UC Berkeley Comparative Literature Undergraduate Journal

A Premier Humanities Research Journal at the University of California, Berkeley

Vol. 1(1): Summer 2011

Table of Contents

A Note from the Editor-in-Chief

William S. Burroughs, the Beat Generation and Postmodernism, by Lisa Zettl

A literary analysis of postmodern elements constituted during the Beat Movement and especially in William S. Burroughs’ Naked Lunch with the focus on the evil of social control.

Insularismo y los Campos Intelectuales de la Época, de Chris Mendez

Insularismo (1934) de Antonio S. Pedreira (1898-1939) ha sido rigurosamente estudiado por innumerables intelectuales desde los años cuarenta y cincuenta. Sin embargo, la crítica no ha considerado cómo se situaba Insularismo dentro de los campos intelectuales de los años veinte y treinta. En este trabajo pondré Insularismo en conversación con el periodismo de los años veinte y treinta para mejor situar la obra en el contexto de debate en que fue escrita. Las tres publicaciones analizaré son La palabra (1935-1936), El nacionalista de Ponce/Puerto Rico (1924-1930) y Índice (1929-1931). Mientras que las últimas dos publicaciones pertenecen al campo intelectual partidista del Partido Nacionalista, tanto Insularismo como Índice son representantes del campo universitario sanjuanero que exponía un nacionalismo cultural que evitaba la política. El concepto de campo intelectual y su relación a Puerto Rico durante las décadas del veinte y treinta es relevante no sólo para aquellos interesados en la historia y literatura de Puerto Rico sino también para personas interesadas en la heterogeneidad interpretativa que rodea la constitución de un entendimiento de la nación.

Locating Virginia Woolf’s Critique of Imperialism through the Structural Gaps in The Waves, by Alexander Kwonji Rosenberg

In the last two decades, critics have tried to analyze the seductive but cryptic references to British imperialism in Virginia Woolf’s The Waves. I argue that through experimental narrative forms, Woolf explores the processes of empire-building, writing rhetoric, and creating stories. Her critique of imperialism surfaces in The Waves through the structures of the gaps that highlight the tensions between performative narratives, the rhetoric of imperialism, and the ways in which The Waves resists monologic and linear stories.

England’s Virgil:  Spenser and the Formation of the Ostensibly Elizabethan Epic
Joseph Muller

This paper discusses the emerging literary nationalism of Elizabethan England by exploring the close intertext of FQ 3.3 and Aeneid 6, in which Spenser equates Elizabeth I to Caesar Augustus and himself to Virgil, thereby contributing significantly to the “cult” of Elizabeth, to the validity of English as a literary language on par with Latin, and to the idea of the poet laureate.  It argues that Spenser’s synthesis of Virgilian narrative framework and surfaces from an idealized medieval England establishes a precedent for later poets seeking to capture “Englishness”—Romantics, at the very least, would define England in similar nostalgically medieval terms.

Muddying the Tea: The Locality of Haruki Murakami as Revealed through the Art of Translation, by Brooke Rappaport

       In 1987, a collection of several Murakami flash-fiction “opinion pieces,” originally published as short articles in the Asahi Shimbun newspaper, was released in book-format – despite never having been translated into any other language other than Japanese, this small book, titled Asahidō, seems to be the only Murakami work that deals specifically, and in rich detail, with his own, personal locality within Japan, and his opinions and criticisms of that locality. What would happen, then, if some of the Asahidō stories were translated into English? What would this add to the overall discussion of Haruki Murakami as a global writer – would anything change? How does translation lead to a better understanding of a writer, and why is that important for the study of global literature?

National Identity in the Egyptian Post-modernist Story, by Gemma Juan-Simo

 Like the novel in Western societies, the Short-story has emerged in the modern Egyptian context as an evocative articulation of the construct of the Egyptian national spirit. Most importantly, it is an expression of the Egyptian nation’s self-perception as authored by itself – that is, by Egyptian individuals – who, in penning their own image, also actively construct and appropriate it. It is this very image that is, then, perused and excogitated in this thesis, in order to ascertain some of the themes and elements that preoccupy the Egyptian national consciousness of post-1967. Indeed, whether or not this national consciousness exists outside of this medium and the imagination of its creators is not in the immediate scope of this essay; the concern herein is strictly to delineate some of the founding components of Egyptian national identity that inform this literature.

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