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Friday, September 30, 2011

Literature and philosophy notes - 28th sept. 2011

Seminar on "Knowledge Dissemination Through Journal Publications"

The Seminar on "knowledge Dissemination Through Journal Publication" held on 28th September 2011 mainly dealt with issues related to research and journal publication in various academic domains. Following are the some of the important insights shared by the paper presenters.

What are the main criteria to consider the internationality of a journal?

Ø  Publication language

Ø  Inclusion in international data base

Ø  Multilingual distribution of the editorial board members

Ø  Multinational distribution of articles

Ø  Online access:One of the ways to increase the visibility factor of a journal is to include foreign experts. In recent time there is a sharp increase in the visibility of research from the third world countries.

What are the some of the key issues in writing a research paper and publishing it?

Ø  To know the problem that is researched on

Ø  The role played by the university or the institution

Ø  Issues faced by the researchers in publishing their work

Ø  Too much work load in the college

Ø  Domestic responsibility (Female researchers)

Ø  Fees for the publication

Interdisciplinary research and challenges of publications

Ø  Finding an advisor

Ø  Mastery over both the disciplines

Ø  Reconciling conflicts

Ø  Finding an intellectual community

Ø  Purpose of interdisciplinary approach – complex nature of the society

Class room discussion

There were serious concerns raised regarding the quality of the papers presented.

Irrespective of the quality of the paper and the presentation skills exhibited by the scholars it is important to look at whether there is any insight given by each paper.  It is the insight presented that will determine the quality of the paper. In terms of the insight each paper had one or other insight to contribute to the audience. For example the paper on Research and Publication on Hotel management gave the valuable insight that there are no post graduate courses offered in this domain in India. It is really a valuable and interesting insight. In such a situation researching in such field is really a challenge.  In fact there is no academic research happening in this field.

Prepared by Vipin George


"Knowledge Dissemnation Through JournalPublications." Christ University. 28 Sept. 2011. Conference
Pinto, Anil. Literature and Philosophy. Christ University. 28 Sept.2011. Lecture.
Zima, Peter. The Philosophy of Modern Literary Theory. New Jersey: The Athlone Press, 1999. Print.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Literature and philosophy notes- 26th Monday -2011

Literature and Philosophy

The class discussed the second chapter of Peter Zima’s The Philosophy of Modern Literary Theory. The particular chapter deals with the Kantian components in Anglo-American New Criticism and Russian Formalism.

The historical conditions which caused the birth of New Criticism and Formalism are traced out.  ‘Text-only’ methodology of New Criticism proposed by I.A. Richards was seen as an impact of the historical conditions of the then contemporary society. Poetic analysis was the only possible way for I.A Richards to establish the methodology of New Criticism in the overcrowded classrooms. In fact this insight explains the argument that the socio-political conditions of the society are ingrained in philosophy.

Although the two literary theories belong to different countries, both primarily placed ‘expression plane’ as more important than ‘content plane.’ It is the Kantian philosophy which asserts the autonomy of art through ‘expression plane’ and hence it cannot be reduced to socio-historical content.

The section titled “Abortive dialogue between Marxists and Formalists” is discussed in detail. Marxists were interested in the ‘ideological contexts of literary texts.’ On the other hand, Formalists primarily looked at the question of how literary texts are made and completely neglected the social set up and political aims it articulates. Paul Medvedev        relates the formalist ‘how’ with the Marxist ‘why’ and ‘what’ (as qtd. in The Philosophy of Modern Literary Theory). But the Formalists were prevented from a further dialogue with Marxists for political reasons in 1920s and 1930s and the ‘aborted dialogue’ turned to a dialogue in the 1970s.

An introduction to the third chapter is given in the class. Like the Formalists, Structuralists were also Kantian and followers of avant garde. They looked primarily at the ‘expression plane’ and defied conceptual definition. Here the class got into the discussion of ‘monosemy’ and ‘polysemy.’ Polysemy of the expression plane (signifier) and monosemy of the conceptual plane (signified) are thus introduced into the class. Different ways to evoke the same concept explain the monosemy of the ‘conceptual plane.’

The Hegelian elements in Mukarovsky are discussed in the class. The historical conception of art and the sociological idea that art can have an impact on a society’s system of values and norms are incompatible with Kantian stance. This also raises a challenge to Kantian stance of ‘disinterested pleasure.’ In the class ‘Semantic gesture’ of Mukarovsky is explained with European music which works purely through sound.  

The six functions of language which were identified by Roman Jakobson are discussed in detail. Any literary text can thus be read on an ‘emotive’, ‘conative’ or any other functions of language. This reveals the fact that literary text contains other functions which cannot be reduced to the poetic component. This is yet again incompatible with the Kantian stance.

The class left with the insight that much of the issues around translation studies owe its origin from Kantian philosophical stance.


Works Cited:

Pinto, Anil. “Class on Anglo-American New Criticism and Russian Formalism.” Christ

          University. Bangalore. 26 Oct. 2011. Lecture.

Zima, Peter V. The Philosophy of Modern Literary Theory. New Jersey: The Athlone 

           Press, 1999. Print.
Prepared by sharon Abraham

Sunday, September 25, 2011

UbuWeb: Papers

UbuWeb: Papers

Literature and Philosophy class notes: 24th sept. 2011

Terry Eagleton’s ‘What is Literature?’ provides us with various definitions of literature which have been made. Eagleton considers the different ways in which literature has been defined previously and describes them in detail, after which he demonstrates where and how these definition are lacking. The essay ends with Eagleton providing his own definition of literature, which after reflecting on what has been stated before, appears all encompassing.

After a critical reading of the essay in class, it is concluded that the essay is a critique of the historical definitions of literature by Eagleton who refutes all previous definitions before introducing his own.

The second essay dealt with was by Peter Burger’s ‘On the Problem of the Autonomy of Art in Bourgeois Society’. Burger defines the autonomy of art and explains how art and the artist is affected by social changes- from the early 16th century to the 18th century where art is redefined by Kant and Schiller. Burger describes the autonomy of art as a category of bourgeois society which is detached from the context of practical life. The status of art in bourgeois society is attacked by the Avant-Garde who did not like that art as an institution was disassociated with the praxis of life and believed that it must be integrated into the praxis of life.

The discussion of the essay centered on- the Avant-Garde trying to abolish the autonomy of art; that they wanted the pleasure of everyday life to be integrated; and that art was not about the object but about the social function.

In the course fo  discussion, three key aspects of research were described: the concepts, the framework and how one must write research.

Prepared by Naomi Eapen.

Ankita Khanna: Call for Research Papers

Ankita Khanna: Call for Research Papers: Biographies and Autobiographies occupy an important place in Literature for various reasons. Authors used this genre to communicate their w...

Philosophy and Literature class notes- 23rd friday 2011.

Ø  The discussion of the class centred around the essay “The Philosophical and Aesthetic Foundations of Literary Theories” by Peter V. Zima which revolve around the conceptualisation of the art and literature which Zima tries to explain through the content and expression plane. 

Ø  According to Saussure the signifier is the phonetic sound which for Louis Hjelmslev is the expression plane, and the signified which Saussure explains as the realm of ideas and concepts or the phonetic image, is the content plain for Hjelmslev.

Ø  Kant in discussing aesthetic and concepts argues that it is the concept which people give to the world. But aesthetic is opposite. It suggests that the object is what is giving pleasure to the people. In other words by aesthetic he means that the world is effecting an individual. Keeping this in mind, Zima through his essay is saying that Saussure’s understanding of the relationship between signifier and the signified is comparable to Kant’s dualist theory of knowledge and in particular to his dualist view of the relationship between conceptual and aesthetic cognition. Therefore Kant’s idea of concept and aesthetic is based on Saussure’s understanding of the signifier and the signified which is expression and content plane for Hjelmslev.

Ø  Most discussion on art centres around Kant and Hegel. Kant argues that the aesthetic cannot be conceptualised. He emphasises that aesthetic object should be autonomous. The autonomy of art are strongly opposed to the idea of reducing literature to heteronomous factors such as the author’s biography, the social context or the reactions of the readers or the historical context, etc. To understand Kant, Zima gives example of Saussure- that how he (Saussure) considers the relationship between the signifier and the signified arbitrary. The essayist leaves out an important theorist in this realm, Roland Barthes. If for Saussure the relation between signifier and signified is arbitrary, the same signifier and the signified for Barthes meets in the realm of the myth which he explicitly explains in the essay “Myth Today.” 

Ø  In opposition to Kant’s division of the aesthetic and conceptual, Hegel says that every work of art is conceptual. Hegel uses the word ‘Zeitgeist’ which means the spirit of time. This is also the idea of history. It is very interesting to note that history is born with Hegel. He says that every time has a spirit i.e. the spirit of its own time. It is this spirit of the time which makes history and it is the same spirit of time which is expressed in the literary text. It is because it expresses the spirit of time, art for that matter can be conceptualised. For Hegel any work of art cannot be located beyond the conceptual domain because it expresses a historical consciousness.

Pinto, Anil. Literature and Philosophy. Christ University. 23 Sept. 2011. Lecture.
Zima, Peter. The Philosophy of Modern Literary Theory. New Jersey: The Athlone Press, 1999. Print.

Prepared by: Ipshita Sarkar

Journals on English Literature and Linguistics outside India

This particular post lists journals in  literature and Linguistics  outside India. This separate category is necessitated by the recent practice by UGC and higher education institutions in India to give more weight for publications in Journals outside India. Readers of the this blog are requested to suggest titles of journals in these domains for this post. You may put the names and details of the journals in the comment section below this post. Please provide the ISSN number, website, if any, and mention if you are aware, if it is a peer reviewed/refereed journal or not.

1. Click here for journals on Commonwealth Literature recommended by ACLLS

2Journal of NELTA:  peer-reviewed
    Website:  http://neltajournal.

3. Click here for Journals on Postcolonial Literatrues

For the list on Journals in literature in linguistics published from India, click here

TJELLS: Call for Papers

TJELLS is a peer-reviewed, international, quarterly journal,published in March, June, September and December. 

Each issue features a collection of scholarly interpretive criticism on literary works in English, ELT, and Translation Studies. Creative poems, short Stories, essays, excerpts from thesis, and book reviews also can be published here. TJELLS provides free on-line open access to all those involved in research or teaching. It intends to provide a platform for publication of articles from academics, teachers, and scholars.

Submissions are accepted throughout the year. All articles will be peer-reviewed by international scholars and will be published only on acceptance.

For more details, please visit

B.Beneson Thilagar Christadoss
Assistant Professor of English, St.John's College, Palayankottai, Tamil Nadu
Email: me At

Journal of NELTA: Call for Papers

Nepal English Language Teachers' Association (NELTA) announces call for papers for its peer-review journal, the Journal of NELTA. We encourage contributors to make their work relevant to classroom teaching as well as to serve the larger purpose of creating or promoting ELT discourses at local, national, and regional contexts. Contributions that deal with ELT theories and methods will serve the professional community only to the extent that they are situated in the authors' own practices and/or in the contemporary educational and social contexts.

The objective of this volume is to gather the voices of teachers, scholars, and educationists who are best able to define and advance the conversation and practice of ELT.  

Deadline for Submission: October 1, 2011
Manuscripts submission: neltajournal AT

Please visit for submission details.

National seminar on English Language Education in India: Theory and Practice

The University of Hyderabad, in association with the ELT@I Hyderabad Chapter, is organizing a 3-day national seminar on 'English Language Education in India: Theory and Practice' on 23-25 January 2012.

English is the primary language of education in India today. The demands made on language teachers are steadily increasing, so is the awareness among teachers for the need to improve their own knowledge base, teaching and professional skills. In this context, it is essential to understand the several dimensions of English language education thus gaining a holistic picture and simultaneously becoming aware of the wide range of issues that impact language education. The purpose of this seminar is to look at the political, theoretical and practical aspects of English in India, and the various dimensions of English language education today.

Important Dates:

Last date for submitting abstracts: 10 October 2011
Notification of acceptance or revision: 25 November 2011
Last date for receipt of final abstracts: 10 December 2011
Notification of final acceptance: 20 December 2011
Last date for complete papers: 15 January 2012
Last date for payment of registration fee: 15 January 2012

For more details, please contact: eleuoh@ AT

II International Conference on Embracing Glocal English

ELT@I Rajasthan Jaipur Chapter announces its II International Conference on 'Embracing Glocal English' to be held in Jaipur on 4-5 November 2011. Proposals for papers and workshops are invited from scholars/professionals.   

The 'glocal' is but a point at which multiple local, national and global forces converge. The use of English has also undergone change due to this convergence. In other words, English is going 'glocal'. It is going Global while maintaining the local roots.  As such ' glocal English' can be seen as a language that has international status but which also expresses local identities.

The conference seeks to explore the applicability of many Englishes as a workable global solution, at the same time retaining the local/national spirit. The conference proposes to take into consideration the socio-cultural, economic and technological aspects of acquisition of English as a second language.

For more details, please visit:

Asha Sundaram
Email: sundaramasha AT

Friday, September 23, 2011

Philosophy and literature Class note- 22nd Sept. 2011.

The class started with the revision of the previous session which was
about the birth of subject.  According to Kant the birth of subject is ‘knowing’, the world is limited and the subject is born in order to transcend it, in this process one goes through  suffering.
In the previous sessions, few questions were  not discussed in the class such as, what is expected of a researcher? What is Art? What is the purpose of art? When did the concept become Art? How did bourgeois society and Capitalism come about? How is art connected to bourgeois society and Capitalism? Therefore these were dealt in the class in a detailed manner. We were also give few tips to  keep in mind while writing a good research; to have clarity, to have thorough knowledge of the area one deals with, to pay close attention to the writing style, to give a brief summary of  every chapter and include what is going  to be explained in the next chapter and  it should have a complete structure etc.
 Art in the beginning was for pleasure, like music and poetry so, when we  go back to the history it is found that  art was developed by humans from the stone age but later  with elaborate and complex works of art, it became  intensely religious and symbolic. In the 4th century Art  was seen with a different view of  great writers like  Plato, Aristotle, Horace and Longinus who taught about the purpose of Art which was then mainly for pleasure. Until 17 th century Art was craft. But with the change of time there came shift in Art too. From the 18th Century  with the arrival of steam engine and industrialisation, people thought Art was something special, it is meant for artists only. Also Capitalist concept of a just society brought about a change in the world of Art which had a different perspective from pleasure to “Art for Art sake”. In the modern and post modern world  Art  is  seen as narrative of endless possibilities. Marx concept of Labour and Marx concept of  Capital greatly influenced the eighteenth century. So it is seen that art can have an impact on a society’s system of values.
The class discussion continued with the 18th century Industrialisation and its impact. Due to the Industrialisation there came a shift in the ritualistic function in the society. Industry means hard work. The Marx concepts of Labour and Capital were of great significance in this period. Who is bourgeois? Bourgeois are those who believe in the ideology of capitalism. Capitalist may or may not be bourgeois. The Idea of Art  for Arts sake   can be connected with  bourgeois, Which  had no social purpose. But  Art  remains always for the public.
 prepared by Gracy Simoon

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Schedule « Bangalore as a Creative City

Schedule « Bangalore as a Creative City

Philosophy and literature Class note- 21st sept. 2011.

The three important works by Kant are- Critique of pure reason, Critique of practical reason and Critique of judgment. He read Newton thoroughly and arrived at the conclusion that it is through reason that one understands the world. Kant’s argument is how do we understand world when we all are made up of same substance i.e. matter. But according to Kant we can understand and know it and that is through the ability to think. This is a particular way to understand the world. Human mind has the faculty of pure reason. He says that we can know the world but it is purely momentarily.

This is because we are matter with consciousness and one can have glimpse into life and world and thus momentarily understanding. This could be a possible reason for the fascination of death. Regarding this, a very interesting analogy was discussed in class, the whole thing was compared to a fish that can take a glimpse of water outside it but that can’t last longer because beyond that the fish can’t survive.

Kant goes on to say that human mind doesn’t have just pure reason but also practical reason and it also has a faculty of judgment and this faculty gives aesthetic vision. Though paradoxically aesthetic pleasure itself is non judgmental. It is a faculty of judgment that never judges.

About the birth of subject, Kant says there is a world to be known, can we transcend the limit of knowing. Now again Kant says that this ‘knowing’ of world is limited so in order to transcend the limit, subject is born. In order to transcend, one has to suffer.
Prepared by Fathima M
Pinto, Anil. Literature and Philosophy. Christ University. 21 Sept.2011. Lecture.
Zima, Peter. The Philosophy of Modern Literary Theory. New Jersey: The Athlone Press, 1999. Print.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Language and Philosophy Class notes Sept 20

Introduction to Philosophy and Literature

Key Questions discussed:
1)      What constitutes philosophy
2)      How philosophy is a product of time and other conditions
Alfred North Whitehead talked about ideas going back and forth and philosophy not having a linear progression.
Thales  (pre Socratic) is considered as the father of philosophy and emphasized that water constitutes life.
Philosophy studies life, cosmos, and human nature. (I’m still not sure how to define it). There was also a debate regarding Western philosophy and if there is an equivalent called “Indian philosophy”. The conclusion reached was that there are Indian systems of though like the Vedantic and the Buddhist systems of thought. However, this doesn’t mean that the Indian counterpart is inferior to western philosophy.
The German philosopher Immanuel Kant’s (1724–1804) major works include
a)      Critique of Pure Reason
b)      Critique of Practical Reason
c)       Critique of Judgment

The class also discussed the contributing factors of Renaissance, the fall of Constantinople, the silk route and how this paved way to the flow of ideas between the West and the Arabs.

Pinto, Anil. Literature and Philosophy. Christ University. 20th Sept.2011. Lecture.
Zima, Peter. The Philosophy of Modern Literary Theory. New Jersey: The Athlone Press, 1999. Print.

 Prepared By Vijoy