Caryl Phillips’s Genealogies


Caryl Phillips’s Genealogies
Brill, Leiden, Pays-Bas
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Active since 1990, Cross/Cultures covers the whole range of the colonial and post-colonial experience across the English-speaking world as well as the literatures and cultures of non-anglophone countries. The series accomodates both studies by single authors and edited critical collections.




Series : Cross/Cultures, Volume 220


Thematically and structurally, the work of the Kittitian-British writer Caryl Phillips reimagines the notion of genealogy. Phillips’s fiction, drama, and non-fiction foreground broken filiations and forever-deferred promises of new affiliations in the aftermath of slavery and colonization. His texts are also in dialogue with multiple historical figures and literary influences, imagining around the life of the African American comedian Bert Williams and the Caribbean writer Jean Rhys, or retelling the story of Othello. Additionally, Phillips’s work resonates with that of other writers and visual artists, such as Derek Walcott, Toni Morrison, or Isaac Julien. Written to honor the career of renown Phillipsian scholar Bénédicte Ledent, the contributions to this volume, including one by Phillips himself, explore the multiple ramifications of genealogy, across and beyond Phillips’s work. 


Table of Contents

Foreword : The Paper Woman
         Caryl Phillips
         pp. IX

Notes on Contributors
         Delphine Munos, Evelyn O'Callaghan, and Mathilde Mergeai (view here :
         pp. 13-35 

Introduction : Reading ‘Caz’ through, and with, ‘Béné’ 
         Delphine Munos and Evelyn O'Callaghan  (view here :
         pp. 1-18

*** PART 1 - Parrallel Genealogies ***

Chapter 1 The Space of Crossing -
Caryl Phillips, Jenny Erpenbeck, and Parallel Genealogy 
         Stephen Clingman
         pp. 21-41

Chapter 2 “My Foolish Voice” - Voice and Alterity in the Fiction of Caryl Phillips and Rus-Val
         Kathie Birat
         pp. 42-62

*** PART 2 - Intellectual Genealogies ***

Chapter 3 Dialogues with History - An Existentialist Reading of Caryl Phillips’s Rough Crossings
        Kerry–Jane Wallart
        pp. 65-83

Chapter 4 A Genealogy of the Recognition of Blackness in Caryl Phillips’s Cambridge and Foreigners: Three English Lives
         Malica S. Willie
         pp. 84-100

Chapter 5 Autogenealogies - Caryl Phillips, Isaac Julien, and the Invention of Self
         Louise Yelin
         pp. 101-125

Chapter 6 Translating Caryl Phillips - Downriver Genealogies 
         Christine Pagnoulle (view here :
         pp. 126-146

*** PART 3 - Gender ***

Chapter 7 European vs. African Gendered Genealogies - Revisiting Othello in Caryl Phillips’s The Nature of Blood and Toni Morrison’s Desdemona
        Pilar Cuder–Domínguez
        pp. 149-166

Chapter 8 Putting His Words in Her Mouth? - Caryl Phillips’s Women Characters
         Evelyn O’Callaghan
         pp. 167-185

Chapter 9 Cross-sexing the River and Messing with Order - A Queer Reading of Caryl Phillips’s In the Falling Snow
         Bastien Bomans (view here :
         pp. 186-206

*** PART 4 - Cinema and Radio Plays ***

Chapter 10 A Caribbean Voice - The Radio’s Legacy in Caryl Phillips’s Work
        Carine Mardorossian
        pp. 209-225

Chapter 11 Formal Innovation and Cinematic Imagination in Caryl Phillips’s Dancing in the Dark
         Su Ping
         pp. 226-242

*** PART 5 - Short Texts ***

Chapter 12 The Gentle Strength of Literary Appreciation - Critical Attention in Bénédicte Ledent’s Readings of Caryl Phillips 
        Alison Donnell
        pp. 245-250

Chapter 13 Luminary of the Liège Legacy - A eULogy4.béné
         Peter H. Marsden
         pp. 251-254

Chapter 14 A Bulwark against Intolerance and Hospitality as Praxis -  A Few Scattered Notes on Caryl Phillips and Bénédicte Ledent
         Maria Cristina Fumagalli
         pp. 255-259

Chapter 15 A View of the Empress at Sunset - A (Not-So-Cheeky) Tribute to Bénédicte Ledent 
         Marie Herbillon (view here :
         pp. 260-262

Chapter 16 A Letter to Béné
        Marc Delrez (view here :
         pp. 263-265



Volume Editors :

  • Delphine Munos (PhD, University of Liège) is Senior Lecturer in Postcolonial Literatures at the University of Liège. She held FRS-FNRS and Humboldt postdoctoral fellowships. Her research interests include postcolonial literatures, memory studies, affect theory and narrative studies. She has published on Anglophone postcolonial literatures and US ethnic literatures.
  • Evelyn O’Callaghan (PhD, University of the West Indies) is Emeritus Professor of West Indian Literature, University of the West Indies. She has published on West Indian literature, particularly on women’s writing, early Caribbean narratives, madness, and ecocritical readings of Caribbean landscapes in visual and scribal texts.
  • Mathilde Mergeai (PhD, University of Liège) currently teaches English and Translation at the University of Liège. She has published on postcolonial Caribbean and Black Canadian literatures. Her research interests include postcolonial literatures, space in literature, and power relations in translation studies.  

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