Conference 2003

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Literature and Industry: From the printed text to the hypertext

Literature has responded in changing ways from the period of the industrial revolution and the advent of the printing press through the scientific and technological revolution of the early twentieth century to the digital and information revolution of the current era. Dramatic social changes span this era: from the rise of the bourgeois nation state and the expansion of colonialism, through revolution and anti-colonial upsurge, fascism and counterrevolution, to the contemporary world driven by ‘globalised’ finance. The social and technological transformations have been accompanied by no less dramatic changes in the modes of literary production as well as in the nature and preoccupations of the literary text. These changes in the literary text have also been influenced by parallel changes in other forms of artistic activity. The revolutions in science and technology that came in the wake of industrialisation gave rise to new means of communication such as photography, film, radio, television, and the Internet, which in their turn engendered new modes of artistic activity. They also brought new forms of human experience, new perceptions of space and time and new ways of looking at the world.

Some of the markers in this process have been the emergence of the individual subject and the advent of the masses, urbanisation and migration, the rise of the mass media, and the transformation of the city from the early stages of industrialisation into the anonymous metropolis and finally to the present day ‘globalised’ megapolis. These have posed challenges to the literary text and spawned various forms of writing, from linear forms of representation through the various forms of experimentation with time and space and the juxtaposing and counterposing forms of collage and montage to the interactive and nonsequential hypertext.

The seminar will explore the connections between technology, society, art, the media and the literary text as they change and transform each other from the onset of the industrial revolution to the present ‘globalised’ world. It will attempt to bring together scholars from different disciplines to reflect upon the nature and implications of these changes.


Thursday, 27 February 2003, Room 22, Arts Faculty

10.00 am

Opening Remarks

Vibha Maurya, Shaswati Mazumdar

10.15 am

Manfred Stassen

The Novel as "Printed Matter" – Balzac and the Industrialization of Literature

11.00 am



11.15 am

Sanjay Kumar

Space and Ideology in Old Goriot of Balzac

12.00 am

Dhir Sarangi

Still-life and collage in painting and poetry:  a comparative study of Apollinaire and some cubist paintings



Chair: Vibha Maurya

12.45 pm



1.45 pm

Hartmut Eggert

Cultural Change and Actual Practice
of Using Media by Young Adults

2.30 pm

José Pedro Sousa Dias

Understanding the Nature of the History of Science: Hypertext as a Teaching and Scholarship Tool

3.15 pm



3.30 pm

Shiva Kumar Srinivasan

Digital Poetics: On the Libidinal Economy of the Hypertext

4.15 p.m

Kathleen Kerr

The Politics of Hypertext: the end of critical theory?



Chair: Anil Bhatti

 Friday, 28 February 2003, Room 22, Arts Faculty

10.00 am

Nilanjan Chakrabarti

The Birth of the French East India Company and the Notion of Voyage in French Enlightenment Prose

10.45 am

Kusum Aggarwal

Industry, Empire and the West African Experience

11.30 am



11.45 am

Margit Köves

Freedom and Imprisonment: Change of Horizons in Kertész’s Fateless, The Sworn Statement and Esterházy’s Life And Literature

12.30 pm

Kavita Bhatia

War is No Longer Declared, only Continued: Bachmann's Modernity Between Despair and Hope



Chair: Manfred Stassen

1.15 pm



2.15 pm

Donatella Libani

Industrial development in Italy during the 1950s-60s and literature: An analysis of Elio Pagliarani’s La ragazza Carla

3.00 pm

Rosy Singh

Kafka: Mythology in Bureaucratic Modernity

3.45 pm



4.00 pm

Antonia Navarro-Tejero

Women and Dalits in the sphere of the factory: double morality in Arundhati Roy’s The God of Small Things



Chair: S K Das

 Saturday, 1 March 2003, Room 22, Arts Faculty

10.00 am

George Anca

Between Hypertext and Canon

10.45 am

Swati Acharya

Mapping of “(M)Bumbai” : metamorphosis of a Metropolis – urbanization and Indian Cinema

11.30 am



11.45 am

Ashish Agnihotri

The Return to the Oral Tradition in the Age of Industrialisation: Sergei Eisenstein’s Battleship Potemkin



[The film will also be shown.]



Chair: Abhai Maurya

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