Silence and the Silenced: Interdisciplinary Perspectives (Studies on Themes and Motifs in Literature)

Silence and the Silenced: Interdisciplinary Perspectives (Studies on Themes and Motifs in Literature)

Language: English

Pages: 252

ISBN: 1433123436

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Silence and the Silenced: Interdisciplinary Perspectives comprises a collection of essays from North American and European scholars who examine the various ways in which the theme of silence is developed in literary narratives as well as in such visual media as photography, film, painting, and architecture. The questions of silence and the presence or absence of voice are also explored in the arena of performance, with examples relating to pantomime and live installations. As the book title indicates, two fundamental aspects of silence are investigated: silence freely chosen as a means to deepen meditation and inner reflection and silence that is imposed by external agents through various forms of political repression and censorship or, conversely, by the self in an attempt to express revolt or to camouflage shame. The approaches to these questions range from the philosophical and the psychological to the rhetorical and the linguistic. Together, these insightful reflections reveal the complexity and profundity that surround the function of silence and voice in an aesthetic and social context.














that informed the project before being effaced. An epigraph, even a normative one that is not associated with Kierkegaard’s idiosyncrasies, is a fragmentary and ambiguous part of the text it is appended to. As an allographic quotation—one borrowed from an author other than the writer of the current text—it exists as an excerpt, cut off from its original context. If an original context for the epigraphic fragment exists (that is, the epigraph is not invented by the current author) and known (or

dramatically speaks of a transition from life (one writes for persons loved in the past, in der Vorwelt) to a written afterlife (they will come back as posterity, als Nachwelt). Similarly, the passage begins by naming its speakers (jene Stimme, der Prophet), but these hints of individuality (admittedly already minimal shadows of oracular types) subside into a dialogue marked only with dashes to differentiate speakers. Especially considering the attention given to this punctuation by

such, it is not perhaps so strange to see that to be an author (of written text) of a new maxim does not allow one to rise above the generality of a “saying” any more than authorship allows a complete overwriting of what has come before. The act of appropriation, as opposed to creation, becomes a literalized illustration of the impossibility of “going further” than actions/speech that have already occurred (which Kierkegaard will rail against throughout the text). The Published Hamann Epigraph

Portelli warns against the false “truthfulness” of the oral history narrative: “[...] I am concerned with the interplay between what we can assume to have been fact, and what happens in the realm of memory, including imagined events and false memories” (Portelli 29). Elsewhere Portelli indicates that the reason why one imagines the events, or why false memories are created, is the fact that one is resisting or trying not to disclose something. This could be something that has happened, something

233 Index 247 Introduction The present volume comprises essays developed from papers presented at the sixth biennial Image & Imagery International Conference, held at Brock University, October 17-18, 2011. The theme of the conference was Silence and the Silenced, which dealt with the many meanings of the term ‘silence.’ Keith Grant-Davie notes that rhetoricians have always focussed more on words than on silences (the spaces between and around words), and that silence has been seen

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