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This short chapter examines the degree to which the communal experiences of political prisoners on what Irving Goffman calls a “total institution” like South Africa’s Robben Island Prison might paradoxically exemplify the kind of community that Aristotle requires for the exercise of virtue proper: a sense of communal friendship built on trust and the virtues celebrated by Nelson Mandela: “Honesty, sincerity, simplicity, humility, pure generosity, absence of vanity, readiness to serve others”. But at the same time, it complicates that utopian vision with the fact that such communities tend to establish their sense of identity on the exclusion of others, regarded as alien, different, or threatening, a tendency present on Robben Island. The chapter consequently opposes the Aristotelean notion of communal virtue with a very different concept of ethics derived from Levinas: in which no community may be established in opposition to another, but in which the ethical imperative is to be open to otherness, beyond to bounds of the Aristotelian polis. It argues that the prisoner’s signing their names against their favourite passage from Shakespeare, in Sonny Venkatrathnam’s copy of Shakespeare’s complete works, is an exemplum of such openness to the stranger.
Kövecses offers a cognitive exploration of the concept of the (not necessarily criminal) Other, approached from a metaphorical and metonymic angle. He argues that our human way of categorisation, in particular the ’internal-subject’ versus ’external-other’ relationship, is at its core a metaphorical way of perceiving the Other in conceptual categories. Douthwaite analyses a short story to show the application of the concepts identified by Kövecses apply concretely to crime and to crime-related texts.
Introduces the volume, identifying themes, methodology and goals; positions it in relation to other works; and outlines the chapters and their running order as well as those features that unite chapters or lead from one to the next.
The introduction gives an overview of the book’s aim and the conceptual approach to its topic. The subject is the particular way in which the Greeks, in the context of their general project of understanding the world, have made sense of their past. That means it is about history as an element of Greek culture. The concept with which the subject is dealt with is that of intentional history, which is based on the theories of Maurice Halbwachs and Aleida and Jan Assmann on collective memory and social remembrance. With ‘intentional history’, I refer to that part of history that is relevant to the collective identity of social groups of all sizes. This concept allows statements to be made across cultures and epochs and thus makes it possible to draw a connection from antiquity to modernity.
This research explores how the post-Yugoslav film-makers, in particular Nebojša Slijepčević, Goran Dević, and Srđan Keča, investigate the dilemma of ethnic identity and face the cultural division in the post-conflict societies. The article aims to discuss cinematic representations of the other and conduct a deeper textual analysis of the film Srbenka (2018), in comparison to After the War (2006) and Imported Crows (2004). Also, the article bridges the gap between more conceptual literature on transnational cinema (Stephen Crofts, Steven Rawle, Saša Vojković), nationalism studies (Benedict Anderson, Rogers Brubaker, V.P. (Chip) Gagnon Jr.), as well as history (Tara Zahra) and more empirical analysis providing examples from the contemporary post-Yugoslav cinema. Therefore, the article demonstrates how applying theories from different disciplines enrich film analysis when investigating the otherness.
This chapter maps out the central paradigms for conceptualizing the monsters of American horror, marking their inextricability from politics and moving toward identifying the principal forms of monstrosity in the early twenty-first century. Monstrosity has been defined as impure and abject, existing on borders, not categorizable; the incarnation of “otherness,” typically racial, gendered, sexual, or class; and a terrifying reflection of the “self,” as the monster has increasingly become an avatar of “normality” rather than what threatens it, embodying dominant rather than marginalized social structures and ideologies. Most recently, monsters are being generated by scientific explorations that insist on the thoroughgoing entanglement of life, the ways in which the “human” is not singular, not exceptional, but rather symbiotically entwined with nonhuman life. This form of horror is adeptly exploited in Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s 2020 novel Mexican Gothic, about an entangled fungus and a colonial family.
This chapter explores the discourses used to construct disability as different in nineteenth-century Britain and its empire. First, I argue that in this period a constellation of figures came to be seen as a class of people distinct from the remainder of the British population. The census and philanthropic literature functioned to crystallise disability as something tangible and other. Conceptualising disabled people in this way required considerable discursive, architectural, administrative, philanthropic and pedagogical work and this work occurred both in the empire overseas and at home in imperial Britain. Secondly, I argue that the status of Britain, throughout the nineteenth century, as the heart of a global empire, was crucial to how ideas about disability came to be formed. My third argument is that whilst empire shaped the way in which disability was constructed, the reverse was also true: thinking about disability moulded the way in which the colonial ‘other’ was imagined. People of colour who may otherwise be considered non-disabled were repeatedly described using language that evoked disablement. My overarching argument is, therefore, that discourses of race and disability, whilst not one and the same, were not simply related discourses but were mutually constituted.
Colonising Disability explores the construction and treatment of disability across Britain and its empire from the nineteenth to the early twentieth century. Drawing on a wide range of sources, Esme Cleall explores how disability increasingly became associated with 'difference' and argues that it did so through intersecting with other categories of otherness such as race. Philanthropic, legal, literary, religious, medical, educational, eugenistic and parliamentary texts are examined to unpick representations of disability that, overtime, became pervasive with significant ramifications for disabled people. Cleall also uses multiple examples to show how disabled people navigated a wide range of experiences from 'freak shows' in Britain, to missions in India, to immigration systems in Australia, including exploring how they mobilised to resist discrimination and constitute their own identities. By assessing the intersection between disability and race, Dr Cleall opens up questions about 'normalcy' and the making of the imperial self.
The introduction examines the concept of italianità within its historical and cross-disciplinary context. Since the eighteenth century, music and especially opera have frequently been used as signifiers of national identity. Rousseau’s writings, and the responses they received, were particularly influential in associating music with national styles, reflecting linguistic conditions as well as the development of musical and operatic genres. These ideas resonated in debates on music, but also in travel writing and political thought, as exemplified in the works of de Staël, Stendhal and Goethe, but also Byron and Dickens. During the nineteenth century, often narrowly described as an age of nationalism, drawing connections between music and national character assumed a new dimension in political and aesthetic debates, partly due to the idea of reading opera as a contribution to processes of political emancipation. Especially in the non-European world, ideas about music were negotiated in relation to colonial and postcolonial experiences. But they also contributed to new notions of cosmopolitanism and a universal sense of belonging. The extent to which opera was intended to take a position within the political battles of national movements and global conflicts remains a matter of debate among opera scholars and historians.
When the Bush administration launched the War on Terror after the attacks of 9/11, Gothic responded through complex critiques of the discourses and the violence this entailed, but also by unapologetically energising the endeavour to maintain US global hegemony. Noting a number of geopolitical, economical and cultural similarities between late nineteenth-century Britain and the US at the turn of the millennium, this chapter observes that a dominant strand of American Gothic in the early twenty-first century is in fact effectively imperial. The chapter then discusses the interplay between what can thus be termed an ‘American Imperial Gothic’ and the post-9/11 period, paying particular attention to the ideological and affective work that Gothic performs. Located at the intersection between postcolonial and decolonial studies, and international relations and security studies, the chapter furthermore explores how a union of various entertainment corporations and government institutions is involved in the production and dissemination of often deeply reactionary Gothic texts. These rehearse racists and sexist tropes central to the neocolonial project, but also reveal how the anxieties always tied to vast imperial and capitalist projects rise to the surface during moments of sudden upheaval and transformation.
The idea that personality can influence our perception of ‘otherness’ is widely accepted within the literature of social sciences. Undoubtedly, the principle of dehumanization played an important role in genocides during the 20th and 21st centuries. In totalitarian or post-totalitarian regimes ‘otherness’ may present a challenge to the absolute power. Recent studies showed that negative attitudes toward ‘otherness’ – also known as xenophobia – are on a rise in the Czech Republic.A deeper analysis of the personality in relation with perception of otherness is still missing.
The presentation analyse the personality variables associated with the perception of otherness and compare the differences between various age groups, genders, individuals with different levels of education, and above all, the differences between various groups. Several contrast groups are compared - general population, high neuroticism sample, personality disorder sample, xenophobic and xenophilic sample.
Bogardus Scale of Social Distance as a measure of perception of otherness is compared with in-depth analysis of personality functioning (Semi-Structured Interview for Personality Functioning DSM–5, STiP-5.1).
We analyze the results of five samples with respect to demographic variables, variables of personality functioning and try to point out the relationship between more attitudes and underlying personality functioning. The importance of some demographic variables (as age) and connections between personality functioning (Self and Interpersonal) and social distance is emphasized and discussed.
The project help us to understand perception of otherness in light of demographic and relative power of personality factors.
This chapter introduces the mechanisms of deliberate or coincidental 'othering' of immigrants through law and the application of law. It starts by introducing what 'othering' means and then transplants the findings into the context of legislation and law. The chapter emphasizes the systemic 'otherness' of immigrants in a legal system defined by the nation state. Citizens are per definition in the in-group, whereas foreigners are per definition in the out-group. The chapter also addresses how the differentiation between foreigner and citizen is more complicated in the EU with its EU citizenship and free-movement rights. The chapter addresses the role of law as an amplifier of 'otherness' or as a tool for the inclusion of immigrants.
EU citizens living in the United Kingdom and EU citizens-qua-UK nationals living in other Member States following the referendum on the UK’s continued membership of the EU on 23 June 2016 became ‘the numbered’ 'others'. Their identities were redefined overnight not by them, but by state authorities and their co-EU citizens. In this chapter, I trace the process of 'othering' of EU citizens, which had started several years before the referendum in 2016, and unravel the key moments, forces, and strategies that made it possible by utilising a discursive theoretical approach. I argue that the quest for EU citizens’ rights in the UK under Brexit, just like the quest for migrants’ rights, is a quest as much for the realisation of the fundamental status of Union citizenship as for the effectiveness of the principle of respect for human dignity.
This chapter attempts in brief to rethink the history of magic by considering its relations with otherness. Otherness is conceived of as a relative and dynamic category, generated as the necessary result of claims to truth. The long history of the term 'magic' is characterised throughout by attempts to other it. The chapter pauses on several key moments in this history, ancient and medieval, before considering in slightly more detail the consequences of the Protestant Reformation for the imposition of a modern conception of magic. The rise of science and discourses of objectivity provide impetus for the modern othering of magic, and literature’s role in this process is examined through a focus on the rise of realism. The chapter then shows how the breakdown of consensus about the nature of reality in the early twentieth century leads to new forms of artistic expression, central among which is magical realism. It argues that throughout this long history magic, in a variety of forms, has displayed an extraordinary resilience, retaining its capacity to express important aspects of experience, society and meaning.
In this chapter, I investigate the meaning of profound feelings of emptiness following the bereavement of an intimate other. Contrary to a standard Freudian account, stating that such feelings of emptiness are exclusively emanating from an experience of a vacancy or absence in the world, I argue that they equally express a particular kind of emptiness of the embodied self. Specifically, I propose that feelings of emptiness, following the loss of an intimate other, are the affective expression of a profound constriction in the existential texture of my self-familiarity as rooted in a being-with. After unpacking this idea, I illustrate it in detail through five modalities and point to the existential consequence that bereavement not only implies a need to relearn the world, but a need to the task of relearning myself.
This article revisits and revives the concept of ‘the Stranger’ in theorising international relations by discussing how this figure appears and what role it plays in the politics of (collective) identity. It shows that this concept is central to poststructuralist logic discussing the political production of discourses of danger and to scholarship on ontological security but remains subdued in their analytical narratives. Making the concept of the Stranger explicit is important, we argue, because it directs attention to ambivalence as a source of anxiety and grasps the unsettling experiences that political strategies of conquest or conversion, including practices of securitisation, respond to. Against this backdrop, the article provides a nuanced reading of the Stanger as a form of otherness that captures ambiguity as a threat to modern conceptions of identity, and outlines three scenarios of how it may be encountered in interstate relations: the phenomenon of ‘rising powers’ from the perspective of the hegemon, the dissolution of enmity (overcoming an antagonistic relationship), and the dissolution of friendship (close allies drifting apart). Aware that recovering the concept is not simply an academic exercise but may feed into how the term is used in political discourse and how practitioners deal with ‘strange encounters’, we conclude by pointing to alternative readings of the Stranger/strangeness and the value of doing so.
With reference to an impressive range of examples from across European genres and repertoires, Suzanne Aspden illustrates ways in which dance has been embodied within Western ‘art’ music. Exploding the myth of ‘the music itself’, Aspden notes a significant historical swing in both aesthetics and compositional practice during the nineteenth century, as musical representations of dance gradually morphed from being overtly ornamental and elaborate to more straightforwardly transparent in their dependence upon a long-established vocabulary of musical topics. While tracing this historical shift, Aspden offers a nuanced critical commentary on some of the shop-worn assumptions about dance that have marked traditional textbook histories of European music, especially negative associations between dance and the anti-intellectual, the ‘low’, the feminine and the ‘Other’.
This chapter considers the intersection of Gothic and Orientalism in the long eighteenth century from the joint perspective of its origins and ideological relevance. Having traced the influence on Gothic of literary materials imported from the East, it examines the terrifying effects of commercial and imperial concerns in works such as William Beckford’s Vathek, Charlotte Dacre’s Zofloya, Matthew Gregory Lewis’s ‘The Anaconda’, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and Charles Robert Maturin’s Melmoth the Wanderer. The relevance of this commercial and imperial imaginary for figurations of subjectivity, the body and sexuality is then explored with reference to George Colman’s Blue-Beard, Robert Southey’s The Curse of Kehama, Byron’s ‘Turkish Tales’, Walter Scott’s ‘The Surgeon’s Daughter’ and the anonymous novel The Lustful Turk. Through its double focus, the chapter argues that, if the East is a foundational feature in early Gothic, the troubling power of Orientalist Gothic depends on distance and alienness, though also, and more perturbingly, on the proximity and contact promoted by an expanding commercial and territorial imperialism.