MemberChristopher Pexa

Christopher Pexa specializes in 19th and 20th century Native American and U.S. literatures, Native American studies, and settler colonial studies, with an emphasis on questions of indigenous ethics, sovereignty, and nationalism. He is completing a book, under contract with University of Minnesota Press, entitled Translated Nation: Rewriting the Dakota Oyate, that explores the ambivalent ways in which allotment-era Dakota authors played to white regimes of legibility while at the same time honoring tribal common sense and producing a contemporary Dakota nationhood. Pexa’s essays have appeared or are forthcoming in PMLA, čazo Ša Review, SAIL, and MELUS. He is also a published poet and is currently working on a book of prose poetry, entitled Throne of Horses, about the afterlives of Indian boarding schools.

DepositHebrews 5:7 as the Cry of the Davidic Sufferer

This article proposes a better source for the Son’s cry in Hebrews 5:7. It begins by surveying sources previous scholars have identified, including Jesus’ cry in Gethsemane and Golgotha, several Psalms, and the Maccabean martyr literature. It is then argued that these background sources for the language are insufficient. Instead the author of Hebrews has an entire motif from the Psalter as his informing source: the Davidic figure that cries out in trust to be delivered from a death-like experience. Firstly, the motif of the Davidic righteous suffering in the LXX Psalms is demonstrated. Secondly, Hebrews’ use of the Messianic royal figure is demonstrated and thirdly, Hebrews 5:7 as a portrait of the Christ who cries out for deliverance is demonstrated. Thus, Hebrews 5:7 sees the Son as the Davidic king who is the true representative human exercising trust in YHWH, bringing to fulfilment the theme from various Psalms.

DepositThe Concept of Death in John Donne and Sohrab Sepehri: A Comparative Study

Death has always permeated human’s thoughts at all levels. This preoccupation with death is manifested in the realm of literature. John Donne is one of the artists whose obsession with death is universally recognized. The contemporary Iranian poet, Sohrab Sepehri in some of his poems employs the subject, too. Unlike Donne, Sepehri is not known as a ‘death poet.’ Although he lives in a turbulent period in the history of Iran, he is not influenced by his immediate condition. While the English poet is inconsistent in his treatment of death, Sepehri is consistent in his treatment of death. Sepehri’s consistency in the treatment of death has something to do with his religious beliefs. The reason behind Sepehri’s consistency in treating death as a positive phenomenon is his familiarity with the Islamic Sufism and eastern mysticisms.

DepositGirls Playing Persephone (in Marriage and Death)

Arguably, the most famous myth told about Persephone is her abduction and marriage to Hades. The story clearly articulates the strong connection between marriage and death, and this episode became significant in both literature and religious practice in the wider classical Greek world. Reference to the story of Persephone’s abduction came to be used as a shorthand for evoking this connection, particularly in myth. This paper discusses two particular ways that Persephone’s narrative was used in marriage and death. I examine the pre-marriage offerings to Persephone at Lokroi, in southern Italy, and the tradition of Athenian girls who died unmarried being buried as brides. These cultic instances frame a discussion of Brides of Hades, particularly in tragedy. Overall, I conclude that these girls do not attempt to replace Persephone, but rather to imitate her: the ‘play the role’ of Persephone at various stages of her own abduction and marriage story.

DepositThe Night Rabbi Aqiba Slept With Two Women

In the rabbinic worldview, man goes through life surrounded by temptation. The world is a place where temptation lurks on every street corner, at every table, and at every moment. For the rabbis, Torah – both Written and Oral – is the solution to controlling the yeẓer (יצר), the inclination to act on one’s desires. The ability to control one’s yeẓer is essential for proper rabbinic comportment. Unfortunately for women, according to the rabbis, only men are capable of controlling their yeẓer. Given that only men could control their yeẓer, women often appear in rabbinic literature in the role of the temptress, seeking to seduce men into transgressing social, ethical, legal, and theological practices. All of this helps to explain how Rabbi Aqiba found himself in bed with two women.

DepositTransnational Film and the Politics of Becoming: Negotiating East Asian Identity in Hong Kong Night Club and Moonlight Express

Recent years have witnessed the growth of a body of literature concerned with what Sheldon Hsiao-peng Lu has termed “Chinese cinemas,”1 sparked by the increased international visibility of films from mainland China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, and characterized by an emerging interest in the ways that such works negotiate both “the triumphantly universal and the resiliency particular”2 in their unique situatedness within both regional Chinese and global media markets. In the context of the 1997 return of Hong Kong to mainland China, this emphasis has engendered significant critical attention to issues of local Hong Kong identity within a dramatically altered political, social, and cultural climate, represented by two discursive trends that at once implicitly and explicitly reference 1997 as the seminal turning-point of Hong Kong’s media industries.

DepositForbidden Texts on the Western Frontier: The Christian Apocrypha in North American Perspectives. Eugene, OR: Cascade, 2015 (Introduction and Table of Contents).

“Forbidden Texts on the Western Frontier: The Christian Apocrypha from North American Perspectives” features papers presented at the second York Christian Apocrypha Symposium held in September 2013 at York University in Toronto, Canada. The papers focus on what makes North American Christian Apocrypha scholarship unique, on what has come to define us on the world stage—such as the achievements of the so-called Harvard School (a major champion of the “Bauer Thesis,” which argues that heretical forms of Christianity preceded orthodox forms in some parts of the world in the early centuries), and the use of apocryphal gospels to reconstruct the life and teachings of Jesus. The symposium also considers new avenues of investigation into the Christian Apocrypha, including the examination of new texts, the application of new methodologies and approaches to the literature, and the use of electronic resources for manuscript research.

DepositJoseph, Jehoiachin, and Cyrus: On Book Endings, Exoduses and Exiles, and Yehudite/Judean Social Remembering

In a recent ZAW article, Michael Chan argues that II Reg 25,27-30 alludes to Gen 40-41, and that this allusion provides a hermeneutical key for understanding the purpose of II Reg 25,27-30 in an Enneateuchal context: it points to an imminent exodus, a return from exile and a gathering of diaspora in the promised land. This article picks up where Chan left off, in order to flesh out some of the implications of his contribution. It argues that remembering exodus at the end of II Reg included hope, as Chan says, but also struggles and failure, punishment and death. Exodus is multivocal. Likewise, the end of II Reg contributes to a multivocal discourse concerning Davidic kingship, which included the end of Chronicles and prophetic literature. The diminution of Davidic kingship in II Reg 25,27-30 is balanced by other perspectives. The article concludes with an observation on the import of this multivocality for Yehudite social memory.

DepositMuSO: Aggregation and Peer Review in Music

This Level I project will fund a two-day workshop at Texas A&M University for 15 software engineers, music librarians, music encoding specialists, and music scholars from the U.S., Canada and abroad that will lay the foundation to launch MuSO (Music Scholarship Online). Using the period-specific virtual research environments, or research nodes, of the Advanced Research Consortium (ARC) as templates, this workshop will establish methods for aggregating and evaluating digital projects in the fields of music analysis, culture, history and literature. The workshop will address the metadata needs for media such as musical scores and audio recordings, and it will establish a standard and process for peer reviewing the projects that contribute to and participate in MuSO. The funded workshop will therefore produce a list of changes to the ARC metadata guidelines as well as a method for evaluating digital projects in music.

Deposit“The Good War” Forever: Allied Area Bombardment and the Japanese-American Internment in US History Textbooks and Memory

Among the American people, the perception of the Second World War as the “good war” has persisted virtually unshaken for more than seven decades despite a plethora of scholarly literature criticizing and challenging this myth. While this continuity can be examined as a function of factors such as cultural depictions of the war and political pressure exerted by veterans’ interest groups, this piece argues, through an examination of pedagogical practices and a textbook survey contrasting treatments of area bombardment and the Japanese-American internment that high school history curricula for decades have lacked a critical perspective on our conduct abroad during the war. This sanitized depiction of our wartime experience signifies a missed opportunity for students to develop critical thinking skills on an international scale through the lens of history; it represents a missed opportunity to prepare the leaders of tomorrow to thoughtfully consider our nation’s role today in a world transformed by the forces of globalization.