MetFridays—Dangerous Beauty: Medusa in Classical Art: Gillian Alban

During this talk at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gillian Alban presents her book: The Medusa Gaze in Contemporary Women’s Fiction: Petrifying, Maternal and Redemptive – a vindication of the oft-maligned Medusa character. Through her writing and speech, Alban offers multiple interpretations of Medusa, enabling us to view her as a multidimensional character rather than an archetype. The ‘Gorgon’ is reclaimed as a warrior woman with a “defiant gaze”, a mother, an empowered victim (as opposed to a villain), a force of healing as well as harming and perhaps even a feminist icon. Importantly, she is the subject, not the object.

To use Alban’s concept of the apotropaic ‘mirror gaze’ (which she explains much better than here in the video below) she uses Medusa as a looking glass: Medusa’s gaze reflects far more poorly upon the fragile masculinities and objectifying tendencies that persist in ancient historical and contemporary thought than Medusa herself. In doing so, Alban  also uses her as an apt allegory for the vilification of women today: whereby women that pose a threat to the established order are both incriminated and stripped of their agency in the dominant patriarchal narrative.

As an antidote to these narratives, please click below to see Gillian Alban herself presenting a far more nuanced portrayal:

The Medusa Gaze is now available to purchase at the Cambridge Scholars website, for more information please click here.


Richard Pine discusses popular literature and his new book in The Irish Times

Richard Pine, author of the recently released Minor Mythologies in Popular Literature: A Student’s Guide to Texts and Films, has this weekend written an article for The Irish Times discussing the key themes of the book, and why we should not turn up our noses at popular or non-highbrow fiction.

The article can be read in full here.

Minor Mythologies in Popular Literature: A Student’s Guide to Texts and Films is available directly from Cambridge Scholars now, and can be purchased by clicking here.

Professor Craig Smith discusses his new book (among other things) at the Motivation Report

Professor Craig Smith has been interviewed on the Motivation Report about his new book, voting, and numerous other topics. To listen, please click here.

Craig’s book Romanticism, Rhetoric and the Search for the Sublime: A Neo-Romantic Theory for Our Time is available to order now. Please use the discount code SUBLIME20 to receive a 20% discount when ordering directly from our website here.

Meet our Authors – Despoina N. Feleki

Despoina N. Feleki is an independent researcher and appointed English Educator in Greece. She holds a PhD in Contemporary American Studies and an MA in Studies in European Literature and Culture. She lectures on the intersections between textuality and digitality, and how these affect literary and educational practices.  Her latest scientific interests revolve around contemporary Anglophone fiction, new media studies and popular cultural productions, investigating their effect on both readers’ and learners’ consciousness. Feleki presents her research in national and international conferences and is a regular review contributor to the online European Journal of American Studies. Her published articles have also appeared in numerous academic journals. Continue reading

Book of the Month – August 2018

Our August Book of the Month is Intercultural Geopoetics in Kenneth White’s Open World by Mohammed Hashas.

Geopoetics is a movement and creative project concerned with reconnecting human beings to the natural world and reinvigorating our understanding of the spaces and places in which we dwell. Largely associated with the Scottish poet Kenneth White and his Scottish Centre for Geopoetics, this project has spawned a vast, interdisciplinary body of scholarship that draws upon science, philosophy, and literary theory to push the latent possibilities of our relationship with the earth, and with each other.

Amongst this scholarship, Hashas’ book stands out as a landmark contribution. Hashas not only provides a critical overview and analysis of geopoetics, but also shows how White’s writing points us towards a more harmonious, fulfilling future. In the words of Elizabeth Rimmer, poet and member of White’s Scottish Centre for Geopoetics, the book is no less than “the book we have been waiting for; a template for taking geopoetics further.”

0546298_intercultural-geopoetics-in-kenneth-whites-open-world_300This work introduces Kenneth White’s geopoetics as a radical, postmodern interdisciplinary and intercultural project that reclaims the return to communication with the earth, nature, wo-man, and the self as part of a cosmic unity approach. It traces geopoetics’ beginnings, key concepts, territories and trajectories, aims, and perspectives. Geopoetics is shown here to be a cosmopolitan project for a more open and harmonious world, which buries narrow-mindedness and offers new horizons.

To find out more, please click here to read a sample extract and contents page.

We are offering all of our readers a generous 60% discount on this book throughout August. To redeem your discount, please enter the promotional code BOMAUG18 during checkout. Please note that this is a time-limited offer that will expire on 1st September 2018.

Please see below for highlights of the praise this book has been receiving from academics, journalists, and government officials alike:

“Hashas’ reading of Kenneth White’s project is a worthwhile contribution to laying the foundation for a better understanding between cultures, namely the Arab-Islamic culture and Western culture.”
–Khalid Hajji, President of the Brussels Forum of Wisdom and World Peace

“White’s geopoetics deserves our attention in this hasty world that is losing values, connectedness, and humanness, and Hashas renders us this service intelligently in this work.”
–Francesca M. Corrao, Professor of Arabic Language and Culture, LUISS Guido Carli University, Rome

“Kenneth White’s exploration of Arabic culture has been less developed than that of Asia and of the Inuit in the West. Hashas, who has been initiated to geopoetics by a former student of Kenneth White, seems naturally destined to pursue the path of the Poet and Thinker as developed also by the International Institute of Geopoetics.”
–Michèle Duclos, Retired Senior Lecturer, Bordeaux Montaigne University, France; author of Kenneth White, nomade intellectual, poète du monde (2006).

“Enthusiasts of White’s ground-breaking synthesis of science, philosophy and poetry have long felt the need of a thorough academic structural outline of his thinking that would not only serve as a commentary on White’s oeuvre, but also provide a template for taking geopoetics further. In Intercultural Geopoetics, Mohammed Hashas has written the book we have been waiting for; it is a considerable achievement.”
–Elizabeth Rimmer, poet and member of the Scottish Centre for Geopoetics

“Intercultural Geopoetics in Kenneth White’s Open World represents a valuable contribution to the study of space, intersecting in a homogeneous and harmonious way the different literary, philosophical and geocultural perspectives that a meticulous study of geopoetics requires.”
–Simone Sibilio, Reset, 30/01/2018

Book Review: Radical Contra-Diction: Coleridge, Revolution, Apostasy

Björn Bosserhoff’s book Radical Contra-Diction: Coleridge, Revolution, Apostasy, published in 2016 with Cambridge Scholars Publishing, has been reviewed by Katy Beavers from the School of Health Sciences, City, University of London. The review is not available online, but an indicative excerpt is below:

“Bosserhof concludes that Coleridge’s attempts to rewrite his own past were to counter the charges of apostasy made against him by critics such as Hazlitt. He notes that Coleridge was keen to take the chances presented to him to publicly renounce his former youthful opinions. Of course, Coleridge’s later apostasy was largely unsuccessful—people remembered his earlier views—and his public recantations did nothing to change the minds of those who knew him (such as Hazlitt). Bosserhof’s Radical Contra-diction includes a number of colour illustrations, including portraits of Coleridge and Southey among other works related to the Revolution. In all, Bosserhof’s study sheds new light on a decisive period in Coleridge’s life and thought.”

The book can be purchased directly from Cambridge Scholars by clicking here.