564 Chapters
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Medium 9780253007278

14 Life in the Fast Lane

Gerald Sorin Indiana University Press ePub

Howard and Bette bought a large house in Beverly Hills with a “private pool right outside the bedroom window” and a patio overlooking “the whole city and basin of Los Angeles . . . which is like a sparkling jewel with a million facets.” Fast looked upon the pool, he told Rachel, “less as a luxury” than as a “means” of staying alive and healthy “on my own account.” Mortality was very much on Howard’s mind. His brother Jerry died of a massive heart attack in March 1974, only two weeks after his sixty-first birthday; and Howard was so burdened by cluster headaches at that time, “truly sicker than I have been in many years,” he said, that he did not fly east for the funeral. He complained to Rachel that he had had “a desperate necessity” to share his grief with his family; and being “alone out here, three thousand miles away,” he said, “was one of the most terrible things I have ever endured.”1

Fast could make everything, including his brother’s death, about himself; but Howard genuinely loved Jerry, and he thanked Rachel effusively for her having “rallied round the family” during the mourning period. “Aside from loving you as much as a father can love a daughter,” Fast told thirty-year-old Rachel, as if she were still fourteen, “I am also filled with admiration for your capabilities and your sense of responsibility.”2 Worse, he felt compelled to tell her that he was disappointed that she didn’t write to him often enough, and he let her know that in nearly every other letter.

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5 African Cultural Studies: Of Travels, Accents, and Epistemologies

Edited by Frieda Ekotto and Kenneth W H Indiana University Press ePub

Tejumola Olaniyan

IN CONTEMPORARY AFRICA, cultural creativity far outstrips cultural criticism, happily and sadly. Happily, because the continent is not, at least, losing out on both creative and critical production. Artists in all media, though many could do with more and better training to sharpen their native talents, are working prodigiously to shape form and meaning out of their demanding specific contexts and the intricate ways those contexts interact with the world. Sadly, because the conditions for the training of intellectuals and cultural critics are far less than adequate and because an overall healthy development of cultural creativity, the type that continually breaches accepted boundaries and invents new forms and suggests new meanings, depends on a robust interaction between talented artists and discerning critics, between the creative and the critical imagination. This is the large backdrop of my response to the challenge thrown to me, a challenge that noted, in perceivable and (understandably, I should add) wistful tones, “shifting paradigms” in the scholarly understanding of African cultural production and “a gulf between those living and working in Africa and those who live and work abroad, a gulf increasingly seen in their perspectives on the world and in the types of works they produce.”1

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Medium 9780253359551

1. Signification and Communication

Umberto Eco Indiana University Press ePub

If every communication process must be explained as relating to a system of significations, it is necessary to single out the elementary structure of communication at the point where communication may be seen in its most elementary terms. Although every pattern of signification is a cultural convention, there is one communicative process in which there seems to be no cultural convention at all, but only – as was proposed in 0.7 – the passage of stimuli. This occurs when so-called physical ‘information’ is transmitted between two mechanical devices.

When a floating buoy signals to the control panel of an automobile the level reached by the gasoline, this process occurs entirely by means of a mechanical chain of causes and effects. Nevertheless, according to the principles of information theory, there is an ‘informational’ process that is in some way considered a communicational process too. Our example does not consider what happens once the signal (from the buoy) reaches the control panel and is converted into a visible measuring device (a red moving line or an oscillating arm): this is an undoubted case of sign-process in which the position of the arm stands for the level of the gasoline, in accordance with a conventionalized code.

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Medium 9780253018618

Lincoln and the Radicals

IU Press Journals Indiana University Press ePub

a conversation with Tony Kushner

Daniel Itzkovitz

A SOMBER 1865 broadside, printed in the days after Lincoln’s assassination, hangs on a wall in the middle of Tony Kushner’s West Harlem office. It bears the image of an American flag above bold black letters: “God Will Avenge our Slaughtered Leader!”

“It’s such a scream of pain,” Kushner said about the image, “And I love the doubleness of it. It’s a call for vengeance, but it’s also in a way admonishing people to leave vengeance to the lord: ‘we don’t have to be vengeful because God will take care of it . . .’. We’ve been through other days somewhat like when Lincoln was killed, but there’s something about the confluence . . . the fact that he was killed four days after the end of the Civil War, and on Good Friday, in a country that was so predominantly and deeply Christian. It must have been really . . . unbearable.”

Kushner’s ability to imagine complex and sometimes unbearable human experience sits at the heart of his work as a playwright, screen-writer, and political activist. And so does the tension in his analysis of the broadside: between the call to popular action, and the belief that a greater force might also be there—and should be there—to help those who need it.

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Medium 9780253337559

Book Two

Ovid Indiana University Press ePub


The Story of Phaethon

The royal palace of the Sun rose high

On lofty columns, bright with flashing gold,

With bronze that glowed like fire, and ivory crowned

The gables, and the double folding-doors

Were radiant with silver. Manner there

Had conquered matter, for the artist Vulcan

Carved, in relief, the earth-encircling waters,

The wheel of earth, the overarching skies.

The sea holds blue-green gods, resounding Triton,

Proteus who changes always, and Aegaeon

Gripping the backs of whales, the sea-nymph Doris

And all her daughters, swimming, some, and others

Sitting on sea-wet rocks, their green hair drying,

And others riding fishes. All the sea-girls

Seem different, but alike, as sisters ought to.

And the land has men and cities, beasts and forests,

Rivers and nymphs and woodland gods. Above them

The image of the shining sky is fashioned,

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12. My Life

Charles S. Peirce Indiana University Press PDF


My Life c. 1890

Houghton Library

An extraordinary thing happened to me at a tender age,—as I now reflect upon it, a truly marvellous thing, though in my youthful heedlessness, I overlooked the wonder of it and just cried at the pickle. This occurred 1839 September 10. At that time I commenced life in the function of a baby belonging to Sarah Hunt (Mills) Peirce and Benjamin Peirce, professor of mathematics in Harvard College, beginning to be famous. We lived in a house in Mason Street. This house belonged to Mr. Hastings, who afterward built an ugly house between Longfellow’s and the Todd’s.

I remember nothing before I could talk. I remember starting out to drive in a carryall and trying to say something about a canarybird; I remember sitting on the nursery floor playing with blocks in an aimless way and getting cramps in my fingers; and I remember an old negro woman who came to do scrubbing. I remember her because she frightened me and I dreamed about her. I remember a gentleman who came to see my mother,—probably William Story, who drew a sketch of her.

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Medium 9780253010575

1 Police on Trial: The Tabit Affair, Newspaper Sensationalism, and the End of the Years of Lead

Jonathan Smolin Indiana University Press ePub

The Tabit Affair, Newspaper Sensationalism, and the End of the Years of Lead

On the morning of February 3, 1993, two female university students entered the first instance court of Anfa, the most affluent district of Casablanca, to report a shocking and gruesome crime. They told the public prosecutor that a man claiming to be a police commissioner abducted them from the city streets the day before, held them hostage in his apartment, and videotaped himself and an associate sexually assaulting them for more than three hours. The two women said that before he finally let them go, the man took down the information from their identity cards and threatened them with retribution if they told anyone what had happened. Scared for their safety and the shame and scandal the incident would bring on them and their families, the two women reluctantly decided to keep quiet about the brutal crime. That morning, however, as they walked in the streets near the university, they saw the same man following them in his car. Terrified, the two ran off and managed to escape. It was at this point that they decided to go to the authorities and press charges, regardless of the consequences.

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Medium 9780253372048

1. Read's Theory of Logic

Peirce, Charles S. Indiana University Press PDF

Read's Theory of Logic, 1879


Read's Theory of Logic1

P 148: Nation 28 (3 April 1879): 234-35

This work is the fruit of a travelling scholarship. But in all his travels the author seems never to have come across any modern logic, except in English. Three views, he observes, have been taken of logic; which, if limited to England, is true. Some writers consider it as a study of the operations of the understanding, thus bringing it into close relations with psychology. Others regard it as an analysis of the conditions which must be conformed to in the transformations of verbal expressions in order to avoid the introduction of falsehood.

While others again—our author among them—think the propositions of logic are facts concerning the things reasoned about.

There is certainly this to be said in favor of the last opinion, namely, that the question of the validity of any kind of reasoning is the question how frequently a conclusion of a certain sort will be true when premises of a certain sort are true; and this is a question of fact, of how things are, not of how we think. But, granted that the principles of logic are facts, how do they differ from other facts? For facts, in this view, should separate themselves into two classes, those of which logic itself takes cognizance and those which, if needed, have to be set up in the premises. It is just as if we were to insist that the principles of law were facts; in that case we should have to distinguish between the facts which the court would lay down and those which must be brought out in the testimony. What, then, are the facts which logic permits us to dispense with stating in our premises? Clearly those which may always be taken for granted: namely, those which we cannot consistently doubt, if reasoning is to go on at all; for example, all that is implied in the existence of doubt and of belief, and of the passage from one to the other, of truth and of falsehood,

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Medium 9780253356413

3 The Queen and the Lancastrian Cause: The Yale New Statutes Manuscript and Margaret of Anjou

Rosemarie McGerr Indiana University Press ePub

The appearance of Margaret of Anjou’s arms in the border decoration of three leaves in the Yale Law School manuscript of the Nova statuta Angliae (plates 1–3) is undeniable evidence that the manuscript was commissioned by a supporter of the Lancastrian monarchy who chose to link Henry VI’s queen to England’s legal history. While nothing in the manuscript indicates that it was made for presentation to Margaret herself, a close connection with the queen and her circle of supporters does explain the manuscript’s unique features. As we have seen from our examination of the manuscript’s historiated initials and border decoration, the manuscript creates a visual frame for the legal texts it contains – a frame that shapes the reader’s perceptions of the legal texts of the manuscript and links the Lancastrian line of kings, especially Henry VI, to King David, the primary medieval model of just kingship. The Yale Law School Nova statuta therefore inscribes in its record of English laws a political statement that parallels other examples of Lancastrian discourse in defense of Henry VI, and the form that this political statement takes is particularly well suited to Margaret of Anjou’s need for indirect methods to undermine the authority of those who questioned the legitimacy of Henry VI’s rule. For the reader of the manuscript, the appearance of Margaret’s arms in the border decoration of the first leaf of the statutes text also has important implications for constructing the role of English queens in preparing heirs to the throne to become just rulers, especially when justice needs to be restored to the realm: the preamble to the first statute in the collection gives an account of the unusual “transfer” of royal power from Edward II to Edward III in 1326–27, with the aid of his mother Queen Isabelle, and this account depicts Edward III and the queen as instruments of divine grace. Several other texts from the 1440s and 1450s also depict Margaret of Anjou as a representative of God’s grace who brings peace and justice to England, which suggests that this association was part of Lancastrian discourse and that the parallel between the situations of Queen Isabelle and Queen Margaret might well be recognized by readers of the Nova statuta Angliae. Margaret’s “presence” in the margins of the Yale Law School manuscript, as well as within its central text, might thus be read as a metaphor for her ambiguous role in the defense of the Lancastrian monarchy – officially marginal, yet in many ways at the center, as a voice for a king who was either literally or figuratively absent after his illness in August 1453 and for a prince who was either literally or figuratively absented by the Lancastrians’ foes after his birth in October 1453.

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Medium 9780253007278

10 McCarthyism, Stalinism, and the World according to Fast

Gerald Sorin Indiana University Press ePub

On the day after Fast’s session with the subcommittee, G. David Schine, who was appointed to McCarthy’s staff by Roy Cohn and would later become a central figure in the Army-McCarthy Hearings of 1954, summarized the novelist’s testimony. But he added what he called “new findings” relevant to Fast, including two memos indicating that the State Department, on the recommendation of writers, critics, and educators, had authorized—“in the interests of balance,” Schine claimed—the inclusion of materials and books by leftists in VOA broadcasts and in the overseas libraries of the United States.1

The memos, however, contained nothing about “balance.” Instead the key paragraphs said that the “reputation” of an author as a democrat would determine the use of his material and pretty much repeated the earlier statement made by the State Department: “If he is widely and favorably known abroad as a champion of democratic causes, his creditability and utility may be enhanced,” and if “like Howard Fast, he is known as a Soviet-endorsed author, materials favorable to the United States in some of his works may thereby be given a special creditability,” indeed, would “carry double the weight” of influence among “selected audiences” behind the Iron Curtain.2

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Medium 9780253006615

6 Anne Frank as Icon, from Human Rights to Holocaust Denial

Edited by Barbara KirshenblattGimblett Indiana University Press ePub

Brigitte Sion

Anne Frank was one of Time magazine’s twenty “heroes and icons of the 20th century,” along with such honorees as Albert Einstein and Princess Diana.1 Unlike these other figures, Anne gained this status post-humously, through the publication of her diary and its later mediations. Translated into dozens of languages, the diary has become a canonical text of Holocaust writing—often the first, and sometimes the only, introduction to this subject for many readers, especially the young. However, the diary is an incomplete account of Anne’s victimization by the Nazis. Her entries end before her arrest by the Gestapo and deportation to the Westerbork transit camp, then to Auschwitz, and finally to Bergen-Belsen, where she was a slave laborer before dying from typhus in March 1945. Anne’s diary is therefore considered what the historian Tony Kushner terms a Holocaust text “without tears, without bloodshed, without . . . the mass production of death.”2 The incomplete nature of the diary and its publication years after Anne’s murder have enabled wide-ranging interpretations of the meaning of her life story. Even as the extensive popularity of the diary has transformed Anne into an iconic figure, her symbolic value has been far from uniform.

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Medium 9780253003102

6 The ABCs of Viewing: Material Poetics and the Literary Screen / Philip A. Klobucar

PAUL BUDRA Indiana University Press ePub



My software did this to me.


To date, relatively few analyses of the screen as an aesthetic form in its own right have been produced. Critiques of web design and interface usability maintain strong historical attachments to print and typographic disciplines, conceiving electronic communication as page- and document-based. The very term “screen” continues to prioritize the cinematic arts, often implying, whether intended or not, that the methods and ideas of film criticism are equally applicable to current programmable writing practices on the computer. However, as an increasing number of visual culture historians and film theorists realize, the screen as art object invites an increasingly wide array of cultural analyses, corresponding to the medium’s growing significance as both a mode of social interface and knowledge construction. Such developments, cinema theorist Haidee Wassan points out, tend to be addressed within film studies through critical explorations of malleability and multiplicity – metaphors, in other words, “wherein screens are reconceptualised as windows that shrink and expand on cue” (74). As a formative attribute influencing how the screen work is to be engaged, perhaps even interpreted, physical dimension, for Wassan, contributes to an effective materialist schema, according to which various traditional approaches to film-based media can be interrogated over a greater number of cultural contexts. As video emerges in newly consumable formats via devices and environments as divergent as Jumbotrons perched high above freeways and cell phones and iPads clutched in crowded subway cars, no single mode of usage seems dominant. How is it possible, Wassan asks, for traditional methods of film criticism to account accurately for this radical shift in the medium itself?

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Medium 9780253372031

1. Educational Text-Books, II

Peirce, Charles S. Indiana University Press PDF

Educational Text-Books, 1872


Educational Text-Books, II

P 66: Nation 14 (11 April 1872): 244-46

We do not know when a respectable publication has been prefaced with more boastful words than Mr. Proctor's Star Atlas (London: Longmans). In a previous publication, Mr. Proctor had announced that all such works hitherto had been constructed on radically wrong principles, and had put forth a demonstration that there was only one proper way of making a star-atlas. This he repeats in the "Letterpress Introduction" to the present book, only it is a different manner of construction which he demonstrates to be the right one. A regular dodecagon is inscribed in the sphere, and then each face is produced so as to cut off a part of the sphere, and that part is represented on one map. There are, therefore, twelve equal circular maps which overlap each other slightly, except in five points on the circumference of each. The North Pole is made the centre of one of the maps. But after all this theorizing about the method of projection, Mr. Proctor fills in with stars in a very simple manner. He has apparently merely entered them from the British Association

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Medium 9780253016300

4 Bruno Schulz, the Messiah, and Ghost/writing the Past

Emily Miller Budick Indiana University Press ePub

THE INDIVIDUAL WHO in most of the texts I discuss in this section (although not all of them) figures as the object of the characters’ and texts’ incomplete mourning, and whom both the texts and their characters idolize and resurrect, is the murdered Polish Jewish writer Bruno Schulz. In The Modern Jewish Canon, Ruth Wisse (2000) laments not having discussed Schulz in her book, and she astutely asks:

Has any writer exerted greater influence on emerging Jewish literature than the enigma from Drohobycz . . . ? In what must be the highest form of literary appreciation, the American Cynthia Ozick made a lost manuscript by Schulz the centerpiece of her novel The Messiah of Stockholm (1987) at almost the same time that the Israeli writer David Grossman animated his deathless spirit in the novel See Under: Love. (347–48)

Schulz’s influence on recent literature, I suggest, is even broader and deeper than Wisse and others, such as Naomi Sokoloff (1988), and David Goldfarb (2011) have observed. Indeed, it has become something of an obsession. Wisse’s own reference to Schulz as a “deathless spirit” might suggest how she, too, has succumbed to the power of this resurrected ghostly idol. In addition to Ozick’s Messiah and Grossman’s See Under: Love, I include in this legacy of direct inheritance of Schulz (in chronological order of composition): Aharon Appelfeld’s The Age of Wonders (first published, in Hebrew, in 1978; English translation in 1981); Philip Roth’s The Prague Orgy, the fourth in the Nathan Zuckerman novels and the culminating piece in the publication titled Zuckerman Bound: A Trilogy and an Epilogue (1985); Michael Chabon’s Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay (2000) and his Final Solution: A Story of Detection (2005); Nicole Krauss’s History of Love (2005); and Jonathan Safran Foer’s Tree of Codes (2010b). Another novel that might be added here is Danilo Kiš’s Peščanik (1972; later published in English translation as Hourglass in 1990). Since Kiš is a Serbian writer, he is somewhat outside my area of expertise, as is Aleksandar Hemon (from Sarajevo), whose The Question of Bruno was published in 2000. It is to be noted, however, that Kiš’s Jewish father died in a concentration camp and that the novel, like Schulz’s writing and like many of the texts I discuss in this chapter, is obsessed with the father and his ghost. Several texts that do not directly engage or evoke Schulz that I nonetheless include in my discussion are Anne Michaels’s Fugitive Pieces (1998); Dara Horn’s The World to Come (2006), which is also not a Holocaust novel; and Krauss’s Great House (2010). I include these books because they, too, express the dominant features of incomplete mourning in relation to Jewish history that are suggested by the other texts in this intertextual nexus. They resonate deeply with the Schulzian texts.

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Medium 9780253021274

10 Prostitution

Vladimir Nalivkin Indiana University Press ePub

THE READER KNOWS ALREADY that during the khan’s rule the Muslim government and its agents, one of which was society itself, punished not only prostitution but even ordinary adultery with death. Nonetheless, both of these were practiced, and not infrequently, because catching a man or a woman in the act was difficult, even impossible,1 and there was no shortage of motivations pushing a woman toward prostitution or an adulterous relationship with a man, then as now. Men have always been inclined to diversify their experiences in the sexual sphere. Women, great seekers of love affairs and all sorts of pleasures of that kind, also love to receive even small gifts, since most of them have always been financially dependent on their husbands and have never been in a good position to satisfy their needs and desires for flirtation. The young wives of those who have several spouses, then and now, are often left unsatisfied; and poverty, which was as widespread then as it is now, made women try all possible means to struggle against need. Thus, the only difference between the past and the present lies in the fact that previously, the fear of punishment forced men and women to be extremely cautious, which is why prostitution was clandestine, while nowadays it is practiced both secretly and openly. There were, however, historical moments in the past when the clandestine prostitution encouraged by the epicurean khans spread to an enormous degree, at least in Qo’qon, for instance, during the reign of Madali-khan. (See the Short History of Kokand Khanate, V. Nalivkin, 1886.)

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