Bénédicte Ledent

Bénédicte Ledent
University of Liège | ulg · Department of Modern Languages and Literatures

PhD

About

95
Publications
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209
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Introduction
Bénédicte Ledent currently works at the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, University of Liège.

Publications

Publications (95)
Article
Starting from the idea that radio drama is a generic hinterland, this essay concentrates on one of Phillips’s radio plays, Hotel Cristobel, which was broadcast in 2005 but started as a stage play back in the 1990s. As its title suggests, this play is set in a Caribbean hotel and explores the neo-colonial interactions between three characters, who a...
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Published in Journal of West Indian Literature
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Full-text available
Interview with Caryl Phillips conducted on 3 July 2019, at the 43rd Annual Conference of the Society for Caribbean Studies. Published by the Eccles Centre for American Studies, attached to the British Library. https://www.bl.uk/eccles-centre/resources/lectures-and-interviews
Article
https://orbi.uliege.be/handle/2268/246631 This essay takes a closer look at some of Evelyn O’Callaghan’s scholarly achievements, beyond her overarching commitment to the work of Caribbean women writers. It particularly focuses on her early publication The Earliest Patriots, her active and generous involvement in various collaborative endeavours, an...
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Black and Asian British writing can be formalized as diaspora literatures with links to ancestral homelands on the subcontinent, in Africa and in the Caribbean; interrogations of and inscriptions on a matrix of British cultures are another thematic and aesthetic concern of black and Asian British writing. Beyond this binary framework, though, a ran...
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Published on Caribbean Literary Heritage’s Facebook page //www.facebook.com/Caribbean-Literary-Heritage-1491063070954498/, 4th August 2020
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Caribbean literature is replete with migrant figures that are viewed when they go abroad as both exotic and mad, the apparent otherness of their behaviour or life choices being perceived in the west as evidence of some form of mental imbalance. Victims of what Graham Huggan has called “a particular mode of aesthetic perception”, these characters di...
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In this introduction to the special issue on “Illuminating Lives: The Biographical Impulse in Postcolonial Literatures”, we start by situating the genre of biographical fiction, which has become increasingly popular in postcolonial literatures and beyond, in relation to more “traditional” nonfictional biography. We then examine how postcolonial bio...
Book
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Moving beyond the postcolonial literature field’s traditional focus on the novel, this book shines a light on the "minor" genres in which postcolonial issues are also explored. The contributors examine the intersection of generic issues with postcolonial realities in regions such as South Africa, Nigeria, New Zealand, Indonesia, Australia, the Unit...
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Starting from the recognition of a biographical impulse in the work of Caryl Phillips, this interview focuses on his practice of biographical fiction. Among the issues raised are the increased popularity of life writing, the tension between fact and fiction at the heart of biographical narratives, the linguistic exactitude involved in focusing on h...
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Between 1984 and 2016 Caryl Phillips wrote nine radio plays which were all broadcast on the BBC. Meant for a different circuit of communication than his novels, essays and published stage plays, Phillips’s radio plays might be dismissed as minor writing, yet they constitute a fascinating, under-investigated body of texts which are worth exploring a...
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As outlined in this introductory chapter, this collection explores how Caribbean writers, including diasporic ones, accommodate altered states of consciousness, such as madness, and thereby reconfigure a space long constructed as a zone of degeneration and derangement. Taking as its starting point the pervasive representation of various forms of me...
Book
This collection takes as its starting point the ubiquitous representation of various forms of mental illness, breakdown and psychopathology in Caribbean writing, and the fact that this topic has been relatively neglected in criticism, especially in Anglophone texts, apart from the scholarship devoted to Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea (1966). The con...
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Starting from the vocal nature of Crossing the River, this article looks at Caryl Phillips’s archives housed at the Beinecke Library and thereby attempts to retrieve the voices that did not make it into the book, but which are nonetheless important pieces in the writer’s imaginative universe. This article will refer to three thematically linked rad...
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Through a reading of Caryl Phillips' most recent novel, The Lost Child (2015), this article examines a paradox at the heart of Phillips' work: The tension between the ruptures and continuities brought about by the historical encounter of north and south (specifically, eighteenth-century northern Britain and the Caribbean). The novel focuses on the...
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This text is the introduction to a special issue of Ariel on Caryl Phillips (48.3&4, July-October 2017)
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As Paul Gilroy points out in The Black Atlantic (1993), a comparative approach to the African and Jewish Diasporas, in spite of possible pitfalls, is likely to lead to a better understanding of modernity, characterized as it is by displacements but also by a propensity to discriminate against the ‘Other’. Several Caribbean authors have suggested in...
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Review of Traversée d'une oeuvre: Crossing the River de Caryl Phillips
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This essay examines the role of language in Zadie Smith's White Teeth (2000) and Andrea Levy's Small Island (2004), arguing that English in its various forms not only partakes in the shaping of postcolonial human relations but also helps deconstruct rigid notions of identity, including that of Englishness. Nevertheless the two novels differ in cert...
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Described in Fred D'Aguiar's novel The Longest Memory as a "knotted mess" that "cannot now be undone, only understood", i slavery has been haunting the production of writers of the Caribbean diaspora in England since the end of the twentieth century. Quite understandably so, as the exploration of this painful, yet often silenced, episode of British...
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Dinaw Mengestu's The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears (2007) has been greeted as a subtle and moving exploration of the migrant condition, written in elegant and lyrical prose; one of its main specificities, however, is its calling into question of monolithic approaches to the African diaspora. Depicting the loneliness that characterizes the life...
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Most of the existing criticism on Caryl Phillips deals with his novels or his essays. His plays, which were for the most part written in the 1980s, have received comparatively little attention. This article argues that Phillips’s dramatic production should be examined closely because it contains in a nutshell some of the themes and characters that...
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This essay focuses on the work of Caryl Phillips, a British author of Caribbean origin. It examines how his character-driven fiction has addressed masculinities over the years. The first part starts from the observation of a relative deficit in masculine visibility in Phillips' fiction from The Final Passage (1985) to A Distant Shore (2003) and tak...
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Transition updates Countee Cullen’s iconic question, examining the meaning of the continent for members of African diasporas both old and new.
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Studies of sexuality in Caribbean culture are on the rise, focusing mainly on homosexuality and homophobia or on regional manifestations of normative and nonnormative sexualities. The Cross-Dressed Caribbean extends this exploration by using the trope of transvestism not only to analyze texts and contexts from anglophone, francophone, Spanish, Dutc...
Book
Writing in the Key of Life is the first critical collection devoted to the British-Caribbean author Caryl Phillips, a major voice in contemporary anglophone literatures. Phillips’s impressive body of fiction, drama, and non-fiction has garnered wide praise for its formal inventiveness and its incisive social criticism as well as its unusually sensi...
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Review of Velma Pollard's Considering Woman I & II
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The Encyclopedia of Twentieth-Century Fiction, Vol. 3: World Fiction
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Dans ce collectif bilingue, les représentations de l'Afrique et des Africains dans différentes expressions artistiques sont étudiées par des chercheurs travaillant dans des contextes (géographiques et linguistiques) différents. La diaspora africaine en particulier reçoit une attention renouvelée, axée sur des manifestations tant actuelles que plus...
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It has not been easy to collect information on African American research conducted in Belgium since the 1960s. In our country there has not been an undertaking of a size and scope comparable to what Michel and Geneviève Fabre have achieved in France, perhaps because Belgium is divided linguistically, with two communities, one Dutch-speaking, the ot...
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In 1983, Salman Rushdie observed (in an essay on 'Commonwealth Literature') that black British literature does not exist, that "the category is a chimera" comprising different traditions united only by their proponents' pigmentation alongside their British citizenship or residence. The label 'black British' has often been seen as reductive and divi...
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This bilingual collection illustrates the concept of the ‘Warrior of the Imaginary’, as defined by Patrick Chamoiseau, in a multi-faceted corpus of texts. Francophone contributions explore the role of the Caribbean writer in works by Chamoiseau, Édouard Glissant, Daniel Maximin, and Joseph Zobel. Essays in English focus not only on familiar writers...
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Commonwealth, 30.2 (2008), pp. 121-122, 2008
Book
This second collection, complementing ASNEL Papers 9.1, covers a similar range of writers, topics, themes and issues, all focusing on present-day transcultural issues and their historical antecedents. Topics treated: Preparing for post-apartheid in South African fiction; Maori culture and the New Historicism; Danish-New Zealand acculturation; lingu...
Book
This collection has one central theoretical focus, viz. stock-taking essays on the present and future status of postcolonialism, transculturalism, nationalism, and globalization. These are complemented by ‘special’ angles of entry (e.g. ‘dharmic ethics’) and by considerations of the global impress of technology (African literary studies and the Int...
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Language has always been a major issue for post-colonial writers, being at once an instrument used by the colonial power and one of the prime avenues of resistance to this oppression. For displaced West Indian writers in particular, English has been a significant tool for self-assertion, all the more ambiguous because it is their "mother tongue" wh...
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This volume starts from a textual analysis of Phillip's fiction and examines how it charts a new Diasporic sensibility, grounded in the novelist's Caribbeanness, but also expressive of a redifined sense of Britishness. Focusing on Phillips's pervasive interest in displacement, it also addresses characterization and the non-conventional form of his...
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This paper attempts to underline the epistemological implications of Phillips's handling of diasporic history through a focus on individual lives in Cambridge (1991) and The Nature of Blood (1997). His confessional first‐person narratives highlight the intricacies inherent in human nature, thereby resisting the globalizing discourse of liberal huma...
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F rancophone and anglophone Caribbean literatures. were long regarded as separate fields of research, clearly divided by linguistic barriers, but also sealed from each other by mental ramparts erected on the diverging colonial histories of the two areas and forgetful of glaring commonalities stemming from a shared experience of exile and bondage. T...
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Of all the many elephant traps lying ahead of us, the largest and most dangerous pitfall would be the adoption of a ghetto mentality. Salman Rushdie 1 Counter-discursive criticism dominated the study of new literatures for many years, as the critical work of Helen Tiffin, for example, testifies; an important and necessary stage in the development o...
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Caribbean and "Black British" novels of exile tend to follow the general trend in Caribbean fiction. Even if things are currently changing, the majority of the novels published so far has been written by men and relatively few among them depict convincing and complex women characters. It would, of course, be unfair to assume that all Caribbean male...

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