27 results for Allen, Brenda

  • Emperors of the text: Change and cultural survival in the poetry of Philip Larkin and Carol Ann Duffy

    Allen, Brenda (1999)

    Doctoral thesis
    University of Canterbury Library

    Philip Larkin and Carol Ann Duffy have been, and are, regarded as a step ahead, as the voices that aid other citizens in their struggle to delineate the nature of their concerns about their society and the changes that must be coped with, internalised and incorporated into daily life. Because they are living in times of change, Larkin and Duffy are forced to find new ways to preserve their cultural identity that are not predicated on traditions that are dying or being superseded. The most startling of these changes, however, also affects Britain at the national and international level and in this thesis I examine the writing (including archival material) and life of these poets to argue that their efforts to deal with change may be seen as mirroring the stance of their nation, since in a nation with an elected government there must be, at some level, approval for and participation in, the modus operandi of that government. That these practices are imperialistic can come as no surprise, but ideas and practices of imperialism have changed. Thus it is that the older of the poets, Philip Larkin, harks back to the time of British Imperial glory, and the younger, Carol Ann Duffy, maintains a watching and speaking brief based on humanistic values of egalitarianism. Larkin, although he purports to be liberal, especially in matters he regards as the merely conventional, fights against the very structures that could be helpful to him and prioritises the sustaining of a past that has no future except as memory and text. His refusal to conform to the social and canonical demands of his younger days, however, ensures that he experiences ambivalence toward most of the structures he criticises as well as toward those he embraces. Nevertheless, his directionless rebellion paves the way for Carol Ann Duffy to move freely between the canonical and the vernacular, in terms of diction and subject matter. To this, Duffy has added her own determination to interrogate meaning, and to represent a culture that is changing by de constructing and reconstructing canonical form in a way that Larkin did not. The first two chapters of this thesis are about the importance of data and archive, especially the written word, to ideas of the British Empire, and Larkin's over-reliance on archive in his own life. The dysfunctional subjects of Duffy's poems, who display similar reliance on data and archive, are then discussed and related to her own, contrasting awareness of the difference between data and knowledge. The third chapter, in two parts, demonstrates that the imperialist practices of each poet are carried over into the world of personal relationships. Because of his more rigid attitudes, Larkin does not achieve transcendence in this sphere, but Duffy demonstrates that moments of rapture are possible. The last three chapters deal with the most prominent features of imperialism: religion, territory and war. The chapter on war, in particular, is based on archival material that Larkin wrote during or about war, that he saw fit to keep private until after his death; and the chapter also utilises Duffy's lesser-known early works. The conclusions of these chapters confirm those of the previous chapters.

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  • Reconciling the Abject in Two Australian films: Look Both Ways (Sarah Watt 2005) and Kenny (Clayton Jacobson, 2006)

    Allen, Brenda (2012-04)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    In my readings of two Australian films Kenny (dir. Clayton Jacobson, 2006) and Look Both Ways (dir. Sarah Watt, 2005) I seek to understand why Australian post-settler identities continue to be problematic, fragmented, insecure; and more importantly, why many hesitate to move away from ideologies and practices that perpetuate colonialist-style outcomes. At the same time, I show that the focus of concern in my case studies and in their contexts of production is on issues of Australian-ness rather than dealing with the older cultural cringe arising from Australia???s marginal position in relation to Britain and America. I conclude that the maturity and confidence of the contexts of production and treatment of form and content in my case studies not only shows the struggle but also suggests a growing acceptance of the past and foreshadows possible steps forward.

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  • Anticipating Koenraad Kuiper's Timepieces

    Allen, Brenda (1997)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Takahe, Christchurch: Takahe Collective Trust. Vol 32, December 1997, p61 (inside back cover) (invited review)

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  • Identity and Cultural Salience in Illustrious Energy

    Allen, Brenda (2008)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Illustrious Energy (Leon Narby, 1997) tells the story of two Chinese sojourners in the Otago goldfields in the 1890s, well after the gold is gone. It is a remarkable film for its cinematography but also because of the level of research that underpins the script. Furthermore, in 1987 no other country had acknowledged its Chinese sojourners in this way and most New Zealanders did not know about the sojourners. The film also contains footage of land in Otago now under water, and its relationship to New Zealand culture has been solidified with the status of the set, an actual miner's hut, since designated an historical place. This article brings these strands together to give a reading of three identity positions available to the Chinese characters: that of settler, sojourner and nomad, and argues that the film is worthy of a re-release, that it should be returned to New Zealand and made available to the New Zealand public.

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  • The Court Jester's Last Laugh: from modern to medieval through The Castle

    Allen, Brenda (2008)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    This essay explores the ways in which certain kinds of humour, in particular kitsch, hyperbole and reversal are used to reference older British cultural forms such as the castle and folk tale. The article goes on to argue that these references have the effect of legitimating an identity position that has long been the butt of Australian humour and ignored by serious artists, that of the white, suburbanite.

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  • Family, Friendship and Work in Ratatouille

    Allen, Brenda (2009)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    he article discusses and reviews the film 'Ratatouille', an animation film with expressive characters. The representations of a variety of family structures and the necessity for adolescents to learn to negotiate a workplace where one is not loved or esteemed is highlighted.

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  • The Man Alone, the Black Sheep and the Bad Apple: Squeaky Wheels of New Zealand Cinema

    Allen, Brenda (2011)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    In New Zealand literature and film the literary trope of the Man Alone, a recurring feature throughout much of the twentieth century, rests on modernist, colonialist assumptions that tensions between white settler (Pakeha) men???s attachment to their ancestral roots and feelings of belonging in New Zealand trouble their psyche. Typically these men are dysfunctional, unhappy, violent, and self-absorbed. In its original form the trope is pass?? and ripe for parody. In this article I briefly outline the traditional trope, then provide readings of two recent New Zealand films, Black Sheep (Jonathan King, 2006) and Eagle vs Shark (Taika Waititi, 2007), to identify the ways in which contemporary issues of identity and biculturalism permeate contemporary treatment of the trope.

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  • 'Our Bay of Ensigns and Other 'race' Relations' by Bernard Gadd

    Allen, Brenda (2001)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Invited review in cultural studies section of Takahe; includes readings of several poems. Cultural editor: Dr Casandra Fusco.

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  • Fast food or fine nourishment?: American animated cinema, Ratatouille and cuisine

    Allen, Brenda (2011)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Animated texts within American cinema carry practitioners??? contributions to serious discussions of animation which have not been systematically decoded or discussed. This paper analyses twentieth-century shorts to identify longstanding issues and concepts, then presents a case study of Ratatouille (dir. Brad Bird, 2007), a film that, by hailing cuisine as a fellow art, encodes a complex exposition on contemporary animation within mainstream American film. The film points to the neglect or inconsistency of criticism, the film industry and art, and argues that animated cinema is as rich and as worthy of recognition as the art of cuisine. The discussion strongly indicates the importance of textual and contextual analysis of mainstream animated texts as a basis for further scholarship.

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  • A Sheep, a Shark and a Shaggy Dog: the Magical Discourses of Postcolonialism in New Zealand Film

    Allen, Brenda (2011)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    In this paper I begin with an examination of the ways in which a magical discourse is invoked to carry the potagonists of Black Sheep (Jonathan King 2006) and Eagle vs Shark (Taika Waititi 2007) across their cultural cringe towards an appreciation of their homes. I will relate this to the way the dysfunctional father-son relationships stand as metaphor for that of the antipodean and its accomanying power relations of north-south and centre-margin. I will then compare these narratives with the UK/NZ co-production Dean Spanley (Toa Fraser 2008) set in England and referencing India, a northern but clearly foreign part of the British Empire.

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  • The View From Down Under: Narrating the Antipodean in Australian Feature Film

    Allen, Brenda (2011)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    In order to secure funding and to market their works, Australasian filmmakers must have an eye to the international markets even as they seek to represent the local. This is complicated firstly by notions of the antipodean that render Australasia exotic to the mainstream and secondly by postcolonial re-readings of historical colonial figures. For instance, Governor Grey, once a hero in New Zealand, has been ???deemed responsible for starting the war in Taranaki in the 1860s??? (David-Ives 2008, 16). The question arises: how do post settlers tell stories that reflect themselves and will travel when the hero???s journey, so essential to both history and Hollywood narrative style, is associated with colonial exploration and exploitation, and the warrior, the authentic first nation hero, does not belong to them? In this discussion I will tease out these issues with close reference to two Australian films, Look Both Ways (dir. Sarah Watt 2005) and Kenny (dir. Clayton Jacobsen, 2006), to examine how the journey and the protagonist garner empathy while refusing clich??d notions of the heroic.

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  • The social and cultural functions of jazz in 'Good Night and Good Luck', 2005.

    Allen, Brenda (2010)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    In Edward Murrow???s 1958 speech to The Radio and Television News Directors Association he takes journalists to task saying that they need to keep a more watchful eye on media networks and companies. George Clooney???s film, Good Night, and Good Luck (2005), opens with a jazz soundtrack then the start of Murrow???s speech before segueing into a flashback of the events leading up to Murrow???s presentation of the famous television expos?? of McCarthy, the broadcast itself, McCarthy???s rebuttal and the immediate aftermath. The film closes with a return to the speech thus implying that the flashback was the content of the speech and securing Murrow???s ownership of the narrative. The narrative is punctuated with jazz performances by Diane Reeves who provides a black, female presence and voice in an historical event where, as in the film, most of the participants were white men, and the film closes with credits over a jazz soundtrack. This bookending implies a link between the use of jazz and the American film industry. Does Clooney???s film carry an admonition to American filmmakers that we might compare with Murrow???s speech to journalists? This paper argues that jazz is used to provide a structuring device that separates the film from Hollywood style, gives a subversive political counterpoint to McCarthyism and resonates with contemporary audiences conscious of the vulnerability of their citizen rights in post 9/11 America. The paper then goes on to tease out some of the links between the film as cultural and industrial artefact and aspects and American identity and citizenship.

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  • Even the Food has Character: Animation, Food and Metaphor in Ratatouille (3,500 words)

    Allen, Brenda (2010)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    Ratatouille (dir Brad Bird, 2007) is one of a few fully animated films included in lists of 'foodie' films. One critic declares that 'Even the food has character'. But aspects of the film trouble a straightforward reading of haute cuisine as art and of the chef as artist. In this paper I read Ratatouille not just as a discussion on art, as many have already done, but as offering layer of subtext where cuisine acts as a metaphor enabling a complex discussion of the state and status of movie animation in relation to artistic canons and to the imperatives of the movie industry.

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  • Passing the Post: New Zealand Cinema and Non-Indigenous New Zealand Identity

    Allen, Brenda (2009)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    Is a stable post-colonial identity possible for non-indigenous, post settler populations?

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  • Illustrious Energy (dir. Leon Narbey, 1988: The Sojourner, the Settler, the Nomad and the Exile

    Allen, Brenda (2007)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    available at electonic address, above.

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  • A collaborative approach to integrating academic and information literacy into a Media Film and Television undergraduate curriculum

    Allen, Brenda; Zdravkovic, Neda; Cowan, Hamish; Etheridge, Sarah (2015-11)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    The research: This case study describes how an informal multi-professional collaboration emerged and, due to shared expertise and openness, effectively achieved academic and information literacy (AIL) integration into the academic curricula to produce successful outcomes for teaching and learning. Firstly, we present insights on how we broadened specialized individual work to include innovation and responsibility for departmental and curriculum needs. Secondly, we explain how, within a hierarchical setting, synergies in shared expertise among team members helped to develop methodologies applied to deepen our understanding of what Media Film and Television (MFT) undergraduate students' learning needs are. Lastly, we will address insights into our own working practices, assessment design, theoretical frameworks applied and responses to contingencies.

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  • Integrating International Students into the Classroom

    Allen, Brenda (2007-07-05)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    In this invited oral presentation I outline how staff at the department in which I teach work to assist international students to overcome study shock and settle into study at the University of Auckland. The presentation included statistics gathered in the past three years.

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  • Cinema of Unease

    Allen, Brenda (2012)

    Book item
    The University of Auckland Library

    Cinema of Unease By Brenda Allen The documentary Cinema of Unease: A PersonalJourney by Sam Neill (1995) was written and directed by Sam Neill and Judy ...

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  • Illustrious Energy

    Allen, Brenda (2012)

    Book item
    The University of Auckland Library

    Illustrious Energy By Brenda Allen Illustrious Energy (Leon Narbey, 1987) was filmed on location in the rugged, unforgiving Otago high country of southern ...

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  • Illustrious Energy (dir. Leon Narbey, 1988): The Sojourner, the Settler, the Nomad and the Exile

    Allen, Brenda (2006-11-16)

    Conference item
    The University of Auckland Library

    I argue that Illustrious Energy is more culturally embedded now than it was on its release in 1988. Then I examine the position of Kim (sojourner), Wong (settler) and Chan (nomad) and reflect on that of the film, itself an exile in America.

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