When Billie Whitelaw was rehearsing Footfalls in 1976, she asked Beckett: ‘Am I dead?’, to which he replied cryptically: ‘Let's just say you're not quite there’ (Whitelaw, 1995 , 143). This equivocal presence of the body in the play recalls a precedent from twenty years before, namely the character Miss Fitt in the radio play All That Fall , who tells Maddy Rooney: ‘I suppose the truth is I am not there, Mrs Rooney, just not really there at all’ (Beckett, 2009a , 14). Though written two decades apart, both instances refer to the Jung
151 9 THE INVULNERABLE BODY OF COLOUR The failure and success of a Swedish film diversity initiative Ma r a Le e Ge r dén I n 2016, the Swedish Film Institute launched the Fusion Programme, the aim of which was to promote diversity in Swedish film production. The announcement of the Fusion Programme emphasised innovation, intersectional analysis, and feminist and anti-racist perspectives on artistic practices. The question of representation is also central, which is reflected in the guidelines for the applicants: ‘Applicants must identify himself [sic] as
9 Temporary virginity and the everyday body: Le Bone Florence of Rome and bourgeois self-making Felicity Riddy I The earliest surviving representation of an English bourgeois family at prayer appears in a fifteenth-century book of hours, now known as the Bolton Hours, made for members of a York mercantile family.1 The picture – one of a sequence of full-page illustrations – depicts a Crucifix-Trinity with four figures kneeling in front of it: a father and mother in the centre, flanked by a son and a daughter on the left and right. They all have scrolls issuing
6 Defending the body, defending the self Women performers and the law in the ‘long’ Edwardian period1 Viv Gardner Royal Court Theatre, 9 April 1907: A woman is arrested by a man, brought before a man judge, condemned by men, taken to prison by a man, and by a man she’s hanged! Where in all this were her ‘peers’? Why did men so long ago insist on trial by ‘a jury of their peers’? So that justice shouldn’t miscarry. A man’s peers would best understand his circumstances … (Edith Wynn Matthison as Vida Levering in Elizabeth Robins’s Votes for Women, Act 2
This article provides an introduction to this special section of James Baldwin Review 7 devoted to Baldwin and film. Jackson considers Baldwin’s distinct approach to film criticism by pairing him with James Agee, another writer who wrote fiction as well as nonfiction in several genres, and who produced a large body of film criticism, especially during the 1940s. While Agee, a white southerner born almost a generation before Baldwin, might seem an unlikely figure to place alongside Baldwin, the two shared a great deal in terms of temperament and vision, and their film writings reveal a great deal of consensus in their diagnoses of American pathologies. Another important context for Baldwin’s complex relationship to film is television, which became a dominant media form during the 1950s and exerted a great influence upon both the mainstream reception of the civil rights movement and Baldwin’s reception as a public intellectual from the early 1960s to the end of his life. Finally, the introduction briefly discusses the articles that constitute this special section.
The skyline of New York projects a dominant presence in the works of James Baldwin—even those set elsewhere. This essay analyzes the socio-spatial relationships and cognitive maps delineated in Baldwin’s writing, and suggests that some of the most compelling and intense portrayals of New York’s psychogeographic landscape vibrate Baldwin’s text. In The Price of the Ticket (1985), Baldwin’s highly personalized accounts of growing up in Harlem and living in New York map the socio-spatial relationships at play in domestic, street, and blended urban spaces, particularly in the title essay, “Dark Days,” and “Here Be Dragons.” Baldwin’s third novel, Another Country (1962), outlines a multistriated vision of New York City; its occupants traverse the cold urban territory and struggle beneath the jagged silhouette of skyscrapers. This essay examines the ways in which Baldwin composes the urban scene in these works through complex image schemas and intricate geometries, the city’s levels, planes, and perspectives directing the movements of its citizens. Further, I argue that Baldwin’s dynamic use of visual rhythms, light, and sound in his depiction of black life in the city, creates a vivid cartography of New York’s psychogeographic terrain. This essay connects Baldwin’s mappings of Harlem to an imbricated visual and sonic conception of urban subjectivity, that is, how the subject is constructed through a simultaneous and synaesthetic visual/scopic and aural/sonic relation to the city, with a focus on the movement of the body through city space.
This essay uses Edward Said’s theory of affiliation to consider the relationship between James Baldwin and contemporary artists Teju Cole and Glenn Ligon, both of whom explicitly engage with their predecessor’s writing in their own work. Specifically, Baldwin’s essay “Stranger in the Village” (1953) serves a through-line for this discussion, as it is invoked in Cole’s essay “Black Body” and Ligon’s visual series, also titled Stranger in the Village. In juxtaposing these three artists, I argue that they express the dialectical energy of affiliation by articulating ongoing concerns of race relations in America while distinguishing themselves from Baldwin in terms of periodization, medium-specificity, and their broader relationship to Western art practice. In their adoption of Baldwin, Cole and Ligon also imagine a way beyond his historical anxieties and writing-based practice, even as they continue to reinscribe their own work with his arguments about the African-American experience. This essay is an intermedial study that reads fiction, nonfiction, language-based conceptual art and mixed media, as well as contemporary politics and social media in order consider the nuances of the African-American experience from the postwar period to our contemporary moment. Concerns about visuality/visibility in the public sphere, narrative voice, and self-representation, as well as access to cultural artifacts and aesthetic engagement, all emerge in my discussion of this constellation of artists. As a result, this essay identifies an emblematic, though not exclusive, strand of African-American intellectual thinking that has never before been brought together. It also demonstrates the ongoing relevance of Baldwin’s thinking for the contemporary political scene in this country.
BOEHMER Makeup 3/22/05 2:55 PM Page 127 John's G5:Users:john:Public:John's Mac: John's Job 7 Transﬁguring: colonial body into postcolonial narrative to get me out of the belly of my patriarchal mother . . . [distance] my eye from her enough so as to see her in a diﬀerent way, not fragmented into her metaphoric parts. Crossing through the symbol while I am writing. An exercise in deconditioning that allows me to acknowledge my own legitimacy. The means whereby every woman tries to exist; to be illegitimate no more. (Nicole Brossard, These Our Mothers)1 The
139 4 Assembling and reshaping Christianity in the Lives of St Cuthbert and Lindisfarne Gospels In the previous chapter on the Franks Casket, I started to think about the way in which a thing might act as an assembly, gathering diverse elements into a distinct whole, and argued that organic whalebone plays an ongoing role, across time, in this assemblage. This chapter begins by moving the focus from an animal body (the whale) to a human (saintly) body. While saints, in early medieval Christian thought, might be understood as special and powerful kinds of human
confesse’ – women whose texts ‘confess’ that they are hypersensitive (literally ‘ﬂayed’) and ‘folles de leur corps’ (mad about their bodies) – alongside Marie Darrieussecq, Lorette Nobécourt, Claire Legendre or Christine Angot?6 Detambel, as a professional physiotherapist, author of L’Amputation, certainly oﬀers a twist to the trend of sadomasochism.7 As Pascal Quignard underlines, anatomical enquiries generate a pervasive feeling of malaise linked to the combination of uncanny familiarity and sadism, involving our fears, desires and fundamental uncertainties.8 Detambel