rss_2.0Prague Journal of English Studies FeedSciendo RSS Feed for Prague Journal of English Studies Journal of English Studies 's Cover Hyneman’s : A Tale of (In)temperance and (Im)morality<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The intent of this paper is to examine the use, by nineteenth-century American authors, of the temperance novel, a popular literary sub-genre in antebellum America, as a literary means for presenting the widespread controversy in the nation as regards the achievements of temperance societies. Moreover, my goal is to show that the popularity of temperance novels, in spite of their didactic and moralistic nature, displays the public’s readiness to consume temperance literature, thus reciprocating the attempt of writers to promote social ideals and heal social ills. Finally, since Rebekah Hyneman, a convert to Judaism, is the only Jewish-American writer who wrote a temperance novel, and is one among a small number of female writers who used this genre, it is interesting to examine if and how her double “Otherness” (being a Jew and a female novelist) distinguishes her from her literary Christian male and/or female counterparts. Hyneman’s novel Leaves of the Upas Tree: A Story for Every Household (1854–55) serves as a case in point of a temperance novel that demonstrates how a dysfunctional American family operates as a microcosm and how temperance and other charitable societies fail to cope with individuals’ tribulations. More importantly, the novel aims to attest that a familial defective unit, affected by excessive drinking, breeds a ruthless societal macrocosm, lacking compassion, empathy, and social and communal support. The merciless, xenophobic and anti-Semitic community depicted in the novel serves as a prism through which the author presents much more acute plagues afflicting America.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00“Confused Anarchy and the late civil broils”: The Politics of Genre in Milton’s<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The writing of history was seminal to Milton’s conception of himself as a humanist and is a key to our understanding of his literary career. Yet, Milton’s Brief History of Moscovia and The History of Britain occupy a unique position in the way in which they are poised between the humanist notion of history as counsel and history as an assertion of “republican” values. However, situating Milton in a climate of republicanism has othen been problematic and challenging. Like writers of humanist historical narratives, Milton’s primary aim was to guide the English people in their current political crisis by making the past an analogue of the present. I wish to contend that he approaches his intention generically: by a manipulative use of the genres of history and chorography, Milton is able to straddle the earlier notion of history with the later notions of “republicanism” that permeated the political climate of England in the aftermath of the Civil War. In an inversion of Shklovsky’s notion of “form shaping content”, Milton’s reliance on genre as a vehicle for articulating his political and ideological stance, ultimately results in content shaping form.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00The Trauma of Loss as a Turning Point in Elizabeth Gaskell’s Works<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The aim of this paper is to look into how Elizabeth Gaskell reflects trauma in her literary works and what she may have been trying to teach her audience through them. As a social and realist writer, she used narrative as a means to denounce the evils of her time, many of which give rise to social traumas. However, this paper will focus on more personal traumas, particularly the trauma of loss, and also how Gaskell handles these traumatic experiences in her writings. With this purpose in mind, it is important to consider Gaskell’s own experience, how she overcame her own traumatic losses and how she used fiction both to reflect her experience and as a form of therapy. At the end of this paper, we will establish how Gaskell uses traumatic losses as turning points throughout her literary works.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00Representation of Rhetorical Presence in Virginia Woolf’s “Madame de Sévigné”<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>This paper seeks to represent rhetorical presence in “Madame de Sevigne”, an essay by Virginia Woolf that reviews Sevigne’s collection of letters. In general, Woolf’s essays that appraise an author and her/his work are organised into several sections that correspond to the traditional rhetorical levels of inventio, dispositio and elocutio. The synergy of arguments and figures that are found at each of these levels are first-order effects which can create rhetorical presence, defined as a strategy that relies on the selection of certain elements and how they are presented to the audience. Presence of this kind involves a second-order effect which transmits the persuasive and expressive value of the essay if several conditions pertaining to the values of the audience and Woolf’s expertise in writing are attained. “Madame de Sevigne” is persuasive in that it tries to increase readers’ admiration towards the letter writer and thus affects the readers in a positive way. This admiration is achieved by means of Woolf’s specific use of language, which amplifies Sevigne’s figure and grants expressive prominence to the text.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00The Seriality of Stephen King’s Overlook Hotel – a Transmedial Maze<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>This paper investigates three different medial instances of the Overlook Hotel, a space originally hailing from Stephen King’s The Shining. Based on close readings of King’s novel, Stanley Kubrick’s adaptation and a level in the action RPG Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines by Troika Games, the following text argues that the Overlook is a serial figure founded on the concept of malignant space in possession of a potent, and often overwhelming, story of violence that despite attempts at its repression cannot be silenced, as in the tradition of the Gothic ghost story. This basic formula is then traced through different media – the novel, film, and video game – where it is seen as gradually shifting its focus from the fictional characters to the recipient, which represents the intersection between the particular affordances of the respective media and the figure of a spatially-bound aggressive storyteller.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00When “We Believe that ...”: The Role of Collective “we” in the Dialogic Negotiation in Hard News Discourse<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The present paper examines the occurrence of collective self expressed by the first person plural “we” in British broadsheet hard news reports. Given that “we” typically embraces “I” and the “non-I”, and is viewed in contradistinction to “others”, it is subjective and dialogic (inter-subjective) in nature (Baumgarten et al.; Benveniste). This study, grounded in Systemic Functional Linguistics and the theory of engagement, examines the coupling, i.e., co-occurrence, of one dialogic signal “we” with other dialogic meanings (entertain, proclaim and disclaim) used for the dialogic negotiation of content and writer-reader engagement (Martin, “Beyond Exchange”; Martin and White). Couplings are interpreted from the point of view of the overall rhetorical strategy they are put to, referred to as syndromes of meaning (Zappavigna et al., “Syndromes”; Zappavigna et al., “The Coupling”). The rhetorical functions of syndromes reflect the basic dialogic meanings of the examined engagement categories such as a tentative suggestion of an opinion (entertain), a strong statement of an opinion (proclaim) and a rejection of a dispreferred opinion (disclaim). Finer variations within the individual rhetorical strategies are related to the difference in the source of dialogic positioning (an individual versus collective voice) and the referential scope of the pronoun (a precisely defined reference versus reference with a more general and diffused scope).</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00Strangers in Togetherville – Women, Physics and Popular Culture<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>By drawing on Jean Baudrillard’s cultural theory this paper aims to show how contemporary popular culture tells the stories of scientifically talented women of the past. In the course of my argument, I refer to books and films set in the past and focus on the women-and-science motif. Firstly, the stories of individual female scientists living long ago are analysed (Mileva Einstein, Joan Clarke), then, the collective female protagonists – wives of scientists living together in “togethervilles” (Los Alamos, Atomic City), and women scientists pictured in speculative fiction – are discussed. The cliches used in these texts – lonely forgotten geniuses, female worthies taken advantage of, ostracised women accused of not being feminine enough and devoted wives who help their men and their countries in World Wars I and II or the Cold War – reflect ideologies that Western culture used to believe in. Conversely, the two original presentations of past female scientists that I found both come from speculative fiction concerned with science and heavily influenced by the ideologies of science: science and pacifism, science and a sense of guilt, and science as a weapon in the quest for democracy and freedom.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00The Use of Discourse Markers in Academic Writing by In-Service Primary School Teachers of English<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>This paper presents and discusses a computer-assisted study that seeks to investigate the use of discourse markers (“DMs”) in academic writing in English as a Foreign Language (“EFL”) by a group of in-service primary school teachers (“participants”). The aim of the study is to establish whether or not there would be differences in the use of DMs in the corpus of academic writing in EFL in literature and linguistics written by the participants, who concurrently with teaching EFL at a range of primary schools are enrolled in an in-service tertiary course in English. The corpus of the study consists of the participants’ i) reflective essays in English linguistics and children’s literature in English, respectively, and ii) analytic explanatory essays in English linguistics and children’s literature, respectively. The corpus of the participants’ essays was analysed quantitatively in order to identify the frequency of DMs per 1,000 words. The results of the quantitative data analysis indicated that the participants’ use of DMs seemed to be, primarily, determined by i) genre conventions of academic writing in English associated with reflective essays and analytic explanatory essays and ii) the participants’ individual preferences. These findings are further presented and discussed in the paper.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00The Power of Recipes: Culinary Practice as a Strategy to Deconstruct Arab-American Identity in Diana Abu-Jaber’s Crescent<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>Crescent (2003) is an example of the kind of Arab-American literature that has emerged noticeably in the early years of the 21st century. It signifies a hypothesis that culinary practice is an essential cultural component for diasporic figures to define their identities, especially in a multi-cultural society. These figures embrace such component to strategically define themselves and assert their belonging and affiliation to their original homelands. This paper, as such, examines the extent to which Arab-American characters in the novel, namely Sirine and Han, consider culinary practice as a key tool to understanding their identity, locate themselves in a multi-cultural society, and re-discover their true belonging. The study of this novel shows that culinary practices, as indicated in the narratives, deconstruct Arab-American identity through various dimensions, including memory, nostalgia, hybridity, and essentialism. In addition to employing critical and analytical approaches to the novel, this paper relies on a socio-cultural conceptual framework based on perspectives of prominent critics and theorists such as Homi Bhabha, Brinda Mehta, Dallen Timothy, and Stuart Hall, to name a few.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2020-10-02T00:00:00.000+00:00Valuable And Vulnerable — The City In Ian McEwan’s Enduring Love And Saturday Direct Speech: Reporting Clauses In A Contrastive Study“There Is Great Unrest”: Some Reflections On Emotion And Memory In Julian Barnes’S Nothing To Be Frightened Of And The Sense Of An Ending Aspects Of Elf Interaction: A Discussion Of A Conversational Encounter From The Voice Corpus“Our Little Parish Of St. James‘S”: Centrality, Orthodoxy And Self-Reflexivity In The 1890S London Theatre“You Can Be Your Own Prophet.” Remembering The Scriptural In Will Self’S The Book Of Dave in Political Discourse: Evidence from the Speeches of King Abdullah II of Jordan<p> This paper reports on the findings of a study that aimed to identify the linguistic items which act as hedges in the speeches of King Abdullah II of Jordan, as well as to examine the pragmatic functions of these devices. Twenty-five political speeches of King Abdullah II, randomly selected from the official website of King Abdullah (see Appendix), were analyzed adopting Salager-Meyer’s (1994) taxonomy. The study revealed that the most frequently used hedging device in King Abdullah’s speech is modal auxiliaries, and the most frequently used hedging device subcategory is the modal auxiliary “can”. The findings suggest that these hedging devices fulfil several pragmatic functions. These findings contribute to understanding that speaking a second language (Arabic, in the case of King Abdullah II) neither affects the types of hedging devices nor the functions these devices perform. Moreover, contrary to scientific discourse (e.g., medicine), the research concludes that political discourse as a non-scientific genre resorts to hedging devices to express indirectness, politeness, lack of commitment and probability.</p>ARTICLE2015-08-04T00:00:00.000+00:00Apocalyptic Kingship, Harmony and Political Expediency: the Challenges and Paradoxes of Andrew Marvell’s “First Anniversary”<p> The following paper deals with the interpretation of one of the major “Cromwellian” poems of Andrew Marvell (1621-1678), “The First Anniversary of the Government under His Highness the Lord Protector”, 1655. The poem is first set in the context of Marvell’s poetry and his public career in the period between 1637 and 1660. The article then identifies and analyses three main themes of “The First Anniversary”: the notion of a new aeon starting with Cromwell’s rule and the apocalyptical imagery related to his Protectorate, the concept of his power and authority between liberty and tyranny, and the relation between the harmony established by Cromwell and classical Pythagorean harmonious lore. The author argues that the imagery Marvell uses to describe the nature of the regime (especially the concept of Cromwell’s “no-kingship”) shows a deeply paradoxical structure, which uncovers the frailty and insecurity of Cromwell’s dictatorship as well as the circular logic of its justification. In that sense, the poem can be read as a vivid manifestation of the dilemmas and tensions of this period.</p>ARTICLE2015-08-04T00:00:00.000+00:00Upheavals of Emotions, Madness of Form: Mary M. Talbot’s and Bryan Talbot’s Dotter of Her Father’s Eyes and a Transdiegetised (Auto)Biographical Commix<p>In 2012, Mary M. Talbot and Bryan Talbot joined the likes of Richard Ellmann, Gordon Bowker and Michael Hastings and in their graphic memoir Dotter of Her Father’s Eyes (2012) offered a new re-telling of James Joyce’s life, focusing, in particular, on the difficult relationship between the great Irish writer, and his daughter Lucia. However, the story of a complicated emotional bond between Joyce and Lucia was only a framework for an autobiographical coming-of age narrative about Mary M. Talbot herself and her violent relationship with James S. Atherton, a celebrated Joycean scholar and her very own “cold mad feary father”. Following Martha C. Nussbaum’s conception about cognitive and narrative structure of emotions postulated in Love’s Knowledge (1990) and Upheavals of Thoughts (2001), this article wishes to argue in favour of an organic connection between the volume’s thematic concerns and its generic affiliation. In other words, it discusses how a specific class of emotions pertaining to Lucia’s gradual mental disintegration can be adequately told only in a specific literary form, i.e. in a transdiegetised “commix”, an (auto)biographical account which occupies a threshold space between a comic and a novel, fiction and non-fiction, biography and autobiography, words and pictures.</p>ARTICLE2015-08-04T00:00:00.000+00:00“A Poetics of Disruption”: Farida Karodia’s A Shattering of Silence and the Exiled Writer’s Dihiliz Position<p> Bearing in mind Edwidge Danticat’s ideas about writing being a dangerous affair, this paper reflects on authorial matters regarding Farida Karodia’s A Shattering of Silence (1993). Like other novels set in times of conflict, A Shattering of Silence can be seen to deploy what the researcher chooses to call a “poetics of disruption”. This is a poetics heavily at the service of politics, intended to disrupt and destabilise the blunt binaries lying at the heart of any armed conflict. In this sense, the main character in the story, Faith, embodies a poetics of disruption in so much as she problematises the binary dimension of the political situation in the Mozambique of the period, being a white woman who sympathises with the anti-colonial struggle. This article claims that, reproducing the dynamics of the poetics of disruption in a process which can be said to replicate that of her character, Farida Karodia herself makes the most of her strategic location in a liminal terrain across nations. Her position as an exilic author can be defined as dihiliz, that is, as a threshold vantage point which enables her to be both inside and outside the situation she reflects about. Karodia’s liminality is here more pointed than is usually the case with the exilic writer, since she chooses to write about Mozambique, in many senses close to her country of origin yet not her birth-place.</p>ARTICLE2015-08-04T00:00:00.000+00:00From One Master of Horror to Another: Tracing Poe’s Influence in Stephen King’s The Shining<p> This article deals with the work of two of the most prominent horror fiction writers in American history, namely Edgar Allan Poe and Stephen King. The focus of this study is put on the comparative approach while tracing the influence of Poe’s several chosen narratives in King’s novel called The Shining (1977). The chosen approach has uncovered that King’s novel embodies numerous characteristics, tendencies, and other signs of inspiration by Poe’s narratives. The Shining encompasses Poe’s tales such as “The Masque of the Red Death”, “The Fall of the House of Usher”, and “The Black Cat” which are shown to be pivotal aspects of King’s novel. The analysis has shown that the aforementioned King’s novel exhibits Shakespearean elements intertwined with Poe’s “Masque of the Red Death”, the Overlook Hotel to be a composite consisting of various Poesque references, and that The Shining’s protagonist is a reflection of autobiographical references to specific aspects of the lives of Poe and King themselves.</p>ARTICLE2015-08-04T00:00:00.000+00:00en-us-1