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Beyond Text: Anthopological Approaches to Literature in Europe and the Middle East

Orientální ústav srdečně zve na mezinárodní workshop "Beyond Text: Anthopological Approaches to Literature in Europe and the Middle East", který se koná 18.-19. října 2019 v Akademickém centru Husova (Husova 4a, Praha 1) v rámci programu Strategie AV21. Program zde.

What is the role of literary imagination for social, political, and religious change? In this workshop, we seek to expand our view of literature beyond literary text, and explore practices of writing, publishing, reading, and literary socialization. Anthropological and other social scientific study of literature is a small but emerging field that allows to understand the relationship between human subjectivities and social processes in a way that text-based approaches alone cannot. Writers reflecting about their work as well as anthropologists, historians and scholars of literature working with fieldwork and archival methodologies, have stressed the importance of non-literary objects in understanding literature, such as coffee houses, political movements and revolutionary contexts, the motivations and personal consequences of writing, the learning and teaching of techniques, the relationship of aesthetics, class, morals and gender, and exiles and migrations. Some of these topics have been studied historically but until recently, less so in the contemporary context. This workshop aims to explore the state of the art in the emerging study of literature as a social practice, and to push it forward in terms of both content and methodology. Importantly, it takes a decidedly trans-local approach, and gives special – but not exclusive – attention to literatures in and from the Middle East and Central Europe. An understanding of the role literature plays in these regions is especially important in the context of globalization and migrations, whereby literature has proven to be an important medium to communicate experiences, hopes and fear across cultural divides.

10. 10. 2019