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April 18, 2017

Economy, Emotion, and Ethics in Chinese Cinema: Globalization on Speed

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Author:  David Li

The First and Second Comings of capitalism are conceptual shorthands used to capture the radical changes in global geopolitics from the Opium War to the end of the Cold War and beyond. Centering the role of capitalism in the Chinese everyday, the framework can be employed to comprehend contemporary Chinese culture in general and, as in this study, Chinese cinema in particular.

This book investigates major Chinese-language films from mainland China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong in order to unpack a hyper-compressed capitalist modernity with distinctive Chinese characteristics. As a dialogue between the film genre as a mediation of microscopic social life, and the narrative of economic development as a macroscopic political abstraction, it engages the two otherwise remotely related worlds, illustrating how the State and the Subject are reconstituted cinematically in late capitalism. A deeply cultural, determinedly historical, and deliberately interdisciplinary study, it approaches “culture” anthropologically, as a way of life emanating from the every day, and aesthetically, as imaginative forms and creative expressions.

Asian American Literature

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Edited by:  David Li

From The Woman Warrior to Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, Chang-rae Lee to Jhumpa Lahiri, Asian American literature—and the serious scholarly work it has spawned—is now central to debates about national cultures, world civilizations, and transnational imaginaries. A fine-tuned assemblage of collective critical wisdom from distinguished scholarly journals and monographs of the last four decades, this authoritative and comprehensive reference collection is organized by genre into four volumes. The first volume (“Literary History: Criticism and Theory”) showcases the foundational work that defines the parameters of Asian American literature in its various stages of evolution. Volume II (“Prose”) brings together the best interpretive work and practical criticism on key works of Asian American fiction and non-fiction. Volume III (“Poetry”) assembles the essential scholarship on Asian American verse, while the final volume in the set (“Drama”) highlights significant research on theatrical texts, performance, and “cyberrace.”Asian American Literature is fully indexed and includes a new introduction by the editor, which places the representative corpus in its historical and intellectual contexts. In charting the categorical shifts from identity to difference, politics to aesthetics, and grievance to grief, this critical overview enables a clear understanding of Asian American literary formation in the complex geo-political, economic, and social sea-change between what is now known as “liberalism” and “neoliberalism.” An indispensable reference collection, Asian American Literature is destined to be valued by scholars and students as a vital one-stop research and pedagogical resource.

April 12, 2017

Globalization and the Humanities

 

41V9DNRMCCL._SX308_BO1,204,203,200_Author:  David Li

A comprehensive collection on how economic globalization transforms contemporary humanistic inquiries on matters of fundamental cultural and political significance.

Imagining the Nation: Asian American Literature and Cultural Consent

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Author:  David Li

This book seeks to identify the forces behind the emergence of Asian American literature and to explore both the unique place of Asian Americans in American culture and what that place says about the way Americanness is defined. David Li focuses on how the sense of the nation is disseminated through the practice of reading and writing, and he argues that Asian American literature is a productive discursive negotiation of the contemporary contradiction in American citizenship. By analyzing the textual strategies with which literary Asian America is represented, the book shows how the “fictive ethnicity” of the nation continues to exert its regulatory power and suggests how we can work toward a radical American democratic consent.

Imagining the Nation integrates a fine appreciation of the formal features of Asian American literature with the conflict and convergence among different reading communities and the dilemma of ethnic intellectuals caught in the process of their institutionalization. By articulating Asian American structures of feeling across the nexus of East and West, black and white, nation and diaspora, the book both sets out a new terrain for Asian American literary culture and significantly strengthens the multiculturalist challenge to the American canon.

Jan 13, 12:00 pm1:00 pm

The Nature of California: A Work-in-Print Talk with Sarah Wald

walnatUO English and the OHC present “The Nature of California”: A Work-in-Print talk with Sarah Wald (UO English) at noon in the OHC Conference Room (159 PLC). (more…)

July 8, 2016

The Nature of California

Book cover: The Nature of CaliforniaAuthor:  Sarah Wald

The California farmlands have long served as a popular symbol of America’s natural abundance and endless opportunity. Yet, from John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath and Carlos Bulosan’s America Is in the Heart to Helena Maria Viramontes’s Under the Feet of Jesus, many novels, plays, movies, and songs have dramatized the brutality and hardships of working in the California fields. Little scholarship has focused on what these cultural productions tell us about who belongs in America, and in what ways they are allowed to belong. In The Nature of California, Sarah Wald analyzes this legacy and its consequences by examining the paradoxical representations of California farmers and farmworkers from the Dust Bowl migration to present-day movements for food justice and immigrant rights.

Analyzing fiction, nonfiction, news coverage, activist literature, memoirs, and more, Wald gives us a new way of thinking through questions of national belonging by probing the relationships among race, labor, and landownership. Bringing together ecocriticism and critical race theory, she pays special attention to marginalized groups, examining how Japanese American journalists, Filipino workers, United Farm Workers members, and contemporary immigrants-rights activists, among others, pushed back against the standard narratives of landownership and citizenship.

November 8, 2015

UNESCO on the Ground: Local Perspectives on Intangible Cultural Heritage

JFR BOOK V2.inddAuthor:  Lisa Gilman

For nearly 70 years, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has played a crucial role in developing policies and recommendations for dealing with intangible cultural heritage. What has been the effect of such sweeping global policies on those actually affected by them? How connected is UNESCO with what is happening every day, on the ground, in local communities? (more…)

August 13, 2015

UO English Newsletter now available

10349944_425902167556903_3610227624159589777_n2014-2015 UO English Department Newsletter is now available! Read about all the great things UO English accomplished this year, including Shakespeare’s First Folio visit to UO. (more…)

Jun 26, 2014Sep 22, 2014

Spring 2014 Festivities

On June 4, UO English celebrated the end of the year, recognizing student and faculty accomplishments at a reception in the Knight Library Browsing Room. The celebration was inaugurated by the UO Poetry Slam Team, which treated the department to a performance by team co-captain, Alex Dang. (more…)

January 15, 2014

The Logos of the Living World: Merleau-Ponty, Animals, and Language

Author:  Louise Westling

Presenting the philosophy of Maurice Merleau-Ponty as a theoretical grounding for studies in environmental humanities, The Logos of the Living World: Merleau-Ponty, Animals, and Language draws on interdisciplinary research to argue that human and animal semiotic activities—including cultural and linguistic behaviors—are not separate phenomena, but rather exist on a continuum.  Chapters include case studies of literary examples from The Epic of Gilgamesh to Yann Martel’s Life of Pi.

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