CFP: Native Shakespeares (7/15/05; collection)

full name / name of organization: 
Craig Dionne
contact email:

Native Shakespeares (Book collection; 7/15/05)

Eds. Craig Dionne, Parmita Kapadia

Shakespeare's role in colonial and post-colonial culture has been at the
forefront of Renaissance literary criticism for over a decade now, but
this scholarship has mainly looked at the original historical contexts
of Renaissance representations of new world other(s) with an emphasis on
how Shakespeare's plays reproduce the attendant anxieties and wonder
associated with these new world encounters. However, Shakespeare's role
as England’s "national poet" has been left largely unexamined in
Imperial, colonial, and post-colonial contexts. Although constructed to
represent the pinnacle of British culture, Shakespeare’s status is
highly contested in post-colonial societies, suggesting that the
playwright occupies a complex position. Treated as both a canonical and
liminal figure, Shakespeare simultaneously reifies and challenges
colonial authority, foregrounding issues of mimicry, ambivalence,
dislocation, differentiality, and subversion. How do his plays figure
in the larger "civilizing" instruments of Empire? How is Shakespeare
co-opted and rearticulated as "native" to those peoples who have learned
to read his work outside the humanizing sphere of the colonial project
to "bring within the fold" the subjects of this national culture?

 Reconstructions and revisions of Shakespeare’s plays, particularly in
terms of performance and pedagogy, point to an alterity through which
linguistic, political, historical, and cultural discourses are
challenged. Considering mainly the material practices that shaped
Shakespeare's role in colonial and post-colonial history, the various
contributions in Native Shakespeares will examine how his plays were
appropriated by non-Anglo peoples subject to Imperial culture as it was
constituted in and through theatrical and pedagogical practices. As
privileged texts that were taught as models of British history and
experience, Shakespeare's plays appeared in many "native" translations,
adaptations, and performance contexts. The essays in this collection
approach these local, "native" uses of Shakespeare as sites of contest
where notions of colonial and post-colonial identity and culture are
negotiated and reimagined.

 Recent scholarship has begun to explore Shakespeare through the
perspective of the marginalized Other. Building on the scholarship of
John Russell Brown, Ania Loomba, Jyostna Singh, Martin Orkin, Ruth
Vanita, and Diana Taylor, this collection investigates Shakespeare’s
reinvention as a “native” playwright within post-colonial discourses.
We welcome submissions from diverse critical approaches, particularly
performance studies, literary transnationalism, border cultures, and
film studies.

 Please send abstracts and titles or completed essays by July 15, 2005,
to Craig Dionne ( Email is preferred, or you
can use the below addresses:

Craig Dionne
Department of English
Eastern Michigan University
Ypsilanti, MI 48107

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Received on Wed Feb 23 2005 - 10:33:03 EST

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