Archives mensuelles : février 2017

Appel à manuscrits : Nouvelle collection aux éditions Connaissances & Savoirs

Les éditions Connaissances & Savoirs lancent la collection Littératures non-occidentales, dirigée par Bénédicte Letellier et encadrée par un comité scientifique international. Elle accueille des essais, des ouvrages collectifs ou des thèses qui explorent la littérature à partir d’études comparées consacrées aux littératures non-occidentales. Elle vise à renouveler et à réinventer la littérature comparée en tant que discipline en la confrontant aux nouvelles questions générées à différentes échelles par le partage des savoirs, comme par exemple celles que posent la littérature mondiale et les littératures dites « alter-natives » ou bien encore comme toutes les questions épistémologiques et éthiques que pose la transdisciplinarité. Les littératures non-occidentales offrent un champ de réflexion déterminé par trois grandes perspectives comparatistes que cette collection entend privilégier : l’étude comparée de ces littératures, l’étude de leurs liens avec les littératures occidentales et l’étude de leurs implications interdisciplinaires.
Les soumissions doivent comprendre un descriptif de 3 pages, une table des matières, deux chapitres achevés et un curriculum vitae. Elles seront envoyées par voie électronique à Bénédicte Letellier, et à

Comité scientifique international : Jean Bessière (Université de la Sorbonne Nouvelle, France), E.V. Ramakrishnan (université Centrale du Gujarat, Inde), Longxi Zhang (City University of Hong-Kong, Chine), Isabel Hofmeyr (University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, Afrique du Sud), Hitoshi Oshima (Université de Fukuoka, Japon), Anders Pettersson (Umeå University, Suède), Lisa Block de Behar (Instituto de Profesores Artigas, Montevideo, Uruguay), Alexandre Stroev (Université de la Sorbonne Nouvelle, France).

The non-Western Literatures collection, supervised by an international scientific committee, welcomes essays, collective works or theses that explore literature from the perspective of comparative studies focusing on non-Western literatures. The collection aims at renewing and reinventing comparative literature studies as a discipline by confronting it with new questions arising from an increased sharing of knowledge, as evidenced by world literature and the so-called « alter-native » literatures or by all the epistemological and ethical questions raised by transdisciplinarity. Non-Western literatures offer a field of reflection determined by three main comparative perspectives that this collection intends to focus on: the comparative study of these literatures, the study of their links with Western literatures and the study of their implications for an interdisciplinary approach.
Submissions must include a 3-page description, a table of contents, two completed chapters and a curriculum vitae. They will be sent electronically to Bénédicte Letellier, and to

Scientific sharing: an Indian way of thinking about Comparative Literature (E.V. Ramakrishnan)

« Is There an Indian Way of Thinking about Comparative Literature? » E. V. Ramakrishnan argue in his paper (read it here) that Comparative Literature has to be reinvented in India. His question echoes that of A.K. Ramanujan who asked in 1989 about an Indian way of thinking (read his paper here). In the continuity of Ramanujan, he emphasizes the urgency to debate the question of « Indianness » and more precisely he questions « the very idea of India » as he puts it. As a discipline based on concern for the other, Comparative Literature in India can not ignore the plurality of Indian literary traditions and has to recognize that « Indian cannot be conceived merely in terms of nation or nation-state ». But Western modernity, imported by colonialism, favoured a thought free of any context and a standardization of theoretical categories such as the text or the reader. It has thus reinforced the eagerness to homogenize the Indian literature. E.V. Ramakrishnan gives us and compares some examples of bhasha literatures (Fakir Mohan Senapati, Vaikkom Muhammad Basheer) which are simultaneously the site of indigenous modernities as well as what Toni Morrison calls « the shareable imaginative worlds ». He concludes that « even when their modes and models came from outside they answered a need in the native socio-political context. » In the last issue of the Comparative Literature Review of 2015, Laetitia Zecchini ends her article on a similar conclusion: « G. N. Devy opposed two universal paradigms of knowledge: The figure of the « native » or « naive » (the one who is attached to his place and his land) and the figure of « picaro ». But like Kolatkar, who lived all his life in a room in Bombay, while bringing the whole world to him, first of all by books, these writers are rooted cosmopolitans, « naive picaros », who have chosen to fit into a transnational, even « improper » literary history, and to live in an open place, crossed by all the voices of the world. » (« Crisis in Literary History » ? Du « nativisme » et du provincialisme, et de quelques autres débats intellectuels en Inde », RLC, « Problèmes d’histoire littéraire indienne », 4-2015) Thus these Indian literatures reveal the emergence of alternative modernities or, to repeat the wordplay suggested in the title of a collective book edited by E.V. Ramakrishnan, Harish Trivedi and Chandra Mohan (Interdisciplinary alter-natives in Comparative Literature, 2013) « alter-native » modernities embodied by « naive picaros ». In this book, E.V. Ramakrishnan opens the discussion by recalling the need to reinvent Comparative Literature and to demystify the idea of literature. But, in a recent publication edited by M. Sridhar and Sunita Misra (Language Policy and Education in India: Documents, Texts and Debates, London and New York: Routledge, 2017) we can find an enlarged reflection on this issue which he entitled « Language, power and ideology: the changing contexts of bhasha in India ».

E.V.Ramakrishnan is a bilingual writer who has published poetry and literary criticism, in Malayalam, his first language and English. He is also a well-known translator. He has published three volumes of poetry in English: Being Elsewhere in Myself (1980), A Python in a Snake Park (1994), and Terms of Seeing: New and Selected Poems (2006). Among his critical books in English are Interdisciplinary Alter-natives in Comparative Literature (Co-edited, Sage, New Delhi, 2013), Locating Indian Literature: Texts, Traditions and Translations (Orient Blackswan, 2011) and Making It New: Modernism in Malayalam, Marathi and Hindi Poetry (IIAS, Shimla, 1995). He  is presently UGC Professor Emeritus at Central University of Gujarat, Gandhinagar, Gujarat. (Read his bio-note here).