Issue 85/3-2017

18/12/2017 Anna Křivánková


Contents

Articles

 

Alexander Andrason and Juan-Pablo Vita
The YQTL-Ø “Preterite” in Ugaritic Epic Poetry……………………………………345–387

The present paper studies issues related to the existence (or the absence) of the YQTL-Ø “preterite” form in Ugaritic epic poetry, and determines which of the two well-entrenched positions found currently in scholarship – i.e., the pro YQTL-Ø and the contra YQTL-Ø model – is more plausible. By examining the existing literature and various pieces of Ugaritic, Semitic, and crosslinguistic evidence, the authors conclude the following: the existence of YQTL-Ø is significantly more plausible than both the absence of YQTL-Ø and the use of YQTL-u as an expression of narrative foreground.

KEYWORDS
Ugaritic | Semitic languages | yaqtul | prefix conjugation | grammaticalization | cognitive linguistics

About the Author

ALEXANDER ANDRASON, PhD in Semitic Languages, University Complutense in Madrid, Spain (2010); PhD in African Languages, Stellenbosch University, South Africa (2016), is a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of African Languages at Stellenbosch University. The scope of his research includes disciplines such as linguistics, cognitive science, and complexity theory. Within the field of linguistics, he specializes in cognitive linguistics, grammaticalization theory, and typology. He speaks more than twenty living languages and has an extensive knowledge of various ancient or classical languages. His language interests include the Indo-European, Afro-Asiatic, Niger-Congo, Nilotic, and Khoe families. He also works on the documentation and preservation of endangered, minority languages, e.g., Wymysorys (Poland), Arusa (Tanzania), and Tjwao (Zimbabwe).
e-mail: andrason@sun.ac.za

JUAN-PABLO VITA graduated with a degree in Geography and History (specializing in Ancient History and Archaeology) from the University of Murcia (Spain) in 1990. In  1995, he received his PhD from the same university with a thesis on the army of the ancient Syrian Kingdom of Ugarit. He complemented his education on Ancient Near Eastern Studies in Madrid (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas-CSIC), Leuven (Unversiteit te Leuven), Paris (École des Langues et Civilisations de l’Orient Ancien at the Institut Catholique; École Pratique des Hautes Études; Institut d’Études Sémitiques) and Berlin (Freie Universität Berlin; Humboldt Unviersität Berlin; Vorderasiatisches Museum). He was granted a Tenure Scientist position at the CSIC (Madrid) in 1999. His main lines of research focus on the study of the languages and the socio-economic history of Syria-Palestine in the second millennium BCE. Within this area, he has carried out an important part of his work on the text of Ugarit, Emar and El-Amarna, and has published works such as El ejército de Ugarit (Madrid 1995), Das Kanaano- Akkadische der Amarnazeit (LOS I/1, Münster 2010; in collaboration with Josef Tropper), Canaanite Scribes in the Amarna Letters, AOAT 406, Münster 2015, or “Contact Languages of the Ancient Near East – Three more Case Studies (Ugaritic-Hurrian, Hurro-Akkadian and Canaano-Akkadian),” Journal of Language Contact 9/2 (2016): 293–334 (in collaboration with Alexander Andrason).
e-mail: juanpablo.vita@cchs.csic.es

 

Clément Steuer
The Role of the Intellectuals and Political Process of the Wasaṭiyya Current in pre-2011 Egypt……………………………………………………………………………………389–407

The relationship between the Egyptian al-Wasaṭ party (a splinter group consisting of some “Moderate Islamists” – islāmiyyūn mu‘tadilūn – who left the Muslim Brotherhood in order to form a party of their own in 1996) and the “New Islamist” thinkers has often been described as a mere process of “influence” of the latter on the former. This article argues that this relationship is, instead, better understood if analyzed in terms of “appropriation.” It focuses on the Wasaṭiyya party as it appeared on the political scene during the fifteen years preceding the Egyptian revolution of 2011, and defines this notion as a “space of theorization,” at the intersection of the intellectual, political and religious fields. The “New Islamist” thinkers were expressing their political ideas in this specific space, in the attempt to develop their political ideology and influence some political actors. Parallel to this, the al-Wasaṭ politicians were using this same space to gain intellectual legitimacy and pick up the elements that could forge a political programme. In so doing, they were carefully choosing, adapting and translating the ideas of their intellectual mentors, in order to fit their own concerns and the logic of the political field they were willing to belong to.

KEYWORDS
Wasaṭiyya | al-Wasaṭ | politics | intellectuals | Islamism | Egypt

About the Author

CLÉMENT STEUER is a political scientist and researcher at the Oriental Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences. His work focuses primarily on the Egyptian political party system. From 2015 to 2017, he was head of the “Governance and Public Policies” department of the Centre for Economic, Legal, and Social Study and Documentation (CEDEJ in French) in Cairo, Egypt. He has published several articles in international peer-reviewed journals on Egyptian politics and political regime. His PhD dissertation, on the al-Wasaṭ party, has been published in French under the title Le Wasat sous Moubarak: L’émergence contrariée d’un groupe d’entrepreneurs politiques en Égypte (Clermond-Ferrand: Fondation Varenne / L.G.D.J., 2013).
e-mail: steuer.orient.cas.cz

Muthukumar Manickam and Vinod Balakrishnan
Historicising the Banal: Media Representation of India’s North-East as Discriminatory Pedagogy Begetting Subnational Discourse………………..409–438

This paper examines media representation and its role in manifesting a banal rhetoric that compels a subnational discourse to emerge from the quotidian. The everyday discrimination experienced by the people of India’s North-East, who migrate and live in the metropolitan cities of India, exacerbates a rupture with the sign of national pedagogy, the constitution. The national discourse simultaneously appropriates these banal fractures, rendering them incidences of negligible importance. Thus, the quotidian sphere becomes the temporal site for the contentious interaction between the subnational and national discourses. When the quotidian events obtain a criticality in relation to their representation in the media, they become transcripts of everyday reality. Thus, the television becomes a site where the representations of everyday subnational ruptures reach the wider ideological and territorial space of the nation-state, transcending its immediate space of emanation. Eventually, the archive of subnational discourse is constructed from the inevitable result of textualization by the media. These media transcripts come to rest in the subnational archive with a viability that allows them to be deployed as the building blocks of a subnational history, which, in turn, deconstructs the romantic assertions of national historiography. Thus, in these historiographical sites, the discursive practices constitute the subnational archive that must be of interest to the Foucauldian historian who chooses the epistemological approach of archaeology. The authors elucidate this process by deploying seven tele-media texts with respect to the nation-state, drawn from two different locations.

KEYWORDS
banal subnationalism | quotidian discrimination | cosmopolitan centre | media representation | history | archives

About the Author

MANICKAM MUTHUKUMAR is a Research Scholar in the Department of Humanities, the National Institute of Technology, Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu. He specialises in the area of nationalism, with a focus on the representation of the North-East. His studies focus on the points of intersection between nationalism and subnationalism.
e-mail: mkmuthukumar0@gmail.com

VINOD BALAKRISHNAN is an Associate Professor, the Department of Humanities, the National Institute of Technology, Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu. He earned his Ph.D. with the thesis “Popular Fiction and the Use of History” from Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala. He teaches Creative Writing and Communication. He is a motivational speaker, practising poet, and yoga enthusiast. His areas of specialism include life writing, the nation, Indian writing in English, and cultural representation.
e-mail: winokrish@yahoo.co.uk; vinod@nitt.edu

Jack Meng-Tat Chia
Who is Tua Pek Kong? The Cult of Grand Uncle in Malaysia and Singapore…………………………………………………………………………………………..439–460

The arrival and settlement of Chinese migrants contributed to the spread of Chinese religious beliefs and practices from China to Southeast Asia. However, the arrival of Chinese beliefs and practices was more complex than being just a single-direction dissemination process. Chinese migrants not only transferred popular deities and native-place gods from China to Southeast Asia, but also invented their own gods in the migrant society. This article builds on Robert Hymes’s concept of the “personal model of divinity” to examine the multifaceted nature of the Tua Pek Kong cult in Malaysia and Singapore. It argues that in the absence of an imperial bureaucracy in Southeast Asia, the “personal model” aptly explains the proliferation of Tua Pek Kong’s cult among the Overseas Chinese communities. Tua Pek Kong was far from being a standardized god in a bureaucratic pantheon of Chinese deities; the deity was considered as a “personal being,” offering protection to those who relied on him. This article presents the multifaceted cult of Tua Pek Kong in three forms: a symbol of sworn brotherhood, a Sino-Malay deity, and a Sinicized god.

KEYWORDS
Chinese Diaspora | Chinese Religions | migration | Malaysia | Singapore | Tua Pek Kong

About the Author

JACK MENG-TAT CHIA is a Senior Tutor in the Department of History at the National University of Singapore and currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Buddhist Studies, the University of California, Berkeley. His research focuses on Southeast Asia-China interactions, Buddhism, Chinese popular religion, and overseas Chinese history. He is the co-editor of Living with Myths in Singapore (2017) and has published articles in journals such as Asian Ethnology, China Quarterly, Journal of Chinese Religions, Material Religion, New Zealand Journal of Asian Studies, and SOJOURN. He is currently working on the manuscript for a book, tentatively titled Diaspora’s Dharma: Buddhism and Modernity across the South China Sea.
e-mail: jackchia@nus.edu.sg

Review Articles

 

Luděk Vacín
News on the Ur Lament………………………………………………………………………461–478

About the Author

LUDĚK VACÍN (PhD from SOAS, University of London) is an Assyriologist focusing on Sumerian literature, royal ideology, and intellectual history of late 3rd and early 2nd millennium BCE Mesopotamia. Having spent four years at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science and at the Free University in Berlin, Germany, he now works at the Philosophical Faculty of the University of Hradec Králové, Czechia. He is the editor of Ancient Near Eastern Studies in Memory of Blahoslav Hruška (Dresden, 2011), and the author of several studies on Sumerian royal hymnography, as well as of an edition of the Cuneiform Texts in the Náprstek Museum Prague (in Studies Jana Součková-Siegelová, Leiden and Boston, 2016).
e-mail: ludek.vacin@uhk.cz

Book Reviews and Notes

 

Carrie Rosefsky Wickham.  The Muslim Brotherhood: Evolution of an Islamist Movement.
(Clément Steuer) …………………………………………………………………………………479–481

Knut A. Jacobsen (Editor-in-Chief), and Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan (Associate Editors). Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism. Volume V: Religious Symbols, Hinduism and Migration: Contemporary Communities outside South Asia, Some Modern Religious Groups and Teachers; Volume VI: Index.
(Jan Filipský) ………………………………………………………………………………………482–484

Allen Chun. Forget Chineseness: On the Geopolitics of Cultural Identification.
(Filip Kraus) ………………………………………………………………………………………..485–487

 

Our Contributors…………………………………………………………………………………. 489–491