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Savoirs en prisme | 8 – Spatiality and textuality

 

In the 1970s, the linguistic turn opened up new perspectives to various academic fields, not only because it underlined the importance of language and discourse in social sciences, but also because it renewed the ways in which texts and writing might be investigated. The linguistic turn also paved the way for the spatial turn, which invites researchers to take into account more systematically the spatial dimension of every aspect of social life. Such epistemological renewal confirmed the development of post-structuralist thought. This issue of Savoirs en Prisme takes as its starting point this double context and aims at exploring the relations between textuality and spatiality. The articulation between the two concepts, which has already attracted critical attention in geographical research, may manifest itself in various ways.

Space, then, might be represented textually, in which case representation determines a mimetic process. Resorting to spatial concepts has renewed critical approaches to spatiality in the literary imagination. This is for instance the method championed by Bertrand Westphal, who defines geocriticism as a geo-centered and multifocal approach which makes it possible to embed the discursive construction of places within an intertextual, intercultural and intermedial chain[1].

Yet space might also be used to shed light on the inner workings of the textual medium itself – and especially the effects it produces –, which turns the links between spatiality and textuality into a poietical process. It is therefore possible to focus on the ways in which space might be apprehended as a category allowing us to study the dynamics of textual apparatuses and discursive practices.

The latter approach will be the focus of this issue and potential contributors are invited to submit contributions exploring some of the following issues:

 

  • Epistemological issues:

To what extent can space become a category in which a renewed study of texts is made possible (an approach which might be extended to other artistic fields such as music writing or to the new ways of writing offered by new technologies)?

What new perspectives and transdisciplinary perspectives emerge from such conceptual circulations?

 

  • Theoretical issues

What does the use of spatial concepts bring to textual theory?

What types of space do texts construct?

To what extent does the use of such spatial concepts allow us to reflect on these very concepts?

 

  • Methodological issues

In what ways may reading and the analysis of literary texts be spatialized?

How might spatial concepts developed in other academic fields – especially in social sciences – be used in literary studies?

 

Articles may vary in length from 5000 to 8000 words (inclusive of notes and bibliography) and must be submitted to the guest editors (yann.calberac@univ-reims.fr and ronan.ludot-vlasak@univ-lille3.fr) by October 1st, 2017. A stylesheet is available on the website of the journal: https://savoirsenprisme.com/note-aux-auteurs/

[1] Bertrand Westphal, La Géocritique. Réel, fiction, espace, Paris, Les Éditions de Minuit, 2007, p. 183, 193, 194.

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