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 69-86 (18 pages)

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Although one of Agatha Christie's most famous plays The Mousetrap has been loved and continually performed for close to three-quarters of a century, scholarly research on the play is limited. The lack of academic interest might be an inevitable devaluation of the play claiming sentimental popularity or the commercial orientation associated with the play. Despite these claims, Christie's social commentary and awareness of messages about social issues are tangible. Like an imperceptible mousetrap, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can trap the mind of a person who has experienced trauma. When Agatha Christie published her play The Mousetrap in 1952, PTSD was called shell-shock and primarily associated with invisible war trauma. Today PTSD is also associated with other traumas such as child abuse. The application of PTSD to childhood trauma emphasizes the need for children's rights legislation and competent mental health and social services for victims of childhood abuse symbolized in Christie's play as three blind mice. This article aims to provide an empathetic understanding of the abstract concepts of PTSD and child abuse and focuses on putting a 21st-century face on the 1950s play by approaching it as a commentary on failed social services by focusing on elements of child protection as provided by child welfare systems, legal systems, and school systems. It connects the effects of PTSD in childhood trauma to the play's plot and emphasizes the need for children's rights legislation and competent mental health and social services for victims of childhood abuse today.

KCI등재 SCOPUS

5Puppet Theater, Woman Actor, and Hieronimo's Playwriting in The Spanish Tragedy

저자 : Ja Young Jeon

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 87-116 (30 pages)

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This article focuses on Bel-Imperia's power of playing which matches or even replaces Hieronimo's authorial privilege in The Spanish Tragedy (c.1587). I first provide an overview of the early modern ideas about the mouth, suggesting that Kyd and his contemporaries turned to the mouth/tongue conceit for a model of the actor's trade. Ranging from antitheatrical tracts to a dramatist' letter to the Master of the Revels, the period's writings examined here figured the actor as the mouth passively repeating the author's writing. Puppet theater was an especially charged space, linking ventriloquized wooden objects not only to the passivity of actors, but also to their surprising counter-attack. I briefly explore Ben Jonson's Bartholmew Fair and its depiction of a farcical puppet show. In doing so, I suggest that the identification between the puppet and the living actor crucially shaped the puppet's attraction for playwrights exploring the actor's potential autonomy. In the second section, I trace The Spanish Tragedy's implicit allusions to puppetry elements. Recognizing its borrowings of the 'low' theatrical mode shows Kyd turning Bel-Imperia from a receptive puppet of Hieronimo's blood-seeking spectacle into a glamorous, and violently murderous, actor. She throws off the showman's intervention and becomes the possessor of the actor's tongue. Finally, the paper provides a re-reading of Hieronimo's climactic tongue-cutting in relation to Bel-Imperia's improvisation. Highlighting the importance of intra-company collaboration and the actor's representational power, I suggest that The Spanish Tragedy breaks with the author's exceptionalism and gestures towards an alternative way of conceiving dramatic authorship.

KCI등재 SCOPUS

6Tempo and Bodily Rhythm in Fritz Lang's Metropolis

저자 : Seul Lee

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 117-142 (26 pages)

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This paper examines Fritz Lang's Metropolis to demonstrate that the film's allegorical message that “the mediator between [the] head and [the] hands must be the heart” can be read as a mediation between multiple new temporalities introduced by modernity. Metropolis showcases a dystopic industrialized modern world in which the class division between the elite and the proletariat visually separates their dwelling areas. In the film, the city master's son Freder with the help of a saintly figure, Maria, tries to mediate such a vast division. In this vein, critics have studied the film relative to the capital/labor conflict and the anxieties provoked by technology. My reading of Metropolis, however, attunes our attention to the divided groups' differentially lived temporalities and rhythms in the fast-paced modern world. I view the relationship between the head and the hands as an allegory of tempos and propose that the film shows modern life's complex temporal structure and the modern subject's struggles to mediate the industrial age's preoccupation with speed and efficiency. Therefore, this research focuses on the paradoxically highlighted temporality of slowness, which is a fresh approach to the film, to ultimately argue that the representation of a slow tempo plays a role in highlighting agency in time that frees people from the speed-up time bind. The contribution of this research builds on and expands the discourse on cinematic time and rhythm in film criticism. Overall, this paper demonstrates how Metropolis underlines the inequality predicated on maintaining the dominant accelerated life that needs mediation in temporal disconnection.

KCI등재 SCOPUS

7Decoupling Memory from Desire: T.S. Eliot's Journey Towards Detachment

저자 : Alicia Ye Sul Oh

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 143-166 (24 pages)

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This paper pivots on T.S. Eliot's impersonality by focusing on the overarching religiosity in his later writings, or in the case of his earlier works, the lack thereof. Such claim is predicated on the paradox of a glaring absence, which is suggestive of intentional, or at least subconscious avoidance. Although the triad paradigm of attachment, indifference, and detachment is introduced much later in “Little Gidding,” the poet's immersion in religious philosophy dating back to his college days allows us to discover detachment as prefigurative of Eliot's formulation of poetic impersonality, thereby facilitating a more holistic reading of his oeuvre. To conceptualize attachment, indifference, and detachment, therefore, I borrow from the thirteenth-century German Dominican mystic Meister Eckhart whose works Eliot first became familiar with at Harvard. Opening with Eliot's early poems of attachment, I demonstrate how the poet often takes up heterosexual relationships to showcase the poetic consciousness as inextricably caught up in the secular, everyday world. Here, I mainly examine “La Figlia Che Piange.” Because the poem delineates an escape from genuine emotion and functions as an exposé of the male speaker's irresponsible, egotistic aesthetics, it performs indifference, which I next delve into. In this intermission on “Tradition and the Individual Talent” and The Waste Land, I carry out a quick analysis of indifference and Eliot's poetic impersonality, which attempts to disentangle it from the traps of human emotion and personality. My understanding of impersonality is as a precursor to detachment, a principle more closely and explicitly articulated in “Burnt Norton” and “Little Gidding.”

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8Tolkien and Form: Generic Discontinuities in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings

저자 : Robert T. Tally Jr.

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 167-192 (26 pages)

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With the success of The Hobbit, J. R. R. Tolkien has been tasked with writing a sequel, even though he would have preferred to publish The Silmarillion instead, a manuscript which was rejected by his publisher. He set out to write a work, “in a similar style and for a similar audience,” but whatever generic characteristics those various books by Tolkien shared―today, all three might be easily subsumed under the popular marketing label of fantasy―The Silmarillion (not to mention the far more heterogenous and inconsistent “Silmarillion” texts), The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings clearly represent rather different kinds of literary works. Tolkien later attempted to reconstruct these three texts as part of a single, unified story, the “Saga of the Jewels and the Rings,” but in attempting to give shape to this story, he had to experiment with multiple narrative forms. Ultimately, the project is marked by what Fredric Jameson has called “generic discontinuities,” as Tolkien's writings integrate aspects of the epic, romance, the historical novel, and other genres in order to build his vast world-system. In this essay, I discuss these generic discontinuities in the context of his larger aim to realize and make meaningful History (as examined previously in “'Don't the Great Tales Never End': Tolkien, History, and the Desire Called Marx”). I argue that Tolkien's writings deploy genre strategically in ways that perhaps even Tolkien may not have intended, making for a richer, multiformal, and multilayered literary map of Middle-earth.

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9The Foreignness of Language and Literary Translation―A Retrospective Essay on Reaching the Age of 80

저자 : Seon-jae An

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 193-209 (17 pages)

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This essay revisits a few of the main ideas which the author has formulated regarding the translation of Korean poetry during the more than thirty years in which he has been active as a translator. In an article published in 1996, he stressed the difference existing between any Korean poem and its English translations, due not only to the differences between the two languages but above all to the need to produce a translation which has maximal poetic quality in English. He stressed the tension existing between “accuracy” and “readability” and the need to prioritize the latter over the former. He ends by echoing Walter Benjamin and Paul Ricoeur on the impossibility of a “perfect” translation. In a second part, he summarizes the ideas he developed in an unpublished 2016 lecture, illustrated by examples from translations of a poet such as Kim Soo-Bok. Here he also stressed the difference between the freedom enjoyed by a translator, who is always obliged to refer to the original poem, and the poet who freely creates the original poem without reference to anything previously existing. He then contrasts his own position with the extremely literal translations demanded by Brodsky and Nabokov. After briefly surveying the challenges presented by a number of the poets he has translated, some of whose works seem to defy translation completely, he concludes with a longer review of his recent work on poems by Sin Yong-mok, to illustrate his attempts to transform fine Korean poetry into English poetry that will be effective in its new world, while remaining faithful to its original.

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1Resisting a “Culture of Dependence”: Sexual Agency and Empowerment in Chimamanda Adichie's Americanah

저자 : Hakyoung Ahn

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 3-22 (20 pages)

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This article explores sexual empowerment in Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's third novel Americanah (2013). Adichie's novel connects violence against women and racism in America through the story of Nigerian protagonists Ifemelu and Obinze, and their love and growth throughout their separate departures to America and Britain. In particular, Ifemelu's adjustment to America is informed by a newly developing awareness of racism, which is initiated by an experience of sexual assault and trauma. Adichie portrays this experience as an American capitalist variation of the systemic gender inequality that is already prevalent in Nigeria, which is portrayed as a “culture of dependence” among Nigerian women aggressively seeking material compensation from relationships with wealthy men, a system undergirded by wealth and power, to which women are subjected even as they seemingly benefit from romantic relationships. In a contemporary postfeminist society that assumes that structurally oppressive conditions against women have largely been removed, women are considered empowered in their sexuality, their sexual choices assumed to be freely chosen. In her novel, however, Adichie depicts the ways in which women's individual sexual choices are shaped by structural circumstances that compel women's sexual commodification in a male-based system. This article thus examines the ways in which Adichie exposes the precarity of women's sexual agency within a system of gender inequality that spans the United States and Nigeria, demonstrating that individual choice is not always an indication of agency or power when it comes to female sexuality.

KCI등재SCOUPUS

2Popularizing Shakespeare's History Play in Korea: Reshaping Richard III as a Revenge Tragedy

저자 : Yehrim Han

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 23-43 (21 pages)

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This paper examines the most recent Korean adaptation of Shakespeare's Richard the Third, SEM Company's Richard III (2022), and analyzes its strategies to popularize Shakespeare's history play for Korean theater. I argue that R3(2022) reshapes Shakespeare's original history play into a revenge tragedy by using existing conventions of Korean Shakespeare adaptations as well as elements of film noir. I highlight R3(2022)'s two distinctive modifications of Shakespeare's text―portraying Margaret as a mysterious revenge ghost and staging Richard's bloody murder―which reconstruct the play as a double revenge play of Margaret and of Richard. First, R3(2022) reinterprets Margret as a revenge ghost, who plays the role of a chorus commenting on the course of the play, and as a representation of Richard's inner struggle in the nightmare scene. It uses pansori, the genre of Korean traditional vocal music, to give Margaret a distinctive voice. A second aspect of the adaptation revolves around Richard's failed revenge against the world. Accentuating Richard's vengeful villainy, this production adopts characteristic styles of film noir by staging Richard's excessive violence, on the one hand, and downplaying the subtle dynamics between female characters on the other. By casting the “100-million-viewer” movie star Jung-min Hwang, who is especially prominent in noir films, R3(2022) underlines the actor's physical strain to reenact Richard's crooked body as it intensifies his deformity in connection with his savagery.

KCI등재SCOUPUS

3Shakespeare and Prisoners in Confinement Facilities: Cases of Shakespearean Productions by Prisoners of War at Dartmoor and Political Prisoners on Robben Island

저자 : Younglim Han

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 45-68 (24 pages)

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This paper explores Shakespearean productions in prison facilities at Dartmoor in the United Kingdom and Robben Island in South Africa. The account of the relationship between Shakespeare and Dartmoor Prison is based on Simon Mayo's Mad Blood Stirring (2018). Mayo takes the book's title from Benvolio's words, and depicts the production of Romeo and Juliet staged by American prisoners of war captured in the War of 1812. The account of the relationship between Shakespeare and Robben Island Prison is based on Matthew Hahn's The Robben Island Shakespeare (2017). Hahn takes the book's title from the so-called Robben Island Shakespeare, a copy of the complete works of Shakespeare which was secretly passed around a group of political prisoners in the mid-1970s. Mayo's work and Hahn's illustrate cases of why Shakespeare is chosen to perform in these prisons, and how Shakespearean performance appeals to the prisoners.

KCI등재SCOUPUS

4Children's Rights, PTSD and Agatha Christie's The Mousetrap

저자 : Seunghyun Hwang , Yan Huang

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 69-86 (18 pages)

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Although one of Agatha Christie's most famous plays The Mousetrap has been loved and continually performed for close to three-quarters of a century, scholarly research on the play is limited. The lack of academic interest might be an inevitable devaluation of the play claiming sentimental popularity or the commercial orientation associated with the play. Despite these claims, Christie's social commentary and awareness of messages about social issues are tangible. Like an imperceptible mousetrap, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can trap the mind of a person who has experienced trauma. When Agatha Christie published her play The Mousetrap in 1952, PTSD was called shell-shock and primarily associated with invisible war trauma. Today PTSD is also associated with other traumas such as child abuse. The application of PTSD to childhood trauma emphasizes the need for children's rights legislation and competent mental health and social services for victims of childhood abuse symbolized in Christie's play as three blind mice. This article aims to provide an empathetic understanding of the abstract concepts of PTSD and child abuse and focuses on putting a 21st-century face on the 1950s play by approaching it as a commentary on failed social services by focusing on elements of child protection as provided by child welfare systems, legal systems, and school systems. It connects the effects of PTSD in childhood trauma to the play's plot and emphasizes the need for children's rights legislation and competent mental health and social services for victims of childhood abuse today.

KCI등재SCOUPUS

5Puppet Theater, Woman Actor, and Hieronimo's Playwriting in The Spanish Tragedy

저자 : Ja Young Jeon

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 87-116 (30 pages)

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This article focuses on Bel-Imperia's power of playing which matches or even replaces Hieronimo's authorial privilege in The Spanish Tragedy (c.1587). I first provide an overview of the early modern ideas about the mouth, suggesting that Kyd and his contemporaries turned to the mouth/tongue conceit for a model of the actor's trade. Ranging from antitheatrical tracts to a dramatist' letter to the Master of the Revels, the period's writings examined here figured the actor as the mouth passively repeating the author's writing. Puppet theater was an especially charged space, linking ventriloquized wooden objects not only to the passivity of actors, but also to their surprising counter-attack. I briefly explore Ben Jonson's Bartholmew Fair and its depiction of a farcical puppet show. In doing so, I suggest that the identification between the puppet and the living actor crucially shaped the puppet's attraction for playwrights exploring the actor's potential autonomy. In the second section, I trace The Spanish Tragedy's implicit allusions to puppetry elements. Recognizing its borrowings of the 'low' theatrical mode shows Kyd turning Bel-Imperia from a receptive puppet of Hieronimo's blood-seeking spectacle into a glamorous, and violently murderous, actor. She throws off the showman's intervention and becomes the possessor of the actor's tongue. Finally, the paper provides a re-reading of Hieronimo's climactic tongue-cutting in relation to Bel-Imperia's improvisation. Highlighting the importance of intra-company collaboration and the actor's representational power, I suggest that The Spanish Tragedy breaks with the author's exceptionalism and gestures towards an alternative way of conceiving dramatic authorship.

KCI등재SCOUPUS

6Tempo and Bodily Rhythm in Fritz Lang's Metropolis

저자 : Seul Lee

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 117-142 (26 pages)

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This paper examines Fritz Lang's Metropolis to demonstrate that the film's allegorical message that “the mediator between [the] head and [the] hands must be the heart” can be read as a mediation between multiple new temporalities introduced by modernity. Metropolis showcases a dystopic industrialized modern world in which the class division between the elite and the proletariat visually separates their dwelling areas. In the film, the city master's son Freder with the help of a saintly figure, Maria, tries to mediate such a vast division. In this vein, critics have studied the film relative to the capital/labor conflict and the anxieties provoked by technology. My reading of Metropolis, however, attunes our attention to the divided groups' differentially lived temporalities and rhythms in the fast-paced modern world. I view the relationship between the head and the hands as an allegory of tempos and propose that the film shows modern life's complex temporal structure and the modern subject's struggles to mediate the industrial age's preoccupation with speed and efficiency. Therefore, this research focuses on the paradoxically highlighted temporality of slowness, which is a fresh approach to the film, to ultimately argue that the representation of a slow tempo plays a role in highlighting agency in time that frees people from the speed-up time bind. The contribution of this research builds on and expands the discourse on cinematic time and rhythm in film criticism. Overall, this paper demonstrates how Metropolis underlines the inequality predicated on maintaining the dominant accelerated life that needs mediation in temporal disconnection.

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7Decoupling Memory from Desire: T.S. Eliot's Journey Towards Detachment

저자 : Alicia Ye Sul Oh

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 143-166 (24 pages)

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This paper pivots on T.S. Eliot's impersonality by focusing on the overarching religiosity in his later writings, or in the case of his earlier works, the lack thereof. Such claim is predicated on the paradox of a glaring absence, which is suggestive of intentional, or at least subconscious avoidance. Although the triad paradigm of attachment, indifference, and detachment is introduced much later in “Little Gidding,” the poet's immersion in religious philosophy dating back to his college days allows us to discover detachment as prefigurative of Eliot's formulation of poetic impersonality, thereby facilitating a more holistic reading of his oeuvre. To conceptualize attachment, indifference, and detachment, therefore, I borrow from the thirteenth-century German Dominican mystic Meister Eckhart whose works Eliot first became familiar with at Harvard. Opening with Eliot's early poems of attachment, I demonstrate how the poet often takes up heterosexual relationships to showcase the poetic consciousness as inextricably caught up in the secular, everyday world. Here, I mainly examine “La Figlia Che Piange.” Because the poem delineates an escape from genuine emotion and functions as an exposé of the male speaker's irresponsible, egotistic aesthetics, it performs indifference, which I next delve into. In this intermission on “Tradition and the Individual Talent” and The Waste Land, I carry out a quick analysis of indifference and Eliot's poetic impersonality, which attempts to disentangle it from the traps of human emotion and personality. My understanding of impersonality is as a precursor to detachment, a principle more closely and explicitly articulated in “Burnt Norton” and “Little Gidding.”

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8Tolkien and Form: Generic Discontinuities in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings

저자 : Robert T. Tally Jr.

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 167-192 (26 pages)

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With the success of The Hobbit, J. R. R. Tolkien has been tasked with writing a sequel, even though he would have preferred to publish The Silmarillion instead, a manuscript which was rejected by his publisher. He set out to write a work, “in a similar style and for a similar audience,” but whatever generic characteristics those various books by Tolkien shared―today, all three might be easily subsumed under the popular marketing label of fantasy―The Silmarillion (not to mention the far more heterogenous and inconsistent “Silmarillion” texts), The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings clearly represent rather different kinds of literary works. Tolkien later attempted to reconstruct these three texts as part of a single, unified story, the “Saga of the Jewels and the Rings,” but in attempting to give shape to this story, he had to experiment with multiple narrative forms. Ultimately, the project is marked by what Fredric Jameson has called “generic discontinuities,” as Tolkien's writings integrate aspects of the epic, romance, the historical novel, and other genres in order to build his vast world-system. In this essay, I discuss these generic discontinuities in the context of his larger aim to realize and make meaningful History (as examined previously in “'Don't the Great Tales Never End': Tolkien, History, and the Desire Called Marx”). I argue that Tolkien's writings deploy genre strategically in ways that perhaps even Tolkien may not have intended, making for a richer, multiformal, and multilayered literary map of Middle-earth.

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9The Foreignness of Language and Literary Translation―A Retrospective Essay on Reaching the Age of 80

저자 : Seon-jae An

발행기관 : 한국영어영문학회 간행물 : 영어영문학 68권 1호 발행 연도 : 2022 페이지 : pp. 193-209 (17 pages)

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This essay revisits a few of the main ideas which the author has formulated regarding the translation of Korean poetry during the more than thirty years in which he has been active as a translator. In an article published in 1996, he stressed the difference existing between any Korean poem and its English translations, due not only to the differences between the two languages but above all to the need to produce a translation which has maximal poetic quality in English. He stressed the tension existing between “accuracy” and “readability” and the need to prioritize the latter over the former. He ends by echoing Walter Benjamin and Paul Ricoeur on the impossibility of a “perfect” translation. In a second part, he summarizes the ideas he developed in an unpublished 2016 lecture, illustrated by examples from translations of a poet such as Kim Soo-Bok. Here he also stressed the difference between the freedom enjoyed by a translator, who is always obliged to refer to the original poem, and the poet who freely creates the original poem without reference to anything previously existing. He then contrasts his own position with the extremely literal translations demanded by Brodsky and Nabokov. After briefly surveying the challenges presented by a number of the poets he has translated, some of whose works seem to defy translation completely, he concludes with a longer review of his recent work on poems by Sin Yong-mok, to illustrate his attempts to transform fine Korean poetry into English poetry that will be effective in its new world, while remaining faithful to its original.

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