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Miscelánea

A Journal of English and American Studies
Vol. 32 (2005)

Literature, Film and Cultural Studies

 Articles / Artículos 

 

 Mª Mar Azcona

MAKING SENSE OF A MULTI-PROTAGONIST FILM: AUDIENCE RESPONSE RESEARCH AND ROBERT ALTMAN?S SHORT CUTS (1993)
 

M. Mar Azcona, Virginia Luzón and Juan Tarancón

IN THE NAME OF THE PUBLIC: AN ETHNOGRAPHIC APPROACH TO THE TASTES AND HABITS OF FILM AUDIENCES

David Callahan

STEPHEN SPENDER, THE 1930S, AND SPANISH WRITING

Daniela Cavallaro

 READING ACROSS CULTURES: TWO STORIES FROM PAPUA NEW GUINEA ON ARRANGED MARRIAGES

Brendan McNamee

THE HUMAN MOMENT: SELF, OTHER AND SUSPENSION IN JOHN BANVILLE?S GHOSTS

Eugenio Olivares Merino

THE OLD ENGLISH POEM ?A VAMPYRE OF THE FENS?: A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL GHOST

Olga Seco Salvador

STRICTLY BALLROOM (1992): DEPARTURE FROM TRADITIONAL ANGLO-AUSTRALIAN DISCOURSES OR VEILED CONFIRMATION OF OLD NATIONAL-ENCOURAGEMENT MECHANISMS?
 

 Download abstracts / Descargar Resúmenes 

 

 

Reviews / Reseñas

 

 
Miriam B. Mandel (ed.)
Rochester, NY and Suffolk, UK: Camden House, 2004.
(by Micaela Muñoz Calvo. Universidad de Zaragoza)
 
THE ANGLO-CARIBBEAN MIGRATION NOVEL: WRITING FROM THE DIASPORA
Mª Lourdes López Ropero
San Vicente del Raspeig: Publicaciones de la Universidad de Alicante, 2004.
(by Bárbara Arizti. University of Zaragoza)
 
MEMORY, IMAGINATION AND DESIRE IN CONTEMPORARY ANGLO-AMERICAN LITERATURE AND FILM

Constanza del Río-Álvaro and Luis Miguel García-Mainar (eds.)
Heidelberg: Universitätsverlag C. Winter, 2004.
(by Silvia Martínez Falquina. University of Zaragoza)

 

Abstracts / Resúmenes

 

MAKING SENSE OF A MULTI-PROTAGONIST FILM: AUDIENCE RESPONSE RESEARCH AND ROBERT ALTMAN?S SHORT CUTS (1993).

M ª Mar Azcona.
This article explores the ways in which some of the unconventional narrative strategies used in multi-protagonist movies, namely, the multiplicity of characters, the abandonment of conventional notions of causality and the restriction of spectator involvement in the film may affect spectators? comprehension of the narrative. My evidence comes from an audience research investigation on Robert Altman?s Short Cuts (1993). It attempts to show both the potentials and limitations of audience response study, which should not be seen as a substitute but rather as a supplement to scholarly theorization and analysis.

Key words: Audience response studies, structured questionnaire, multiprotagonist film, Robert Altman, Short Cuts, the structure of sympathy.

Full Text / Texto completo

 


IN THE NAME OF THE PUBLIC: AN ETHNOGRAPHIC APPROACH TO THE TASTES AND HABITS OF FILM AUDIENCES

M. Mar Azcona, Virginia Luzón and Juan Tarancón
Until very recently audience research was a neglected area in film studies. Critics tended to take for granted that they could read the minds of the implied spectator(s). However, cultural studies paved the way for a serious consideration of individual spectators? actual readings. This paper, which is the continuation of a previous study, seeks to foreground the opinions of real spectators in our particular geographical context. In our previous and current investigation we made use of sociological research methods in order to obtain reliable data about cinema habits and tastes. This paper presents the results obtained through a selfadministered questionnaire distributed over a four-month period among three different age groups of the population of Zaragoza.
Key words: Film audience research, response studies, ethnography, cinema-going habits, cinema tastes, cinema genres.

 Full Text / Texto completo


STEPHEN SPENDER, THE 1930S, AND SPANISH WRITING

David Callahan

During the Spanish Civil War, the English literary world constructed important meanings about itself through its response to the conflict, a war in which the future of European Writing itself was being decided. One of the overlooked facets of this response involves the reading of and responding to Spanish writers on the part of the literary worlds for which the war was so significant. At the forefront of this encounter with Spanish writers in Britain was Stephen Spender, whose ensuing processing of what he found constitutes the most significant mediation of Spanish literature during the duration of the Civil War. This article examines Spender?s articulation of Spanish writing both in terms of the English literary world of the time and his own poetic development. Particular attention is paid to his response to and translations of Lorca. While Spender?s contacts, appreciation and translations of Spanish writers did not occasion noticeable alterations in his own work, but rather the solidifying of his beliefs about the nature of poetry and the role of the poet, the examination of this confluence of the poetry and politics of the 1930s reveals the stress points between a supposedly European politics of literary witness and the difficulties in absorbing literary traditions with which English writers were not familiar.
 
Key words: Stephen Spender, Spanish Civil War, Spanish literature, Lorca, reception.

READING ACROSS CULTURES: TWO STORIES FROM PAPUA NEW GUINEA ON ARRANGED MARRIAGES

Daniela Cavallaro

After providing a brief sociological introduction to the custom of arranged marriages in Papua New Guinea, this article analyzes two stories by PNG writer Sally-Ann Bagita: ?Regret Not? (1973) and ?The Reluctant Bride? (1974). The young men and women protagonists of these stories have no choice but to accept a marriage arranged by their families. Focusing particularly on the two female characters, the stories show how each reacts to the same initial situation in very different ways. The article claims that in these two stories Sally-Ann Bagita on the one hand appears to critique the tradition of arranged marriage. On the other hand, however, she also seems to reveal that the problems are not so much in the custom itself, as in the modern, Westernized understanding of it.
 
Key words: South Pacific literature, Papua New Guinea literature, Papua New Guinea women writers, Sally-Ann Bagita, arranged marriages.
 

THE HUMAN MOMENT: SELF, OTHER AND SUSPENSION IN JOHN BANVILLE?S GHOSTS

Brendan McNamee
 
By means of a mythic journey into the collective unconscious, Dylan Thomas transforms this Welsh cultural values into a symbolic synthesis that explains the poet's presence in Cosmos as a link between nature and man. Native Welsh tradition is ever present in the outstanding number of animal symbols that Dylan Thomas enlivens his poetry with. His readers become thus initiated into the mysteries of his classical concerns about evolution and the nature of man. Animal symbols play an all important role in a system of opposites that Thomas weaves in his poems. This scheme becomes the core of poetic significance as an expression of mythological wisdom, and its symbols represent clues that disentangle the way into inner human truth within the chaos depicted by Thomas's own Modernist universe.
Key words: Archetype, animal, symbols, tradition, evolution.

Full Text / Texto completo

 


 THE OLD ENGLISH POEM ?A VAMPYRE OF THE FENS?: A BIBLIOGRAPHICAL GHOST
 
Eugenio Olivares Merino
 
Dudley Wrights? book Vampires and Vampirism (1914) might well be said to be the first serious attempt in English to compile vampire stories and reports from all over the world, as well as to elucidate how far a certain amount of scientific truth might underlie these accounts. In this work, the author makes a statement that has passed unnoticed for both Anglosaxonists and vampire hunters: ?There is an Anglo-Saxon poem with the title A Vampyre of the Fens (186). The veracity of this claim is demolished by the fact that students and scholars of Old English literature well know that such a poem does not exist. Besides, the dearth of vampiric literature in England before William of Malmesbury, William of Newburgh or Walter Map is widely attested. Finally, it is significant that the term ?vampyre? was not used in English until 1734, as reported by the Oxford English Dictionary. The evidence that refutes Wrights affirmation is, as we can see, overwhelming, and yet there is some truth in his words.
 
Key words: Vampyre, Theory of Reception, Beowulf, Victorian England.
 

 STRICTLY BALLROOM (1992): DEPARTURE FROM TRADITIONAL ANGLO-AUSTRALIAN DISCOURSES OR VEILED CONFIRMATION OF OLD NATIONAL-ENCOURAGEMENT MECHANISMS?
 
Olga Seco Salvador
 
This article explores the ways in which the Australian feature Strictly Ballroom (Baz Luhrmann, 1992) represents on the screen inter-ethnic conflicts between the dominant Australian culture and the Spanish minority. Although the 1990s represent increased interest in the multicultural reality of the country, Luhrmann?s film proves to lack specificity in its treatment of ethnic issues, which remain repressed or submerged under cover of a more ?politically correct? attitude that favours the official ?Austro-centric? discourse. I will try to demonstrate that, despite the importance of the female Spanish character for the development and resolution of the film?s main conflicts, Strictly Ballroom?s narrative ends up by enhancing over and above everything else, the English and Irish white male values that have
traditionally defined the ?national type? of Australian culture.
 
Key words: Australia, cinema, Baz Luhrmann, inter-ethnic, identity, discourse.