CIDRAL Public Lecture: Bryan Cheyette (Reading), 'Beyond Ghettos of the Imagination: From Venice to L.A.'
|Starts:||17:00 18 Feb 2020|
|Ends:||19:00 18 Feb 2020|
|What is it:||Lecture|
|Organiser:||School of Arts, Languages and Cultures|
|Who is it for:||University staff, External researchers, Adults, Alumni, Current University students, General public, Post 16|
This event is part of CIDRAL's Public Intellectuals, Popularity and Populism programme.
Bryan Cheyette, Professor of English Literature, University of Reading, will deliver a public lecture entitled 'Beyond Ghettos of the Imagination: From Venice to L.A.'
"Ghetto" has layers of contradictory meanings accrued over half a millennium and a bewildering array of contexts across most of the world. The word "ghetto" is also surprisingly contentious. Is it a term of abuse or resistance; a way of understanding commonplace urbanisation or a unique form of racial segregation; is it a profound indication of how winners and losers are divided in the global metropolis or merely a superficial aspect of global culture (film, music, fashion)? Public intellectuals have long since argued these points.
My talk will trace the word ghetto—as both place and concept—across a wide range of histories. It will begin with three hundred years of ghettoization on the Italian peninsular followed by the nineteenth century imaginary ghetto; the urban ghetto; the Nazi genocide of Jews in Europe; black ghettos in American’s northern cities. It will end with the “global ghetto” or slums, townships and favela in the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America.
Interspersed with this cultural history will be a variety of intellectual “ghetto voices” from Israel Zangwill to James Baldwin and from WEB Du Bois to N.W.A.
Bryan Cheyette is Chair in Modern Literature and Culture at the University of Reading. He is the editor or author of ten books most recently Diasporas of the Mind: Jewish and Postcolonial Writing and the Nightmare of History (Yale UP, 2014), a Times Higher Book of the Year, and volume seven of the Oxford History of the Novel in English (Oxford UP, 2016). He writes regularly for the Times Literary Supplement and has written a very short introduction to the Ghetto for Oxford University Press which is out in 2020.
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