Please join Crossings on Tuesday, April 20, 2010 featuring Pashmina Murthy presenting "The Wicked Witch of the South", demonstrating the metonymic slippage between the feminine and the marginal becoming complicated within the dynamics of a witch-hunt, where it is the "crone," upon whom the violence is visited. The event will take place in 105 Scott Hall from 3:30-5:00 p.m.
Crossings: Featuring Pashmina Murthy - April 20, 2010
Critical Dialogues: Crossings in American Studies
Tuesday, April 20th 3:30-5:00 pm
105 Scott Hall
"The Wicked Witch of the South"
Framed in the cross-cultural belief that the female body is capable of embodying both powerful evil and good, her talk seeks to demonstrate the ways in which the figure of the witch complicates our understanding of marginality. What she hopes to show is that the metonymic slippage between the feminine and the marginal becomes complicated within the dynamics of a witch-hunt, where it is the "crone," upon whom the violence is visited. Approaching it from a theoretical perspective, she is interested less in accusations of witchcraft/sorcery/possession per se and more in their resurgence at this particular juncture in the global South. Her interest in this issue is, thus, two-pronged: on the one hand, she examines scholarly readings of this resurgence as a possible response to globalization and to the failure of democracy. At another level, however, I look into the transhistorical punctuation of these instances of violence as demanding a re-conceptualization of marginality - one that isn't encapsulated within the formation of the nation-state.
Sponsored by the Department of American Studies
Pashmina Murthy is a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies at the University of Minnesota. She has a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Southern California, and her research interests include transnational studies, postcolonial theory, urban politics, and subaltern feminisms.