Call For Papers
Articles, books for review, images should be sent to the editors and cc to email@example.com.
All material submitted for consideration must comply with the Anglistica guidelines.
Representing, Disseminating, and Debating Controversial Bioethical Issues in Literature and Popularised Discourse
Editors: Roxanne Doerr, Giuseppe De Riso and Giuliana Garzone
This special issue focuses on the linguistic and discursive aspects of the dissemination of knowledge about sensitive and hitherto unforeseen bioethical issues, an area at the intersection between scientific discourse (e.g. medicine, biotechnology, genetics, environmental sciences) and other forms of specialised and professional legal, economic, political, religious discourse. Today, bioethical issues are at the centre of political, legal, and cultural debates (Capron 1993; Menikoff 2001; Rehmann-Sutter, Düwell and Mieth 2006) at a global level. These, in turn, have an important impact on individuals’ and communities’ lives and culture, being strictly connected with human rights and fundamental freedoms (Gordon 2012). Such debates involve complex fields and contested issues (e.g. surrogacy, abortion, genetic manipulation, cloning, euthanasia, cryopreservation, performance enhancement) in which people fear that the application of new scientific experiments and findings could impinge on human rights and the dignity of - and responsibility for - birth, illness, performance, privacy, personhood and death, as well as the integrity and well-being of the environment.
While there is an extensive body of research on bioethics in law, morality and popular culture (Schneider 1996; Hedgecoe 2010), much remains to be investigated and codified regarding the literary, linguistic and discursive strategies that are employed in ‘translating’ and framing specialised bioethical notions, terms and debates within literary, journalistic, online, promotional, corporate and legal texts and media coverage. Contributions taking any approach in literary theory, linguistics and discourse analysis (Cultural and Postcolonial Studies, Genres and register analysis, Critical discourse analysis, Communication and media language studies, Integrated corpus assisted discourse analysis, Argumentation theory and rhetoric) are welcome.
Possible areas of qualitative and quantitative inquiry include - but are not limited - to:
- Representations of biological and medical procedures as strategies of political control and regulation in anglophone and postcolonial literatures - Linguistic and discursive transformations and popularised translations undergone by sensitive knowledge in the dissemination process (Garzone 2006)
- Interdiscursivity and genre hybridization in popular, journalistic and corporate communication about controversial bioethical issues (e.g. surrogacy, abortion, genetic manipulation, cloning, cryopreservation)
- Traditional and online new(s) media coverage of bioethical issues and high profile cases (e.g. euthanasia, Artificial Reproduction Technologies, performance enhancement in medicine and sports)
- Discursive construction, in professional guidelines and in professional discourse, of the four principles (Autonomy, Beneficence, Non-maleficence, Justice), originally introduced by Beauchamp and Childress (1979/2001) that still predominate – at least professedly – in medical ethics (Page 2012)
- Representation and support of controversial bioethical themes pertaining to the domains of medicine, genetics and biotechnology, conservation discourses about sustainability and environment
Pre-fixing the Colonial: Theory and Practice
Editors: Marta Cariello, Luigi Cazzato and Luisa Pèrcopo
Prefixes have always been cause for controversy when it comes to colonialism. On one hand, the “post” in “postcolonial” has famously sparked debate about temporalities and epistemology; on the other, a growing school of thought claims that turning to the term “decolonial” would disambiguate the content and reach deeper into the power relations at play.
Postcolonial theory is often considered as reaching back to Edward Said’s pioneering critical work while decolonial theory is a critical disposition that started with the works of Anibal Quijano and Enrique Dussel. Postcolonial studies was born within the nexus connecting the Subaltern Studies Group in India with Anglo America (Said-Spivak-Bhabha), while the “decolonial option” was born thanks to the Latin American Subaltern Studies Group scholars in the USA. These (albeit most likely unfixed) points of origin explain the different stress placed on Western colonial history. If, within postcolonial thinking, colonial history mainly starts sometime between the 17th and the 18th centuries, when Orientalism was initially born as a discipline – though, for example, Paul Gilroy, Arjun Appadurai and Janet Abu-Lughod speak of much wider temporalities – for decolonial thinkers, that history starts with the conquest of the “New World” and, as Quijano puts it, the rise of the “coloniality of power”. The choice of point of origin is crucial because it highlights the historical moment when modern European identity emerged and constructed the Other of Europe.
However, the dividing lines between postcolonial and decolonial theories/thinking are quite blurry and overlapping, and this in itself is an issue for debates. For instance Dipesh Chakrabarty proposes a frame to decolonise world knowledge from a Eurocentric perspective, Walter Mignolo to delink from it and search not for a new paradigm but for an alternative one: un pensamiento otro. How does the common ground between both epistemological fields interrogate us? How can we articulate another thinking entirely, pre-fixed, post-fixed, but certainly not fixed?
We invite scholars from the fields of postcolonial and decolonial thought, literary and cultural studies, visual and performing/ance arts, history, gender studies, diaspora studies, media studies, critical race theory, and all related and transdisciplinary areas, to join in the conversation and submit an abstract.
Proposals may deal with the following (or further related) topics:
⎯ postcolonial and decolonial genealogies
⎯ decolonizing theory and language
⎯ decolonizing the academia
⎯ decolonizing the literary canon
⎯ the postcolonial/decolonial public intellectual
⎯ art as critical language overcoming theory (and prefixes)
⎯ colonial and imperial difference
⎯ colonial discursive formations
– coloniality and (new) media studies
⎯ coloniality and race/class/gender/religion
⎯ coloniality and migrations
⎯ coloniality and human rights.