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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: May ::
CFP: *English Literature and Other Languages
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0397.  Thursday, 18 May 1995.
 
From:           Ton Hoenselaars <
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Date:           Wednesday, 17 May 1995 16:47:58 -0600
Subject:        Call for Papers
 
The following *Call for Papers* has been posted to a.o. RENAIS-L, SHAKSPER,
REED-L and FICINO. We apologize for any convenience caused by multiple posting.
Should you know of anyone interested in the proposal, but who cannot be reached
via E-mail, please feel free to pass on this Call for Papers.
 
                  C A L L  F O R  P A P E R S
 
          English Literature and the Other Languages
            Eds. Marius Buning and Ton Hoenselaars
 
The aim of this volume is first of all to explore a variety of instances where
English literature relies for its means of expression on languages other than
English, or dialects that may in context be considered inferior to the English
standard. The editors also wish to investigate cases where different languages
(one of which English) are simultaneously at play in the production of texts.
 
On one level, the type of linguistic contiguity as defined by the editors may
occur as a feature within the text. Examples of text-internal contiguity in our
working definition include, for example, macaronic verse, but also the use of
dialect in the *Second Shepherd's Play*, Chaucer's *Reeve's Tale*, the novels
of Sir Walter Scott, Thomas Hardy (*Mayor of Casterbridge*), Charles Dickens
(*David Copperfield*, and Emily Bronte's *Wuthering Heights*, as well as the
use of Welsh in the novels of John Cowper Powys, and the colonial dialect in
Kipling. Other instances of text-internal bilingualism deserving attention are
Shakespeare's Latin, the use of nonsense language in *All's Well That Ends
Well*, the coded language of More's *Utopia*, the secret language of
*Gulliver's Travels*, Joyce's distribution of foreign tongues, and T.S. Eliot's
foreign quotes. Broken English, as in Shakespeare or in Nadine Gordimer's
*July's People* deserves to be investigated as well. In a large number of
cases, the issue of the other language as juxtaposed to English will involve
non-native speakers or characters; reflections on the (frequently stereotyped)
foreign character and his idiosyncratic speech in English literature are also
invited. Is the foreigner endowed with a type of archaic English to set him off
against the Englishman (the past as another country)? Which verbal cliches and
stock phrases does the English author have at his disposal to convey the
impression of a foreign language being used.
 
On another level, we are thinking of contributions focusing on bi- lingualism
in a broader sense, namely as a phenomenon existing between the text and the
author. In the past, authors not native to the English language have
nevertheless adopted it partly or entirely for their prose. Joseph Conrad is
the classical example, but Vladimir Nabokov is a good runner-up. Also Jerzy
Kosinski deserves attention, like Isak Dinesen. At which point is an author
simply being translated, and at which point may he or she be considered part of
the tradition of literatures in English. In order to illustrate the issue of
various languages at the author's disposal, we are also thinking of
contributions involving the political choices involved in the literature of the
Empire that writes back.
 
In the same way that authors who were not native to the English language
employed it for their literary statements, so authors who were native speakers
of a variety of English wrote in another language. We would welcome
contributions on literature and the *lingua franca*, on John Milton's Latin
and/or Italian verse, or Samuel Beckett's work in French. Clearly, the author
versed in more than a single tongue, and also using both, introduces the issue
of self-translation.
 
Ideally, the volume should be a collection of provocative papers presenting a
wide range of ventures into a field that has remained largely neglected. In no
way should the material be exhausted; rather, the appeal of the volume ought to
be its exploratory character. The editors envisage a volume containing 20-25
articles of approximately 4,000-5,000 words in length. The deadline for
contributions is 1 April 1996.
 
Should you wish to contribute an article to our volume on *English Literature
and the `Other' Languages* ! to be published in the DQR Studies in English
Literature series (Rodopi: Amsterdam and Atlanta, Ga.) ! please submit your
proposal of 250-300 words by 15 September 1995. Proposals should be sent to:
 
Dr. Marius Buning,                        Dr. Ton Hoenselaars,
Department of English,                  Department of English,
Free University of Amsterdam,              Utrecht University,
De Boelelaan 1105,                                   Trans 10,
1081 HV Amsterdam,                            3512 JK Utrecht,
The Netherlands.                              The Netherlands.
 
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