Machinima – Socio-Cultural Disturbance

Tracy Gaynor Harwood, De Montfort University

ISBN: 978-1-62273-273-9
Availability: Forthcoming

Since its birth in 1996, machinima (machine-cinema) has grown into a truly global phenomenon – and its latest transformation is evident in the Lets Play community. Machinima is the first digital culture to have emerged from the internet into a mainstream creative genre and it has taken shape as an important fan culture. Its impact has been felt across many aspects of popular culture and its influence can be found in contexts such as the arts and cinema, performance, creative technologies and social media, politics and citizenship. This book traces its history and impacts through a selection of the most culturally significant works. It firstly sets out to describe the key films, provides an overview of the creative processes and interviews with filmmakers and contributors involved in their development. It then traces their release and impact among fans, users and appropriators, supported with material and interviews. This important new work focuses on the specific disruptive socio-cultural impacts of key works identified by the community and Harwood research over a period of 10 years – from film and filmmaking to digital arts, practice and theory. The book will be of interest to machinima researchers and practitioners, including game culture, media theorists and digital artists, and those interested in how creative technologies influences communities of practice over time.

The Picturesque, The Sublime, The Beautiful: Visual Artistry in the Works of Charlotte Smith (1749-1806)

Valerie Derbyshire

ISBN: 978-1-62273-618-8
Availability: Pre-order
$63 £48 €54

This book considers the relationships between British Romantic-era novelist, poet and writer of educational works for children, Charlotte Smith (1749-1806), and a number of visual artists of the eighteenth century with whom she had connections. By exploring these associations with artists such as George Smith of Chichester, George Romney, James Northcote, John Raphael Smith and Emma Smith, the book demonstrates how the artwork of these individual artists influenced Charlotte Smith’s literary corpus. It also shows a mutual influence: how the literary works of Charlotte Smith impacted the corpora of these artists. This study uncovers information which was not heretofore known regarding these artists: it reveals a mistaken attribution of a sketch which accompanied the second volume of Smith’s Elegiac Sonnets (1797) and sheds light on a print, held by the British Museum, which was previously shrouded in mystery. The artworks also enhance the existing scholarly knowledge about Smith’s biography. This book analyses the tropes and motifs employed by Smith’s artist-associates in the context of the popular aesthetics of the period and undertakes parallel readings between such visual artistry and Smith’s literary works. The book deliberates on how Smith utilises these aesthetics as narrative devices, making use of the tropes of the picturesque, the sublime and the beautiful, as well as that of a national British heraldic artwork, in order to produce and enhance meaning in her literary oeuvre. Thus, Smith uses aesthetic structures as vehicles for social critique, commentating on political, gender, moral and class concerns in addition to enhancing the perceived authenticity of her own artistry. The scholarship aims to correct the common misperception that Smith was a lonely marginal figure of Romanticism and instead asserts her central position in an enormous network of key artistic figures of British Romanticism.

The Poetics of Fragmentation in Contemporary British and American Fiction

Edited by Vanessa Guignery, École Normale Supérieure de Lyon, France and Wojciech Drąg, University of Wrocław, Poland

February 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-616-4
Availability: In stock
252pp. ¦ $61 £46 €52

The last decades have seen a revival of fragmentation in British and American works of fiction that deny linearity, coherence and continuity in favour of disruption, gaps and fissures. Authors such as Ali Smith, David Mitchell and David Shields have sought new ways of representing our global, media-saturated contemporary experience which differ from modernist and postmodernist experimentations from which the writers nevertheless draw inspiration. This volume aims to investigate some of the most important contributions to fragmentary literature from British and American writers since the 1990s, with a particular emphasis on texts released in the twenty-first century. The chapters within examine whether contemporary forms of literary fragmentation constitute a return to the modernist episteme or the fragmented literature of exhaustion of the 1960s, mark a continuity with postmodernist aesthetics or signal a deviation from past models and an attempt to reflect today’s accelerated culture of social media and over-communication. Contributors theorise and classify literary fragments, examine the relationship between fragmentation and the Zeitgeist (influenced by globalisation, media saturation and social networks), analyse the mechanics of multimodal and multimedial fictions, and consider the capacity of literary fragmentation to represent personal or collective trauma and to address ethical concerns. They also investigate the ways in which the architecture of the printed book is destabilised and how aesthetic processes involving fragmentation, bricolage and/or collage raise ontological, ethical and epistemological questions about the globalised contemporary world we live in and its relation to the self and the other. Besides the aforementioned authors, the volume makes reference to the works of J. G. Ballard, Julian Barnes, Mark Z. Danielewski, David Markson, Jonathan Safran Foer, David Foster Wallace, Jeanette Winterson and several others.

Automata’s Inner Movie: Science and Philosophy of Mind

Edited by Manuel Curado, University of Minho, Portugal and Steven S. Gouveia, University of Minho, Portugal

ISBN: 978-1-62273-631-7
Availability: Pre-order
$66 £50 €56

This book brings together researchers from a variety of fields to jointly present and discuss some of the most relevant problems around the conscious mind. This academic plurality perfectly characterizes the complexity with which a current researcher is confronted to discuss and work on this topic. The volume is organized as follows: Part I introduces the general problems of Philosophy of Mind and some historical perspectives. Part II focuses on understanding the input that the empirical sciences can offer to the theoretical problems. Part III discusses some of the core concepts of the field, namely, perception, memory and experience. Part IV debates human and artificial intelligence and, finally, Part V deliberates about the computation and the ethics of big data and artificial intelligence. The book contains valuable material for researchers in several fields such as Cognitive Science and Neuroscience, Psychology and Artificial Intelligence, and Philosophy. It can also be used as a guide to some courses at various levels, from BAs to MAs and PhD courses of several fields. It is our belief, as it is claimed in the preface by Georg Northoff, that there is an urgent need for a truly transdisciplinary exchange between philosophy and the sciences in order to stimulate some real progress. We hope that this book will become a sound step for such an interdisciplinary enterprise.

Logoteunison: Literary Easternization in Orhan Pamuk’s Works

Saman Hashemipour, Girne American University, Turkey

ISBN: 978-1-62273-606-5
Availability: Pre-order
$43 £32 €36

This book explores the enduring European and American interest in literary works portraying Eastern themes and perspectives. It examines how literary Easternization, termed “Logoteunison”, manifests in Western literary works that reflect, embody, or deploy Eastern values or concepts; or else ape, mimic, parody, or pay homage to various Eastern and especially Persian masterpieces. Such repurposing or appropriation is frequently powered by features from the postmodern toolkit: intertextuality, metafiction, fragmentation. The novelist Orhan Pamuk has been influenced (arguably unwittingly) by literary Easternization. In his Western-style works, Pamuk channels Eastern values, creating texts nevertheless in the Western mold and primarily aimed at Western readers. Pamuk uses Istanbul—the writer’s birthplace, a city between two worlds, a halfway land binding together Asia and Europe—both as a physical setting and to symbolically mediate Eastern and Western worldviews. This title has a threefold purpose: by establishing a theoretical and contextual background for Eastern masterpieces and forming a distinctive review of Eastern culture as filtered through Pamuk’s works, it suggests a new theory in literary criticism, one which aims to adopt a novel philosophical approach to the study of literary Easternization. Students of comparative and Turkish literature will find in this volume detailed background information about Turkish, Persian, and Arabic masterpieces, as well as their significant cultural correspondences and affinities, especially regarding their employment of Sufi themes. Any student or scholar interested in the postmodern cross-fertilization of Middle Eastern and Western literature will find this work fascinating and rewarding.

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