Steep Stairs Review. Volume 11

October 15, 2016

For those of you who are new to Steep Stairs Review, this journal is a collection of diverse and eclectic works featuring academic and creative contributions from Trinity College staff and external submissions. We see Steep Stairs Review as the basis for a forum of discussion of literary art, creative outputs, contemporary politics and anything and everything in between. As such, it is perhaps arbitrary to confine the submissions into an all-encompassing topic. However, if there is an overarching theme to this edition, it would perhaps be discussion of literary marginalities and an examination of approaches often overlooked by traditional analysis and categorisation.

To begin this issue, in an interview with Jennifer Mitchell, Rjurik Davidson discusses the necessity of genre evasion and the importance of destabilising traditional narrative tropes in his elucidation of the ‘New Weird’. This is followed by Unwrapped Sky (2014) and The Stars Askew (2016) by Rjurik Davidson:  An inexpert review, exploring the Pleasures of the Text, a review by Jennifer Mitchell of Rjurik’s latest works in the Caeli Amur Trilogy. Continuing the concept of ‘weirdness’ and anti-conventionality, Negin Ghodrati in Let Them Believe, Legion of Despair and the accompanying illustrations presents whispers and vistas portraying post-apocalyptic dimensions.

Next, Mike Heald considers philosophical positions in his review, The Vegetarian, by Han Kang: a Philosophical Perspective, in whichthe main character, Yeong-hye, experiences the sudden onset of a revulsion towards eating meat, brought on by dreams, and then tries to live out a compulsion to become a tree, or as [philosopher Michael] Marder might put it, to attain an ontophytological state”. After that, Talitha Fraser in Living Under The Veil photo essay “seeks to invite exploration of the layers, applied internally and externally, at personal, public and political levels through an exposition of the veil and its religious significance”.

This volume continues with The psychiatric beach read: Anti-Social Personality Disorder in commercial fiction by Susan Karpasitis and Fetishism in Cinderella and the Impotence of Prince Charming by Cara Burgio, who respectively consider emergent psycho-literary approaches to texts that address the fascinating, yet widely overlooked applications of personality disorders and fetishisation to popular fiction. Next, Nazanin Ghodrati, in Eyes, engages in an obsessive-compulsive monologue that serves as a response to the existential explorations by Sadegh Hedayat in one of the major literary works of 20th century Iran, The Blind Owl.

This volume concludes with a collection of poems by Rod Beecham, Talitha Fraser, and Danny Fahey (To Vanish, Fragments in the dreamingLamentations, Two Women, One Child And The Judgement, and The Prodigal Son) capturing intimate moments of yearning, loss, regret and disembodiment.

Thanks to our contributors and to our readers both established and new.

Steep Stairs Review Editors,
Nazanin Ghodrati and Susan Karpasitis


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