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Cananau, Iulian, Dr.
Publications (10 of 13) Show all publications
Cananau, I. (2019). Toward a comparatist horizon in conceptual history [Review]. History of European Ideas, 45(1), 117-120
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Toward a comparatist horizon in conceptual history
2019 (English)In: History of European Ideas, ISSN 0191-6599, E-ISSN 1873-541X, Vol. 45, no 1, p. 117-120Article, book review (Refereed) Published
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2019
National Category
History of Ideas
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-27587 (URN)10.1080/01916599.2018.1493307 (DOI)000476914900009 ()2-s2.0-85049807065 (Scopus ID)
Note

Recension av:

Conceptual history in the European space, edited by Willibald Steinmetz, Michael Freeden and Javier Fernández-Sebastián, New York and Oxford, Berghahn Books, 2017, 320 pp., $120.00/£85.00 (hardback), ISBN 978-1-78533-482-5

Available from: 2018-07-13 Created: 2018-07-13 Last updated: 2019-08-23Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. (2018). Between Womanhood and Citizenship: A Conceptual-Historicist Approach to Antebellum Women's Literature of Protest. In: : . Paper presented at The Joint 32nd European Association for American Studies & 63rd British Association for American Studies Conference (EBAAS 2018); London, UK; 4-7 April 2018.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Between Womanhood and Citizenship: A Conceptual-Historicist Approach to Antebellum Women's Literature of Protest
2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This study investigates the tension between the antebellum ideas of “womanhood” and “citizenship” as represented in three classic texts of women’s literature of protest: the “Declaration of Sentiments” of the Seneca Falls Convention, Margaret Fuller’s Woman in the Nineteenth Century, and Harriet Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. After a brief discussion of what is meant by “literature of protest” and the reasons why these texts belong to this category, I proceed to read them and their historical context following a method inspired by Reinhart Koselleck’s history of concepts (Begriffsgeschichte); I approach “womanhood” and “citizenship” as concepts whose semantic fields can and should be analyzed in their diachronic and synchronic dimensions. Here, however, I will focus on the latter, in an attempt to account for conflicts as well as commonalities between them.

National Category
Specific Literatures History
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-28451 (URN)
Conference
The Joint 32nd European Association for American Studies & 63rd British Association for American Studies Conference (EBAAS 2018); London, UK; 4-7 April 2018
Available from: 2018-11-13 Created: 2018-11-13 Last updated: 2018-12-03Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. (2018). "Partialist" and "Universalist": Figurations of U.S. Exceptionalism in Antebellum Writing. In: : . Paper presented at Open Covenants: Pasts and Futures of Global America, 10th Biennal Conference of the Swedish Association for American Studies; Stockholm University, Sweden; 28-30 September 2018.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>"Partialist" and "Universalist": Figurations of U.S. Exceptionalism in Antebellum Writing
2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In this paper, I investigate the tension between particularism and universalism at the core of antebellum American exceptionalism. “Particularism” is herein understood as a broader term encompassing “nationalism”, “jingoism”, “sectarianism”, as well as “individualism” and “self-interest”.  As for “universalism”, it is conceived neither in theological terms as the doctrine that all people will be eventually saved, nor as a kind of foreign policy, but as virtually synonymous to “universality”, or the condition and quality of being universal. Taking my cues from one of Emerson’s famous paradoxes, namely that “every man is a partialist… and… every man is a universalist also” (in the essay “Nominalist and Realist”), I proceed to identify and compare representations of particularism and universalism in antebellum writings on U.S. national identity by Emerson, Fuller, Simms, Douglass, and Delany.

National Category
Specific Literatures
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-28453 (URN)
Conference
Open Covenants: Pasts and Futures of Global America, 10th Biennal Conference of the Swedish Association for American Studies; Stockholm University, Sweden; 28-30 September 2018
Available from: 2018-11-13 Created: 2018-11-13 Last updated: 2018-12-03Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. (2018). Toward a Methodology of Intuitive Critical Thinking in Literature Teaching. In: : . Paper presented at "Truth(s) and Alternative Facts", 20th Annual International Conference of the English Department of the University of Bucharest, Romania; 7-9 June 208.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Toward a Methodology of Intuitive Critical Thinking in Literature Teaching
2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Literature has a special relation with truth. It often purports to reveal that there are many ways of conceiving truth, that indeed there is no absolute truth. Yet there are, in literature, notions of truth like the truth of the slave narratives and all of the so-called protest literature that resist relativization. In a sense, much of our work and expertise as literary scholars is to distinguish between claims to truth and to advance one claim against others through persuasive and valid arguments. To do that, we employ an ability to think critically that we have developed and trained as part of our professional identity. So embedded is this ability in the practice of literary studies that it might be considered exemplary for what theorists of critical thinking tentatively call “a way of being” and “a habit of the mind”. After a brief discussion of a few conceptualizations of truth in literature and literary studies, I present the notion of “intuitive critical thinking” and its possibilities for teaching literature in higher education, with a focus on the syllabi of some of my literature courses at the University of Gävle.

National Category
Didactics Learning
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-28452 (URN)
Conference
"Truth(s) and Alternative Facts", 20th Annual International Conference of the English Department of the University of Bucharest, Romania; 7-9 June 208
Available from: 2018-11-13 Created: 2018-11-13 Last updated: 2018-12-03Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. (2017). English-Language Literature Teaching and Democratic (Higher) Education. In: : . Paper presented at Litteraturstudiers betydelse för språkutbildning: litteraturdidaktiska perspektiv för ungdomsskola och högskola, 6-7 oktober 2017, Jönköping, Sverige.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>English-Language Literature Teaching and Democratic (Higher) Education
2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Out of the values, norms, and practices that constitute the semantic field of democracy, this study hones in and reflects on those that are relevant for the goals and principles of higher education in the national context. Furthermore, the scope of this study is narrowed down to the teaching of English-language literature in Swedish institutions of higher education. Given the relatively high degree of autonomy that the teaching of literature has within the academic subject of English and the wide diversity of lecturers’ and professors’ research interests and backgrounds, it is important to account for the educators’ notions of, and attitudes toward, democratic education and democratic values as well as for the ways in which those values are reflected in their teaching practice. The main questions are: 1) Which norms, structures and practices are considered to foster democracy in higher education and which norms, structures and practices are considered real or potential challenges to democracy in higher education? 2) What specific advantages does the teaching of English-language literature have for democratic education? 3) How do the democratic values fare in the teaching practice (in objectives, content, assessment, as well as in the implementation and course/lesson design)? Empirical evidence will be gathered through semi-structured interviews with English-language literature faculty from several Swedish universities. Some partial results of this investigation, which is part of an on-going project, will be presented at the conference.

Keywords
democracy, Swedish higher education, English literature, teaching
National Category
Didactics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-25586 (URN)
Conference
Litteraturstudiers betydelse för språkutbildning: litteraturdidaktiska perspektiv för ungdomsskola och högskola, 6-7 oktober 2017, Jönköping, Sverige
Available from: 2017-11-24 Created: 2017-11-24 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. (2017). Putting Context to New Use in Literary Studies: A Conceptual-Historicist Interpretation of Poe's 'Man of the Crowd'. Partial Answers, 15(2), 241-261
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Putting Context to New Use in Literary Studies: A Conceptual-Historicist Interpretation of Poe's 'Man of the Crowd'
2017 (English)In: Partial Answers, ISSN 1565-3668, E-ISSN 1936-9247, Vol. 15, no 2, p. 241-261Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Poe’s adherence to a strict aesthetic formalism used to be problematic for studies of the relationship between his work and its American context; the methodology of New Historicism has helped to surmount this problem but sometimes with excessive emphasis on socio-historical contexts. This essay examines critical practices at work in the interpretation of Poe’s canonical piece “The Man of the Crowd” in light of the recent debates in literary studies around the problem of context and contextualization in general and the “hegemony” of new historicism in particular. It then suggests an alternative method of reading literary texts and their contexts — one based on Reinhart Koselleck’s history of concepts. It offers an analysis of “The Man of the Crowd” as an illustration of this method.

Keywords
antebellum American literature, literary history, conceptual history, privacy, E. A. Poe, Reinhart Koselleck, context, new historicism, new formalism
National Category
General Literature Studies Specific Literatures History
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-22540 (URN)000403032600003 ()2-s2.0-85020302154 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-10-04 Last updated: 2018-12-03Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. & Sims, C. (2017). Teaching Literature, Implementing Multicultural Education (1ed.). In: Ulrika Serrander & Peder Thalén (Ed.), Kunskap, motstånd, möjlighet: Humanistisk forskning i dag (pp. 297-316). Halmstad: Molin & Sorgenfrei
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Teaching Literature, Implementing Multicultural Education
2017 (English)In: Kunskap, motstånd, möjlighet: Humanistisk forskning i dag / [ed] Ulrika Serrander & Peder Thalén, Halmstad: Molin & Sorgenfrei, 2017, 1, p. 297-316Chapter in book (Refereed)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Halmstad: Molin & Sorgenfrei, 2017 Edition: 1
National Category
Specific Literatures Didactics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-25584 (URN)978-91-87515-99-6 (ISBN)
Available from: 2017-11-24 Created: 2017-11-24 Last updated: 2018-11-13Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. (2016). The Conversational Framework, Democratic Education, and Pedagogic Design in the American Literature Survey: A Case Study. In: : . Paper presented at SAAS 9th Biennial Conference, 30 September-1 October 2016, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Conversational Framework, Democratic Education, and Pedagogic Design in the American Literature Survey: A Case Study
2016 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This presentation attempts to probe the applicability of Diana Laurillard’s “conversational” model of collaborative learning to the teaching of the American Literature Survey at the University of Gävle. For the purpose of exemplification, I have selected a unit on race and gender representations in late nineteenth-century fiction, with a focus on Mark Twain’s Pudd’nhead Wilson and Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wallpaper”, respectively. Given that the vast majority of students who take up this course are enrolled in the teacher training program, an important research question is how this pedagogic framework might contribute to developing and consolidating democratic values and practices in their future roles as high school teachers of English in Sweden. This aim converges with the curricular objective that civic values and attitudes should underpin the teaching of all subjects in the Swedish school system. The study is part of a project entitled “Democratic Vistas in the Classroom: Teaching American Literature in Swedish Higher Education”.

National Category
Didactics Learning Specific Literatures
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-22542 (URN)
Conference
SAAS 9th Biennial Conference, 30 September-1 October 2016, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden
Projects
Democratic Vistas in the Classroom: Teaching American Literature in Swedish Higher Education
Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-10-04 Last updated: 2018-11-13Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. (2015). Constituting Americanness: A History of the Concept and Its Representations in Antebellum American Literature. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang Publishing Group
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Constituting Americanness: A History of the Concept and Its Representations in Antebellum American Literature
2015 (English)Book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

This book is based on my PhD dissertation, entitled Representations of the Concept of “Americanness” in the Canon of Antebellum American Literature. It is a work in cultural history and literary theory that suggests a fresh and potentially fruitful approach to the old notion of Americanness, an idea that lay at the foundation of American studies in mid-twentieth century, only to be exposed as “ideological fiction” by the New Americanists. Surprisingly, neither its advocates nor its critics have made the scholarly effort necessary to theorize or conceptualize Americanness. 

The subtitle indicates what is distinctive about this project: this is a study of the concept of Americanness. Thus, following Reinhart Koselleck’s history of concepts (Begriffsgeschichte), I propose that “Americanness” is not an ordinary word, but a concept with a broad, albeit historically specific, semantic field. Thus, in the three decades before the Civil War, the semantic field of “Americanness” was constituted at the intersection of several concepts, in different stages of their respective histories; among these, nation, representation, individualism, sympathy, race, and womanhood. By tracing the representations of these concepts in literary texts of the antebellum era, paying attention to their overlapping with the rhetoric of national identification, I uncover some of the meaning of “Americanness” in that period. 

As far as literary history writing is concerned, Begriffsgeschichte has a double potential: first, to explain the source of confusion between historically different semantic loads of the same concept and, second, to check the critic’s tendency to relativize concepts and therefore make the past a little too familiar. The concept-focused close reading of literary works of the past involves a reformulation of the text/context binary so as to account for contingencies without diminishing the importance of exegesis (a crippling tendency in contemporary literary studies); ultimately, this work aims to reconsider the relationship between history and literature.

To lay out the meaning of “Americanness” I analyze a wide range of antebellum texts by Emerson, Melville, Thoreau, Douglass, Whitman, Stowe, Jacobs, Hawthorne, Poe, and Fuller, against the background of critical reception and recent scholarship. Thus, to college students and faculty, this book offers a period study of major American writers of the antebellum era.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang Publishing Group, 2015. p. 280
Series
American Culture, ISSN 1615-567X ; 11
Keywords
Americanness, conceptual history, literary history, American studies, Koselleck
National Category
General Literature Studies Specific Literatures History of Ideas
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-18515 (URN)10.3726/978-3-653-05117-9 (DOI)2-s2.0-84967262780 (Scopus ID)978-3-631-65769-0 (ISBN)978-3-653-05117-9 (ISBN)
Available from: 2014-12-12 Created: 2014-12-11 Last updated: 2018-11-13Bibliographically approved
Cananau, I. (2015). Searching for a point d'appui: Constructions of National Identity in Antebellum American Literature. In: : . Paper presented at "American Values: Public Values, Private Vices?" The 24th Biennial NAAS Conference on American Studies, 11-13 May, 2015, University of Oulu, Finland.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Searching for a point d'appui: Constructions of National Identity in Antebellum American Literature
2015 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In the decades before the Civil War, American society witnessed the intensification of political and social tensions over issues such as slavery, Irish immigration, laborers’ rights, and women’s rights; the major economic transformations and the drive toward the new order of free enterprise capitalism (especially in the North); the expansionist policies materialized as Indian removal or military aggression against a neighboring country. Such disruptive forces were taking a heavy toll on the national fabric. At least this is what some American literati feared; through all the tumult and vitality of antebellum America, they discerned a sort of moral groundlessness. The America(s) they imagined seem to point to this ethical dimension as their common denominator. Thoreau is one of those antebellum writers who peeped into the American conscience and tried to find a “point d’appui”, a new ethical foundation for the national project that was underway. This paper investigates his and others’ literary re-constructions of America.

Keywords
US national identity, antebellum American literature, moral foundation, political vices, progress
National Category
Specific Literatures History
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-22541 (URN)
Conference
"American Values: Public Values, Private Vices?" The 24th Biennial NAAS Conference on American Studies, 11-13 May, 2015, University of Oulu, Finland
Available from: 2016-10-04 Created: 2016-10-04 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved
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