PoCoPages - Another Life

full name / name of organization: 
Judith Misrahi-Barak, University Montpellier 3 (France)

Another Life

Call for Contributions


Presses universitaires de la Méditerranée


Borrowing Derek Walcott's title for his autobiographical poem Another Life, this volume of the new series 'PoCoPages' will focus on the former lives of writers before they came to writing, or the parallel professions they have carried on exercising while at the same time getting their novels, short stories, poems or plays published. Many writers have not always been writers, but worked first in professions as diversified as medecine for some, to customs officer, anthropologist, stage manager, engineer, or land surveyor for others. What alchemy took place for such a swing to be brought forth and what does this exactly imply? Did the author gradually drift into writing, or was the shift more radical a life change ? The question of whether such transition is — with a certain amount of hindsight — perceptible in the writing itself, and if it is, whether our knowledge of it, helps, hinders, or is of no matter whatsoever to our reading, also needs to be addressed. Does the former professional life of these authors shape their writing, or would it be more accurate to define it in terms of 'haunting' their work ? Is the new life to be seen as contained within the former life, or should we look at it the other way round ?

The themes of haunting and gestation, and those of genealogy and formation thus open possible vistas of exploration and interrogation. In the same way, the relationship between 'the new territory' and 'the old territory' may be examined, almost as though it were a diasporic bond calling upon us to ponder what the links are with the former being. Which is the territory that lends form and meaning to the other one? Can the metaphors of the home country and the host country be applied? In what shapes and forms do mourning and haunting appear in these works ? How is self-(re-)creation set up and represented in the writing process?

Among the postcolonial writers who will be chosen by the contributors, it might be interesting to examine if there is anything specifically postcolonial in the way territories have shifted, almost as if a new diaspora of the self had been created.

'PoCoPages' is a new peer-reviewed series within the new collection Horizons anglophones published by the Presses universitaires de la Méditerranée (Pulm). It is a transformation of 'Les Carnets du Cerpac', which it will replace. Though the term Poco may stir up in the reader's mind images of some American country rock band, or again various possession rituals associated with Africa or the Caribbean, the reference here however is to the abbreviation of postcolonial. The term in its diversity is meant to reflect the interest of 'PoCoPages' for postcolonial, diasporic cultures and literatures, steeped in métissage and crossed borders.

General Editor : Dr Judith Misrahi-Barak.

This volume will be the second volume in the series (to be published in 2012). The first one, India and the Diasporic Imagination is forthcoming (Spring 2011). It will be the result of a collaboration between "EMMA" (Etudes Montpelliéraines du Monde Anglophone) at Université Paul-Valéry Montpellier 3, and "Centre Interlangues TIL" (Texte, Image, Langage) at Université de Bourgogne.

Please submit a 500-word abstract with a short bio by January 31, 2011 to Dr Mélanie Joseph-Vilain and to Dr Judith Misrahi-Barak . If the preliminary proposal is accepted, final essays (5,000 words) will be due by March 31, 2011.