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Université Toulouse-Jean Jaurès (Toulouse II-le Mirail)

Going Local and Getting Personal: Toward a Regional Reading Practice / Nancy Cook

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Going Local and Getting Personal: Toward a Regional Reading Practice / Nancy Cook

Going Local and Getting Personal: Toward a Regional Reading Practice / Nancy Cook, in symposium international "Regional Becomings in North America" organisé sous la responsabilité scientifique de Wendy Harding (Cultures Anglo-Saxonnes (CAS), Université Toulouse Jean Jaurès, France) et Nancy Cook (University of Montana, USA), Université Toulouse Jean Jaurès, 7-8 avril 2016.
Session 3 : Defining Place, Defining Self.
* Les images présentées par Nancy Cook lors de sa conférence sont du photographe Nicholas Trofimuk.

Critics often think of the regional and regionalism in terms of texts or works of art. This presentation asks that we turn that around in order to re-imagine what a set of critical regionalist reading practices might look like and how they might function in counter-hegemonic, even confrontational ways which, rather than reifying regional mythologies and beliefs, can open up a space for sometimes transformative examinations.
A few questions provide a starting point for such a conversation. They include: What happens when readers or viewers who are commonly not thought of as a target audience encounter a text that speaks for or about them, or offers them up as textual material, examples, case studies?  How can regionalist, or even microregionalist reading interventions work to locate those often thought as isolated from artistic and cultural discourses in a set of larger and connected conversations? What happens when readers/viewers have “local knowledge” that might complement or contradict a text or work of art?  And finally, how can moments of disjuncture between a localized subject position, a regional one, a national one, or a global one become productive towards a new critical regional identity. Examples include a local reading of Lucy Lippard’s The Lure of the Local, an opinion piece/admonishment of President Obama by California writer Gerald Haslam, and the best selling Jon Krakauer expose, Missoula.



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