Rocky Mountain Review 
of Language and Literature

Volume 67, Number 2 
Fall 2013

Montana State University

Yu Hua's two short stories, "Boy in the Twilight" and "The Boisterous Game," are contextualized in a productive dialogue with studies of the short story genre and its narrative strategies, as well as in the context of contemporary China and its not-so-distant past. Specifically, this article focuses on the poetics of space and time in the two stories. Yu Hua conveys the characters' tragic and fatalistic vision of life "the ubiquity of entrapment and enclosure" through his poetic use of compressed time and constricted space, thereby depicting the daily life of those alienated individuals who were swept up by China's economic reforms and the general trend of "looking ahead to the future" of the post-Mao era.

Julie Elizabeth Redekopp 
The University of New Mexico

In 1743, Luiz da Costa, a Brazilian slave of African descent, stood trial for sodomy. Although the Inquisition's process required his confession, he managed to navigate his trial successfully, receiving a light punishment given the historical context. This essay examines Luiz da Costa's subject position within a socio-political context. I argue that he queered hegemony by transforming his passive subject position of recipient of the act of sodomia perfeita into an active discursive position. He created a strategic, discursive space from which he asserted his moral superiority over his master and thus received a more lenient verdict.

Vivan Steemers 
Western Michigan University

In Citizen and Subject: Contemporary Africa and the Legacy of Late Colonialism (1996), Mahmood Mamdani provides an analysis of the obstacles to democratization in post-independence Africa whose roots reside to a large measure in the historical and institutional context of colonialism. The bifurcated colonial rule proved itself the most effective domination mode of the African colonies: a centralized exercise of colonial power combined with a decentralized, often despotic rule of tribal authorities (a hierarchy of chiefs) who enforced customary laws without checks or restraints, notably in rural areas. This two-tiered system of oppression allowed the colonizing forces to settle the "native question," by maintaining law and order among the native people. This essay examines to what extent the ideological configurations under colonial rule as described by Mamdani are apparent in Cheikh Hamidou Kane's classic Francophone African novel Ambiguous Adventure (L'Aventure ambigué, 1961) set in Futa Toro, the northern region of Senegal. In this text, it is primarily the issue concerning the foreign (French) school that reveals the power of the various local secular and Islamic authorities. Should they allow or encourage their children to attend the foreign school, acknowledged as the latest "weapon" of the colonial regime? The relevance of this analysis is twofold: on a sociological level, it examines the force and resilience of ingrained traditional power structures in the face of political reforms, whether imposed by a domestic or an imperial administration; on a philosophical level, it deals with the question of reflection of social and/or historical reality within realist fiction.


Inhabiting Memory: Essays on Memory and Human Rights in the Americas, by Marjorie Agosí­n, ed.
Reviewer: Elena Foulis

Are We There Yet? Virtual Travel and Victorian Realism, by Alison Byerly
Reviewer: Jacqueline H. Harris

Anti-Saints: The New Golden Legend, by Sylvain Maráchal. Sheila Delany, trans.
Reviewer: Olga Amarie

Baroness Orczy's The Scarlet Pimpernel: A Publishing History, by Sally Dugan
Reviewer: Michael Adam Carroll

The Round House, by Louise Erdrich
Reviewer: Richard Mace

Glimpses of Phoenix: The Desert Metropolis in Written and Visual Media, by David William Foster
Reviewer: W. Daniel Holcombe

Ostrich Legs, by Alicia Kozameh. David E. Davis, trans.
Reviewer: Janis Breckenridge

No University Is an Island: Saving Academic Freedom, by Cary Nelson.
Reviewer: Janis Breckenridge

Dead Women Talking: Figures of Injustice in American Literature, by Brian Norman
Reviewer: Dana Benge

Cancionero: Manuscrito 1250 de la Biblioteca del Palacio Real, by Gómez Manrique. José I. Suárez, ed.
Reviewer: Connie L. Scarborough

No One Said a Word, by Paula Varsavsky
Reviewer: Elena Foulis