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Voices of Holiness in Our Time
In his new book, Saints As They Really Are, priest and scholar Michael Plekon traces the spiritual journeys of several American Christians, using their memoirs and other writings. These “saints-in-the-making” show all their doubts and imperfections as they reflect on their search for God and their efforts to lead holy lives. They are gifted yet ordinary women and men trying to follow Christ within their flawed and broken humanity—“saints as they really are,” as Dorothy Day put it.
The Performance Features of French Hagiographic Mystery Plays
In the introduction to Saints at Play, Hamblin notes that "this approach is intended to strengthen a comparative analysis of relatively similar texts created within a particular cultural setting. [The plays'] somewhat parallel narratives and performative structures facilitate their comparison as performance remnants. . . . To that end, the first three chapters will investigate the cultural contexts in which these plays were produced and performed, as well as the cultural content that spoke to and for the communities that created them. In two subsequent chapters, the performance features of these remnants, verbal and nonverbal, textual and supratextual, will be compared in search of evidence of a collective performance history. Anomalies and questions regarding these texts as reminiscent of a performative past will be posited and conclusions drawn as to how these texts expressed contemporary social perspectives at both localized and generic levels.
Tenth to Twelfth Centuries
The Texas State Raid on the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints
Vol. 1 (1981) through current issue
The SAIS Review is dedicated to advancing the debate on leading contemporary issues of world affairs. Seeking to bring a fresh and policy-focused perspective to global political, economic, and security questions, SAIS Review publishes essays that straddle the boundary between scholarly inquiry and practical experience. Contributors have a wide range of backgrounds, and include distinguished academics, policy analysts, leading journalists, parliamentarians, and senior officials from both government and non-governmental organizations. A book review section is featured in every issue.
This survey of Sally Potters work documents and explores her cinematic development from the feminist reworking of Puccinis opera La Boheme in Thriller to the provocative contemplation of romantic relationships after 9/11 in Yes. Catherine Fowler traces a clear trajectory of developing themes and preoccupations and shows how Potter uses song, dance, performance, and poetry to expand our experience of cinema beyond the audiovisual. At the heart of Potters work we find a concern with the ways in which narrative has circumscribed the actions of women and their ability to act, speak, look, desire, and think for themselves. Her first two films, Thriller and The Gold Diggers, largely deconstruct found stories, cliches, and images, while her later films create new and original narratives that place female acts, voices, looks, desires and thoughts at their center. Fowlers analysis is supplemented by a detailed filmography, bibliography, and an interview with the director.
Oscar Wilde and the Aesthetics of Transgression
"Salome's Modernity is a first-class piece of scholarship---at once learned, sharply focused, and beautifully, indeed, entertainingly written. Above all, it is a significant contribution to modernist studies, for it takes a number of themes that appear in the various writings about Salome to show precisely how the various authors, performers and film-makers utilized and rethought these themes for their own times." ---Herbert S. Lindenberger, Stanford University "Salome's Modernity is intellectually powerful, truly informative, and engagingly written. No other book rivals it in scope when it comes to placing Wilde's play in a cultural and literary genealogy that links memorable works of poetry, fiction, drama, opera, and film." ---Joseph Bristow, UCLA Oscar Wilde's 1891 symbolist tragedy Salomé has had a rich afterlife in literature, opera, dance, film, and popular culture. Salome's Modernity: Oscar Wilde and the Aesthetics of Transgression is the first comprehensive scholarly exploration of that extraordinary resonance that persists to the present. Petra Dierkes-Thrun positions Wilde as a founding figure of modernism and Salomé as a key text in modern culture's preoccupation with erotic and aesthetic transgression, arguing that Wilde's Salomé marks a major turning point from a dominant traditional cultural, moral, and religious outlook to a utopian aesthetic of erotic and artistic transgression. Wilde and Salomé are seen to represent a bridge linking the philosophical and artistic projects of writers such as Mallarmé, Pater, and Nietzsche to modernist and postmodernist literature and philosophy and our contemporary culture. Dierkes-Thrun addresses subsequent representations of Salome in a wide range of artistic productions of both high and popular culture through the works of Richard Strauss, Maud Allan, Alla Nazimova, Ken Russell, Suri Krishnamma, Robert Altman, Tom Robbins, and Nick Cave, among others. Jacket illustration: Maria Ewing in Richard Strauss's Salome, Pittsburgh Opera, 2001, © Suellen Fitzsimmons.
White Gold of the Ancient Maya
In Salt: White Gold of the Ancient Maya, Heather McKillop reports the discovery, excavation, and interpretation of Late Classic Maya salt works on the coast of Belize, transforming our knowledge of the Maya salt trade and craft specialization while providing new insights on sea-level rise in the Late Holocene as well.
Salt, basic to human existence, was scarce in the tropical rainforests of Belize and Guatemala, where the Classic Maya civilization thrived between A.D. 300 and 900. The prevailing interpretation has been that salt was imported from the north coast of the Yucatan. However, the underwater discovery and excavation of salt works in Punta Ycacos Lagoon demonstrate that the Maya produced salt by boiling brine in pots over fires at specialized workshops on the Belizean coast. The Punta Ycacos salt works are clear evidence that craft specialization took place in a nondomestic setting and that production occurred away from the economic and political power of the urban Maya rulers, thus providing new clues to the Maya economy and sea trade.
McKillop also presents new data on sea-level rise in the Late Holocene that extend geologists' and geographers' sea-level curves from earlier eras. Likewise, she enters the environmental-versus-cultural debate over the Classic Maya collapse by evaluating the factors that led to the abandonment of the Punta Ycacos salt works at the end of the Classic Period, synonymous with the abandonment of inland Maya cities.
“A clear, seemingly effortless voice and a special curiosity animate the world Liz Tilton gives us in Salt. And it is a world, ranging from domestic life—loose change, gardening, the intricacies of love—to manatees and the governor of Texas. Discoveries abound. Salt is smart, subtle, and essential.”—Don Bogen
“Never coy or mincing, Liz Tilton’s poems burst open our doors to swagger forth with announcements on their lips, announcements that promise a world that is at once familiar with the ‘houseguests or in-laws’ who threaten to live in our basements (and whose approach is denied), and yet refuses total fidelity to realism, as the speaker continues to rise above us, a ‘cowgirl / hovering above the horehound ground, / leather holsters strapped with a big buckle, / helium riding high on [her] hips.’ The bold, buoyant poems of Salt shimmy ‘up to the mike stand’ to sing our heats in forward and reverse.”—Cate Marvin
Local Society and Regional Monopoly in Boyacá, 1821-1900
In republican Colombia, salt became an important source of revenue not just to individuals, but to the state, which levied taxes on it and in some cases controlled and profited from its production. Focusing his study on the town of La Salina, Joshua M. Rosenthal presents a fascinating glimpse into the workings of the early Colombian state, its institutions, and their interactions with local citizens during this formative period.