This issue of Anthropoetics, like the last, contains eight articles, for a total of sixteen in Volume 15, or double the traditional number. This increase is largely attributable to the productivity inspired by the GASC series, particularly the highly successful conference last June in Ottawa. Ian Dennis, the chief organizer of the conference and very active guest editor of the previous issue, also worked on several of the articles in the present issue, four of which are adapted from presentations at the conference. Anthropoetics is particularly grateful to Ian for encouraging graduate student presenters, two of whom, Emma Peacocke and Simon Watson, contributed to this issue.
Anthropoetics is very happy to publish a second article by the distinguished French anthropologist Jean-Loup Amselle, whose perspective on issues related to la discrimination positive should be of great interest to our readers. Peter Goldman and Adam Katz are faithful contributors to Anthropoetics. Peter’s reading of The Castle demonstrates the relevance of a post-Girardian perspective to Kafka’s masterpiece, while Adam’s patient analysis of Gertrude Stein’s verbal play shows her to be something of a generative linguist in the GA rather than Chomskian sense. Founding board member Andrew McKenna‘s third article, taken from his conference keynote, is a generously illustrated panorama of art from the Renaissance to our postmodern era that demonstrates GA’s power in the domain of aesthetics, but also that of the Christian doctrine of the Incarnation, a contribution to human self-understanding without which GA is inconceivable. Marina Ludwigs, whose conference article on Daniel Deronda appeared in the previous issue, returns with a densely argued theoretical work that links GA with both psychological-ethological and philosophical writings on transcendence as an aspect of self-consciousness.
Of our three younger contributors, all new to Anthropoetics, Kyle Karthauser‘s work on “awkwardness,” inspired by Raoul Eshelman‘s conception of performatism, deftly dissects a number of contemporary cultural phenomena, from Borat to The Office, while Emma Peacocke, working in the same city as master Byronian Ian Dennis, examines the use of humor in Don Juan, Byron’s final and most enduring work. Simon Watson‘s review article points up striking parallels between Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion‘s dismissive rhetoric and that of the more extreme of the believers he scorns.
About Our Contributors
Jean-Loup Amselle is attached to the Centre d’études africaines (Center for African Studies) and directs the doctoral program in anthropology at the EHESS (Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales – Faculty of Advanced Study in the Social Sciences). He also edits the Cahiers d’etudes africaines. His main areas of interest are historical and political anthropology, Africa, ethnicity, identity, hybridity, multiculturalism, and African contemporary art. He has done field work in Mali, Ivory Coast, and Guinea. His main publications are: Ed. (with E. M’Bokolo), Au coeur de l’ethnie (Paris, La découverte, 1985); Logiques métisses, Anthropologie de l’identité en Afrique et ailleurs (Paris, Payot, 1990, 1999), English translation, Mestizo Logics, Anthropology of Identity in Africa and elsewhere, Stanford, 1998); Vers un multiculturalisme français, L’empire de la coutume, Paris, Aubier, 1996, English translation Affirmative Exclusion, Cultural and the Rule of Custom in France, Cornell University Press, 2003; Branchements, Anthropologie de l’universalité des cultures, Flammarion, 2001. His latest book is L’Occident décroché. Enquête sur les postcolonialismes, Stock, 2008.
Peter Goldman is Associate Professor of English at Westminster College in Salt Lake City. He is currently an organizer for the 2010 Fourth Annual Generative Anthropology Summer Conference (GASC), which is being hosted by Westminster College and Brigham Young University. He also serves as a member of the Anthropoetics editorial board. Peter teaches classes on Shakespeare, Renaissance literature, and film studies. His publications include articles on Shakespeare, Reformation literature, film studies, Generative Anthropology, and now Kafka. He is working on a book on Renaissance literature and the problem of iconoclasm.
Kyle Karthauser received a B.A. in English from Nebraska Wesleyan University in May 2008. Recently he was awarded a Fulbright grant and in September 2010 he will be headed to Germany to teach English. For now he lives in Lincoln, Nebraska, and works in a coffee shop.
Adam Katz is the editor of The Originary Hypothesis: A Minimal Proposal for Humanistic Inquiry, a recently published collection of essays on Generative Anthropology. He teaches writing at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut, and is presently at work on a new book on and in originary thinking tentatively titled Beginnings in the Middle: Originary Grammar, Remembering Firstness and Retrieving the Ostensive in Modern Semiosis.
Marina Ludwigs is an independent researcher who lives in Stockholm, Sweden. She has a PhD in Comparative Literature from UC Irvine and has worked with, and presented papers on, both Girardian theory and Generative Anthropology. She is currently writing a book on the anthropological structures of epiphanies.
Andrew J. McKenna, Ph.D. Johns Hopkins, is professor of French at Loyola University Chicago and a member of the Anthropoetics editorial board. He is the author of Violence and Difference: Girard, Derrida, and Deconstruction (U of Illinois P, 1992), as well as of numerous articles on Molière, Pascal, Racine, Montesquieu, Baudelaire, Flaubert, Fellini, and critical theory. From 1996 through 2006, he was editor in chief of Contagion: Journal of Violence, Mimesis, and Culture. He is a board member of Raven Foundation and of Imitatio, foundations devoted to research and education in mimetic anthropology.
Emma Peacocke is a 3rd-year doctoral student in English at Carleton University. Her thesis focuses on public museums and collections in British Romanticism.
Simon Watson holds degrees in Theology, English, and Creative Writing, and is working towards his doctorate in Theology at Emmanuel College at the University of Toronto. He has taught courses in Christian ethics and creative writing and has written for such periodicals as Queen’s Quarterly, the Canadian Medical Association Journal, Toronto Life, and the Toronto Journal of Theology.