Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://www.um.edu.mt/library/oar/handle/123456789/27654
Title: Again, Plato’s Garden, again : a response
Authors: Aquilina, Aaron
Keywords: Arts -- Malta
Literature -- Malta
Culture -- Malta
Issue Date: 2018-02
Publisher: University of Malta. Department of English
Citation: Aquilina, A. (2018). Again, Plato’s Garden, again : a response. Antae Journal, 5(1), 101-119.
Abstract: In this response to the preceding double-issue on “Malta and the Arts”, I undertake its re-reading in light of both its reflections on Malta as well as the concerns of this present issue; i.e. the space that Malta occupies—whether geographically, politically, or economically—and the possibilities of its displacement. Following an evaluation of the journal antae, alongside its cultural and academic context, I assess the questions implicitly bound within the eleventh issue: local readership and critical thought; insularity and familiarity; definitions of “Malteseness”, Maltese character, and Maltese literature; the endemic and the indigenous; and, ultimately, contemporary understandings of Malta, its history, and its relation to the arts. On this latter point, I engage with ideas that fuel endeavours such as V18, arguing that not only is its execution troubling to the Maltese academic and artistic world, but also its very conception, as a drive which seeks to tyrannically define Maltese art in order to market it, creating a “local” that must be collided with the “global”. This reduction of the local can be read as seeking to impose a classical unity to the idea of Malta which, I argue, is—through virtue of being an island, among other things—always in between and at its own shorelines. To illustrate this, I turn to exportations of Malta, as exemplified by James Basson’s winning entry at the 2017 Chelsea Flower Show, and read antae in light of Platonic ideas around the “garden” in order to better understand the journal’s potentialities of placing and displacing. In the last section, this essay re-reads certain aspects of the eleventh issue’s contributions both in terms of the above concerns as well as to demonstrate the persistence and resistance of the act of gardening against the (under)mining proclivities of those that seek to define Malta or its art.
URI: https://www.um.edu.mt/library/oar//handle/123456789/27654
Appears in Collections:Antae Journal, Volume 5, Issue 1
Antae Journal, Volume 5, Issue 1

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
Again_Platos_Garden_again_a_response_2018.pdf580.52 kBAdobe PDFView/Open


Items in OAR@UM are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.