3 Chapters
Medium 9781574415933

Paratexts and the Rhetorical Factor in Literature

Edited by Thomas Austenfeld UNT Press ePub

Paratexts and the Rhetorical Factor in Literature

Joachim Knape

As a rhetorician, I did not take Thomas Austenfeld’s invitation to compare Sebastian Brant's Narrenschiff (1494) and Katherine Anne Porter’s Ship of Fools (1962) for granted. When working within a strictly defined theoretical framework of rhetoric, it is not obvious that rhetorical analysis is appropriate for the fields of art and literature. If it is, then such an analysis must deal with a series of specific theoretical problems and challenges. In what follows, I will raise a few fundamental questions:

And finally, a methodological problem:

My essay is an attempt to find initial answers to these questions. In this introduction I can only briefly touch on the problems listed above; I have written more extensively elsewhere.1 First, the general question about communication. Within the construct of modern aesthetics, it is not self-evident that literature is both an art and a communicative fact. Since the beginning of the so-called Art Period in the eighteenth century and the emergence of the l’art pour l’art ideology, an idea of the autonomy of artistic work has developed. This has culminated in the contemporary idea of performance: that the meaning and purpose of an artistic work only emerges in the moment of its performance. Artistic messages are thus a phenomenon of a situatively linked emergence.2 With reference to literature, this means that poets write only for themselves and then leave us their texts as mere stimuli for our own individual games. In this way, perhaps literature that has been fully detached from its author, like every other form of art, leads to an original experience of being.

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Medium 9781574415933

The Weimar Moment in Katherine Anne Porter’s Ship of Fools

Edited by Thomas Austenfeld UNT Press ePub

The Weimar Moment in Katherine Anne Porter’s Ship of Fools

Joseph Kuhn

Katherine Anne Porter’s statement, made in a letter to her editor in 1956, that she planned to write "a parable of political action" in Ship of Fools (1962) has not received the attention it deserves (Porter, Letters 501). From the first, commentators have observed what is obvious, that the novel depicts the approach of the Third Reich, but they have perhaps not appreciated enough that this approach had to be through the political system of the Weimar republic and that Porter’s "parable" is set during this stage of transition. Porter intended that the German passengers on the Vera be seen as citizens of the Weimar state and, since she gives the voyage of the ship the time frame of August to September 1931, this makes them citizens during the unstable government of Chancellor Heinrich Brüning (1930-1932). Some interpreters treat the German passengers as though they are virtually National Socialists already, but the Captain, the ship’s doctor and middle-class passengers such as the Huttens have the monarchist allegiances appropriate to supporters of the traditionalist right (which was in power in Brüning’s government and that of his successor Franz von Papen). What Porter presents in parable-like form in Ship of Fools are the "political action[s]" whereby this nationalist right was outflanked by the radical right. The deliberateness of Porter’s setting her novel in Brüning’s Germany is also shown in a comment Porter made in a slightly later letter to her editor in which she said that her novel should try to bring out "the political and economic cross currents" of the crisis years of 1931-1932 (Porter, Letters 504).

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Medium 9781786390769

3: Contemplating Climate Change at Local Government: On-the-ground Politics of Adaptation Delivery in Tanzania

Friis-Hansen, E. CABI PDF

3 

Contemplating Climate Change at

Local Government: On-the-ground Politics of Adaptation Delivery in Tanzania

Sarah Ann Lise D’haen and Jonas Østergaard Nielsen

Introduction

With the recent proliferation of human and financial losses owing to extreme weather events and the increased awareness of the likelihood that major changes in the earth’s system are already underway, adaptation rockets up the international policy agenda. As livelihoods and resources in the world’s least developed nations are progressively more affected (IPCC, 2014), many of these countries are gearing up to identify priority areas and sectors to be targeted under various (global) financial mechanisms (Berrang-­

Ford et al., 2014; Heinrich Böll Stiftung and ODI,

2015). After initial policy formulations such as the National Adaptation Programmes of Action

(NAPAs), developing countries are now drafting more comprehensive national climate change adaptation policies and strategies. Amidst this heightened activity, questions arise about the practical delivery of adaptation policy on the ground (Conway and Mustelin, 2014; Lesnikowski et al., 2015). In recent years, the scientific community has explored what ‘actual’ adaptation implementation might look like, how it could come about, why and how it might be challenged and how challenges could be mediated, overcome or avoided altogether (Berrang-Ford et al., 2011).

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