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- ItemTwo-spirit identities in Canada: Mapping sovereign erotic in Joshua Whitehead’s "Jonny Appleseed"(2020) Siepak, JuliaIn colonial times, mapping the New World functioned as an inherent mechanism of exerting colonial domination over Indigenous lands, enacting settler presence on these territories. While the colonial cartographies projected ownership, the non-normative mappings emerging from Aboriginal writing provide an alternative to settler Canadian geography. This article focuses on the imaginative geographies depicted in Joshua Whitehead’s Jonny Appleseed (2018), which recounts the story of a young Two-Spirit man who searches for his identity in-between the reserve and the city. The objective of the analysis is to tie the representation of the contemporary queer Indigenous condition with the alternative mappings emerging from Whitehead’s novel. In order to address the contemporary Two-Spirit condition in Canada, the article applies current theories proposed by the field of queer Indigenous studies, including the concept of sovereign erotic, which further allows the presentation of the potential of Two-Spirit bodies to transgress colonial cartographies.
- ItemImperial (s)kin: The orthography of the wake in Esi Edugyan’s "Washington Black"(2020) Šlapkauskaitė, RūtaThe publication of Esi Edugyan’s Washington Black has placed the novel among other works of history and art, which recall the material and epistemic violence of institutional racism and the lasting trauma of its legacy. Thus by interlacing, within the context of black critical theory, Yogita Goyal’s and Laura T. Murphy’s examining of the neo-slave narrative with Christina Sharpe’s conceptualization of the wake and Alexander G. Weheliye’s notion of habeas viscus as critical frames for the discussion of racialized subjectivity, I consider how Edugyan’s use of the conventions of Victorian adventure literature and the slave narrative rethinks the entanglements between the imperial commodification of life and the scientific agenda of natural history. Given how the narrative emphasizes the somatic register and its epidermal terms as a scene of meaning, I bring together Frantz Fanon’s idea of epidermalization, Steven Connor’s phenomenological reading of the skin, and Calvin L. Warren’s reasoning about blackness in an attempt to highlight the metalepsis resulting from the novel’s use of the hot air-balloon and the octopus as dermatropes that cast the empire as simultaneously a dysfunctional family and a scientific laboratory. Loaded into the skin as a master trope is the conceptual cross-over between consciousness and conscience, whose narrative performance in the novel nourishes the affective labour of its reader as an agent of memory.
- ItemTaking root in floating cities – space, environment, and immigrant identity in Kerri Sakamoto’s "Floating City"(2020) Antoniak, JoannaHuman identity is shaped not only by culture, but also by nature – the environment in which people grow up and live, the places and spaces they visit, work in, and pass on an everyday basis. This people-place bond is particularly important in case of immigrants who are forced to abandon the places they know for a new – and often hostile – environment. This connection between space, environment, and immigrant identity is explored by Kerri Sakamoto, a Japanese-Canadian writer, in her newest novel, Floating City (2018). Focusing on the family narrative of the Hanesakas – and, in particular, the story of Frankie, the oldest son of the family – Sakamoto tells the story of shaping identity through forming a connection with the environment and architecture. The aim of this article is to discuss the way in which Sakamoto presents the people-place bond and its impact on immigrant identity as represented by the connection of the Japanese-Canadians with four elements: water, air, earth, and fire. Furthermore, the article analyses Sakamoto’s version of an alternative history of Toronto and the possible solutions to the current environmental crisis it brings. For this purpose, the author uses a mixture of methodological concepts stemming from postcolonial theory and environmental psychology, such as homing desire, rootlessness, place attachment, non-place, and the people-place bond.