Cultural Hybridity in Central-Eastern Europe (COMPLIT 231B, SLAVIC 360)
Historically shaped by shifting borders and mixing of various cultures and languages, identities in-between have been in abundance in Central-Eastern Europe. This course offers a comprehensive study of the oeuvre of several major Central-European authors of modernity: the Ukrainian-Russian Nikolai Gogol (1809-1852), the Czech-German-Jewish Franz Kafka (1883-1924), the Austrian-Galician-Jewish Leopold von Sacher-Masoch (1836-1895), the Ukrainian-Galician Olha Kobylyans¿ka (1863-1942), the Russian-German Lou Andreas-Salomé (1861-1937), the Jewish-Polish-Galician Bruno Schulz (1892-1942), and the Polish-Argentinean Witold Gombrowicz (1904-1969). Performing their selves in two or more cultures, these writers were engaged in identity games and produced hybrid texts with which they intervened into the major culture as others. In the course, we will apply post-structuralist and post-colonial concepts such as minor language, heterotopia, in-betweenness, mimicry, indeterminacy, exile, displacement, and transnationalism to the study of the writers oeuvres. We will also master the sociolinguistic analysis of such multi-lingual phenomena as self-translation, code-switching, and calquing and examine various versions of the same text to uncover the palimpsest of hybrid identities.