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Open Access (free)
Robert J. Corber

The author reviews Barry Jenkins’s 2018 film adaptation of Baldwin’s novel, If Beale Street Could Talk, finding that Jenkins’s lush, painterly, and dreamlike visual style successfully translates Baldwin’s cadenced prose into cinematic language. But in interpreting the novel as the “perfect fusion” of the anger of Baldwin’s essays and the sensuality of his fiction, Jenkins overlooks the novel’s most significant aspect, its gender politics. Baldwin began working on If Beale Street Could Talk shortly after being interviewed by Black Arts poet Nikki Giovanni for the PBS television show, Soul!. Giovanni’s rejection of Baldwin’s claims that for black men to overcome the injuries of white supremacy they needed to fulfill the breadwinner role prompted him to rethink his understanding of African American manhood and deeply influenced his representation of the novel’s black male characters. The novel aims to disarticulate black masculinity from patriarchy. Jenkins’s misunderstanding of this aspect of the novel surfaces in his treatment of the character of Frank, who in the novel serves as an example of the destructiveness of patriarchal masculinity, and in his rewriting of the novel’s ending.

James Baldwin Review
The representation of violence in Northern Irish art
Shane Alcobia-Murphy

intelligence regarding his choice and arrangement of words. While he changes a demonstrative preposition (‘this’) to a definite article in ‘the tangled pile’ to allow for a sense of distance, he crucially alters the opening line of the earlier drafts to intimate his presence (he now includes the phrase ‘I see’), conveying his own act of bearing witness and his imaginative intervention at one and the same time. For the reader, this opening gambit embodies the ambiguity inherent within all testimony: as Derrida reminds us, while ‘[b]y law, a testimony must not be a work of art

in Irish literature since 1990
Open Access (free)
Don’t Ever Wipe Tears Without Gloves as a reparative fantasy
Anu Koivunen

someone having been there  –​and someone bearing witness –​testifying in the present moment. Second, while not autobiographical, Don’t Ever Wipe Tears Without Gloves reiterates many familiar themes of Gardell’s writing and stage performances since the late 1980s: growing up as a queer child in a religious home, being harassed at school, bearing social stigma, and experiencing and living with the threat of violence. These topics as well as the use of the autobiographical self are the very core of Gardell’s oeuvre. Third, in interviews on Don’t Ever Wipe Tears Without

in The power of vulnerability
Open Access (free)
Ben Okri, Chenjerai Hove, Dambudzo Marechera
Elleke Boehmer

grotesque) operate not merely as parodies of power but are intrinsic to the system, deployed as part of the spectacle of authority. In this situation the binary oppositions of domination and resistance (as in Okri) melt away: the state is characterised by relations of disturbing conviviality between the ruler and the ruled. ‘Those who laugh . . . are simply bearing witness, often unconsciously, that the grotesque is not more foreign to officialdom than the common man is impervious to the charms of majesty’.13 The ruled at once domesticate the fetishes of state power and

in Stories of women
Open Access (free)
White fragility and black social death
Ylva Habel

to the alleged due process, as described above. Second, the punishments dealt out to black people for articulating protest also took on similar forms: de-​legitimisation, silencing, bereavement, and expulsion. Having had my share of both being subjected and bearing witness to the accelerating normalisation of anti-​black racism, I no longer see a valid reason to presume that there is a clear distinction between battles over cultural images or battles for black survival –​they are inextricably intertwined. From a strict film and media studies position, I would not

in The power of vulnerability
Open Access (free)
Gill Rye and Michael Worton

traumatic experience. Analysts of life writing, like Suzette Henke in Shattered Subjects, value above all the act of writing itself as therapy.35 Still other theorists point to the importance of the reader. In Testimony, Shoshana Felman and Dori Laub address Holocaust witnessing principally, but their sensitive discussion of the problematics of listening to – and reading – testimonial accounts can inform more widely.36 The point of bearing witness is to communicate the experience or event, and thus the listener has to take responsibility as ‘the enabler of the testimony

in Women’s writing in contemporary France
James Paz

gospel book re-​enacts the very contents of its pages: Christ suffering and dying at the hands of his enemies before being resurrected and his story disseminated as the godspel. If we apply the description in Riddle 26 to the many, many calves that yielded up their flesh for the Lindisfarne Gospels, we heighten our understanding of their roles in this enormous, but local, project. From an anthropocentric viewpoint, these Northumbrian animals sacrifice their bodies for Christ, bearing witness (martyrdom) to the Word made (with their) flesh. One might also recall and

in Nonhuman voices in Anglo-Saxon literature and material culture