Volume 1, March 2005

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    [BOOK REVIEW] Crafting Memory Review of Jane Urquhart, The Stone Carvers
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2008-04) Habel, Chad Sean
    If history is more or less bunk, then memory is more or less craft. In The Stone Carvers Jane Urquhart depicts characters who are traumatically hauled into the modern age, and suffer for it. This painful journey begins with the foundation of a pioneer village in South-western Ontario and ends with a redemptive kind of healing on former French battlefields after WWI. Across all this time and space, memory and the power of art and craft are crucial in maintaining social fabric as well as the individual psyche.
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    [BOOK REVIEW] Regenerative Spirit Vols 1 & 2
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2008-04) Riemenschneider, Dieter
    Anna Rutherford once wrote, reading the literature of the Commonwealth, the “regenerative spirit is stressed, a link is established between the old world and the new. It is precisely the attention paid to the regenerative spirit that characterises the essays assembled in these two volumes, papers read at several conferences organised by the Centre for Research in the New Literatures in English (CRNLE) and the School of Humanities at Flinders University in Adelaide. Dedicated to Rutherford’s memory and to honour her as an outstanding pioneer in Commonwealth Literature / New Literatures in English / Post-colonial studies, the two collections address themes of exile and migration, dislocation, diasporan and cross-cultural writing.
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    Paradisiacal Imagination: Rabindranath Tagore’s Visvovod or Vision of Non-National Neo-Universalism.
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2005-02) Quayum, Mohammad A
    Why is the poet who was considered a literary titan in his time, a supreme symbol of India’s culture and spirit, now so widely neglected? Is it because of some change of taste in poetry? As Tagore has aptly said, ‘poetry is… a matter of taste’ Or is it because Tagore was too provincial a poet to retain a universal appeal after his death? Perhaps the reasons are not so much poetical but ideological and philosophical,for Tagore was a poet-philosopher and the world simply chose not to tread the path that he sought to pave.
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    Rajni Walia, Women and Self: Fictions of Jean Rhys, Barbara Pym, Anita Brookner.
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2005-03) Thomas, Sue
    This review calls into question Walia’s views, calling them ‘dated’ and questioning their validity in light of modern scholarship and her ‘under-acknowledged dependency’ on other scholars’ works.
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    Playwright with a Plural Consciousness: Kuo Pao Kun. Images at the Margins: A Collection of Kuo Pao Kun’s Plays.
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2005-02) Quayum, Mohammad A
    Pao Kun’s ability to express himself creatively in two languages, or swim in two unlike streams, is what constitutes his main strength. It gives him that rare identity of a cultural individualist and pluralist at the same time and the privilege to provide the vital bridge between the indigenous Chinese and Anglophone theatres in Singapore. It empowers him to dialogue with culturally divergent groups of people, who, as he explains in an interview, ‘think differently and have different experiences’. Paradoxically however, it also brings him into a kind of marginality – a fringe kind of existence that is experienced by one whose imagination is not anchored in any one particular language or culture, and who habitually occupies a neutral ground between two seemingly incompatible worlds, acting as an arbiter of the diverse.
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    Value of Others
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2005-02) Tucker, Robyn
    Reviews of Keiko Tamura's "Michi's Memories: The story of a Japanese War Bride" and Akira Yoshimura's "Shipwrecks"
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    Ngugi’s Matigari,1 a Non-Materialist Discourse and Post-Modernism
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2005-02) Breidlid, Anders
    One of the major themes in Ngugi’s latest novel Matigari is the deceptiveness of any notion of an epistemological rupture between colonial and post-colonial society. The confrontational tone of Devil on the Cross is retained and Matigari posits a vision of utopia, which must be obtained through armed struggle. It is my contention in this article that Matigari addresses the urgency of the polarised situation of post-colonial Kenya, not only by transgressing his former, materialist discourse, but by having only one story to tell and thereby distancing his narrative from the multiple stories of postmodern fiction. The final part of this article discusses the relationship between Matigari’s role as a prophet and the decentred, fragmentary voice of post-modern literature.
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    Nadine Gordimer, The Pickup
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2005-02) Kossew, Sue
    Nadine Gordimer’s most recent novel, The Pickup, is a novel that has its place in what Gordimer has called a post-apartheid ‘literature of transition’, taking as its subject-matter the issues of displacement, economic exile and migration.
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    Critical Grief: walking the personal/public tightrope in the novels of Marion Halligan and Carol Shields
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2005-02) Glover, Brenda
    Marion Halligan’s The Fog Garden1 and Carol Shield’s Unless2 are novels that foreground literary women’s experience of grief. They are the writers’ responses to extreme life crises. Marion Halligan writes following the death from cancer of her husband and life partner of thirty-five years. Carol Shields has also been immersed in a battle against cancer, one that she is losing. Grief has been the central focus of these women’s lives and they appear to be driven by a need to express their grief and outrage through their literature, a process they have managed in quite different ways.
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    Barbara Baynton: Liar or Truth-teller
    (Department of English, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia, 2005-02) Moore, Rosemary
    Baynton’s characteristic narrative strategies reveal her difficulties in writing as a woman within a system of oppression in which suppressed truths could only be indirectly acknowledged. Baynton has acquired a literary reputation as a woman who writes against the bush tradition, who is openly critical of the masculinist bias of her time. However, although it is generally accepted that fiction is a form of lying – or a way of telling the truth in fictional form – her achievement has been diminished because she is regarded as a liar.
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    Impact of the Supernatural on Achebe’s Characters
    (Centre for Research in New Literatures in English, Department of English, Flinders University, South Australia, 2008-04) Usongo, Kenneth
    This paper contends that the behaviour of most of the tragic heroes in Achebe’s novels seems to be conditioned by forces beyond their control. A simple threat or a curse or even promise of evil can greatly impact on a character’s thoughts and actions. His overall world view appears to be guided by forces or powers that cannot be explained by the laws of science and seem to involve gods or even magic. And this inclination towards the supernatural is in consonance with the human drive for achievement, autonomy, dominance, order or affiliation. This investigation, therefore, attempts to explain the actions of Okonkwo, Ezeulu and others within a historico-cultural perspective.