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Seminar 2023/2024

VOICE: Sound, Technology, and Performance
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Center for Cultural Analysis (CCA)

Françoise Lionnet


From: Wednesday, February 24, 2016, 01:30pm

To: Wednesday, February 24, 2016, 04:30pm

4d1 LionnettThe Indian Ocean has always been the most “global” of all oceans. The oldest in human history, it has enabled contact among travelers, scholars, and merchants of the most diverse origins for more than 5000 years. It figures in a sizable corpus of travel narratives and other literary genres that have influenced the direction of European literary movements from the eighteenth century to the present. Yet it remains, among US-based humanists, the least studied of the large bodies of water that link continents, archipelagos, and their inhabitants.

Today, it is the site of a migrant crisis that is completely invisible to the West, but that writers evoke powerfully in their poetic texts. My goal is to discuss two artists from the region’s multilingual archipelagos: Sœuf Elbadawi from the Comoros and Shenaz Patel from the Mascarenes.

Guest Biography
Françoise Lionnet is Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures and African and African American Studies at Harvard University. In 2012, she published her most recent work, a two-volume study of the literature and culture of the Mascarene Islands titled Writing Women and Critical Dialogues: Subjectivity, Gender and Irony and The Known and the Uncertain: Creole Cosmopolitics of the Indian Ocean. Her research focuses primarily on Indian Ocean literary, cultural, and historical studies in relation to Atlantic and Caribbean Studies. She is currently editing a translation of the writings of Evariste Parny, an eighteenth-century Creole poet from Reunion Island, and she is working on a comparative study of creolization and world literature titled The Indies, Otherwise.


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