Summer Term 2002

Prof. Martina Ghosh-Schellhorn:
VL: Transcultural Anglophone Studies

The agenda for this introductory lecture series dealing with cultures in the context of the English language can be briefly summed up as follows:
Transcultural: the interaction of cultures with one another in hierarchally-determined ways in the wake of European colonial expansion Anglophone: the use of translocated language, in particular the 'nativized' Englishes resulting from the hegemony of the colonizer's language in cultural contexts distinct from the referential scope of English
Studies: critical examination of the transmutative processes informing cultural productions from the former colonies as well as their diasporas

Prof. Martina Ghosh-Schellhorn:
HS: Virtual Worlds in Anglophone Fiction

Virtual worlds are imaginary constructs of a utopian nature; whether eutopian or dystopian in execution, the overall concept is that of providing an 'alternative' or 'counter' world by which present hegemony can be challenged, or even deconstructed. In Anglophone fiction, these worlds tend to manifest certain characteristics which can be seen to stem from a variety of factors.

Prominent among these are
a) the intertextual relationship existing between these texts, indigenous world-views, and earlier models in English such as More's Utopia, Huxley's Brave New World, and
b) the re-contextualization of these models in the specifically transcultural context deriving from British colonial expansion.

Hossain, Rokeya Sakhawat. "Sultana's Dream." 1905. Women Writing in India 600 B.C. to the Present . Eds.    Susie Tharu, and K. Lalita. Vol. 1. London: Pandora, 1991. 342-352.
Emecheta, Buchi. The Rape of Shavi . 1983. 2nd ed. London: Flamingo, 1989.
Desai, Boman. The Memory of Elephants . London: André Deutsch, 1988.
Ghosh, Amitav. The Calcutta Chromosome . Delhi: Ravi Dayal, 1997.

Prof. Martina Ghosh-Schellhorn:
HS: Re-Staging Race and Gender Discourses: Anglophone Adaptations of Othello

How has the story of Othello, the Moor of Venice, who loved Desdemona well, but not too wisely, travelled? In being adapted to other contexts, such as the apartheid South African one, where dominant discourse on race (and gender) was particularly foregrounded, what has survived of Shakespeare's play - and why is this so? In trying to answer these questions, we will be looking at the original text, some of its performances, and a number of adaptations of Othello.

Texts and performances:
Shakespeare, William. Othello. 1603/4. The Norton Shakespeare. Ed. Stephen Greenblatt et al. New York:    Norton, 1997. 2100-2172.
Carlin, Murray. Not now, sweet Desdemona. Nairobi and Lusaka: Oxford UP, 1969.
Suzman, Janet. Othello. Market Theatre Johannesburg, 1987.
Pillay, Kriben. Mr. O's Story. Durban, 1988.