Critical Theory

Brutalism
Achille Mbembe
Duke University Press - 27.00€ -  out of stock

In Brutalism, eminent social and critical theorist Achille Mbembe invokes the architectural aesthetic of brutalism to describe our moment, caught up in the pathos of demolition and production on a planetary scale.

Just as brutalist architecture creates an affect of overwhelming weight and destruction, Mbembe contends that contemporary capitalism crushes and dominates all spheres of existence. In our digital, technologically focused era, capitalism has produced a becoming-artificial of humanity and the becoming-human of machines. This blurring of the natural and artificial presents a planetary existential threat in which contemporary society’s goal is to precipitate the mutation of the human species into a condition that is at once plastic and synthetic.

Mbembe argues that Afro-diasporic thought presents the only solution for breaking the totalizing logic of contemporary capitalism: repairing that which is broken, developing a new planetary consciousness, and reforming a community of humans in solidarity with all living things.

Living with Ghosts: A Reader
Kj Abudu
Pace Gallery - 40.00€ -  out of stock

Living With Ghosts explores the ways the unresolved traumas of Africa’s colonial past, and its unfulfilled project of decolonisation, continue to haunt the present global order. The reader further expands on these complex ideas through philosophical, historical, and literary approaches. Reprinted texts by thinkers such as Achille Mbembe, C.L.R. James, and Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni explore the historical experiences of the African postcolony and the problematics of decolonisation. Meditations on artists including John Akomfrah and Abraham Oghobase provide engaging entry points to their multi-layered artistic practices. Also featured are images of artworks in the exhibition and an in-depth conversation between Bouchra Khalili and KJ Abudu.

Texts by Achille Mbembe, Jacques Derrida, C.L.R. James, Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni, KJ Abudu, Emmanuel Iduma, Walter D. Mignolo, Avery F. Gordon, Adjoa Armah, Joshua Segun-Lean. Conversation with Bouchra Khalili and KJ Abudu.

A Queer Theory of the State
Samuel Clowes Huneke
Floating Opera Press - 16.00€ -

How queer theory can wed its critically anti-normative impulses to the empirical need for a state.

Queer theory has often been hesitant to align itself with a politics of the state, approaching it with a negative or pragmatic framework. A Queer Theory of the State offers a more optimistic perspective. Rather than eschew engagement with democratic theorizing, the historian Samuel Clowes Huneke asks how queer theory can wed its critically anti-normative impulses to the empirical need for a state. In answering this question, Huneke shows how the state is an integral component of a politics that seeks to subvert and undo the oppression of queer lives.

Samuel Clowes Huneke is assistant professor of history at George Mason University. His first book, States of Liberation: Gay Men Between Dictatorship and Democracy in Cold War Germany (2022), won the Charles E. Smith Award for best book in European History from the European History Section of the Southern Historical Association. Huneke has written for Boston Review, the Washington Post, The Point, and the Los Angeles Review of Books.

Rage Assassine: Mettre Fin au Racisme
bell hooks
Éditions Divergences - 18.00€ -

Avant que Black Lives Matter et #MeToo ne viennent secouer l’Amérique et le monde occidental, bell hooks montrait, dans cet essai incisif, que l’abolition du racisme et l’éradication du sexisme vont de pair. Sans le féminisme, la lutte antiraciste reste une affaire d’hommes. Sans l’antiracisme, le féminisme s’expose à servir de courroie aux logiques de domination raciale. L'autrice insiste sur le bien-fondé de la rage qui anime les masses populaires et la jeunesse noire et sur la nécessité d’en faire un moteur de changement social radical. Elle propose une théorie et une pratique révolutionnaires, dont la fin est une communauté solidaire fondée sur l’égalité réelle et la volonté de tou.te.s de travailler au changement.

Traduit de l'anglais par Ségolène Guinard.

GLORIA JEAN WATKINS, connue sous son nom de plume BELL HOOKS, née en 1952, est une intellectuelle, féministe, et militante étasunienne. Elle a publié plus de trente livres et de nombreux articles, et est apparue dans plusieurs films documentaires. Traduits dans de nombreuses langues, ses ouvrages sont considérés parmi les plus importants sur la question aux Etats-Unis et suscitent un réel engouement en France depuis quelques années. Les éditions divergences ont déjà traduit et publié trois de ses ouvrages dont La volonté de changer et A propos d'amour.

Let Them Rot
Alenka Zupančič
Divided Publishing - 15.00€ -

What is the relation between family misfortune and desire? Why must we bury the dead? What is to come for those unburied? How to distinguish the endless stream of graphic violence from violence that goes straight to the bone? How does language make up not only the law, but also unwritten laws?

In Let Them Rot Alenka Zupančič takes up the ancient figure of Antigone and finds a blueprint for the politics of desire. Not desire as consumption, enjoying what is offered, but desire’s oblivion to what came before. Such politics says: “No, this world must end and I will be the embodiment of that end.” This is not self-satisfied destruction for destruction’s sake; it is existence with consequences beyond the predictable. Zupančič asks: “Why desire?” And this question of desire, which may be the only question, takes the form of a no that is also an “I".

"Zupančič’s ideas are fresh, as if they hailed from some open air beyond the clutter of current theoretical quarrels. This brilliant account of Sophocles’s Antigone breaks new ground for philosophy, psychoanalysis, and political and feminist theory." — Joan Copjec, Brown University

"Writing my book on Antigone, I thought: “There we go, the subject is closed—let’s go to sleep.” And then along came Zupančič with her take and compelled me to rethink everything I did. In other words—and this is difficult for me to say—she is better than me here." — Slavoj Žižek

Alenka Zupančič is a Slovenian philosopher and social theorist. She is a professor of philosophy and psychoanalysis at the European Graduate School and a researcher at the Institute of Philosophy at the Slovene Academy of Sciences and Arts. She is the author of many books, including What Is Sex? (MIT Press, 2017), The Odd One In: On Comedy(MIT Press, 2008), and Ethics of the Real: Kant and Lacan (Verso, 2000).

À perte de mère – Sur les routes atlantiques de l'esclavage
Saidiya Hartman
Brook - 22.00€ -

Saidiya Hartman traces the history of the Atlantic slave trade by recounting a journey she took along a slave route in Ghana. Following the trail of captives from the hinterland to the Atlantic coast, she reckons with the blank slate of her own genealogy and vividly dramatizes the effects of slavery on three centuries of African and African American history.

Saidiya Hartman, professor of English and comparative literature at Columbia University, is a scholar of African American literature and cultural history.

Preface by Maboula Soumahoro.

Translated from the English (American) by Maboula Soumahoro (original title: Lose Your Mother. A Journey Along The Atlantic Slave Route, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007).

Ordinary Affects
Kathleen Stewart
Duke University Press - 25.00€ -

Ordinary Affects is a singular argument for attention to the affective dimensions of everyday life and the potential that animates the ordinary. Known for her focus on the poetics and politics of language and landscape, the anthropologist Kathleen Stewart ponders how ordinary impacts create the subject as a capacity to affect and be affected. In a series of brief vignettes combining storytelling, close ethnographic detail, and critical analysis, Stewart relates the intensities and banalities of common experiences and strange encounters, half-spied scenes and the lingering resonance of passing events.

While most of the instances rendered are from Stewart’s own life, she writes in the third person in order to reflect on how intimate experiences of emotion, the body, other people, and time inextricably link us to the outside world.Stewart refrains from positing an overarching system—whether it’s called globalization or neoliberalism or capitalism—to describe the ways that economic, political, and social forces shape individual lives. Instead, she begins with the disparate, fragmented, and seemingly inconsequential experiences of everyday life to bring attention to the ordinary as an integral site of cultural politics. Ordinary affect, she insists, is registered in its particularities, yet it connects people and creates common experiences that shape public feeling.

Through this anecdotal history—one that poetically ponders the extremes of the ordinary and portrays the dense network of social and personal connections that constitute a life—Stewart asserts the necessity of attending to the fleeting and changeable aspects of existence in order to recognize the complex personal and social dynamics of the political world.

Ghostly Matters: Haunting and the Sociological Imagination
Avery F. Gordon
University of Minnesota Press - 25.00€ -

Drawing on a range of sources, including the fiction of Toni Morrison and Luisa Valenzuela (He Who Searches), Avery Gordon demonstrates that past or haunting social forces control present life in different and more complicated ways than most social analysts presume. Written with a power to match its subject, Ghostly Matters has advanced the way we look at the complex intersections of race, gender, and class as they traverse our lives in sharp relief and shadowy manifestations.

“Ghostly Matters immediately establishes Avery Gordon as a leader among her generation of social and cultural theorists in all fields. The sheer beauty of her language enhances an intellectual brilliance so daunting that some readers will mark the day they first read this book. One must go back many more years than most of us can remember to find a more important book.” —Charles Lemert

What Should We Do with Our Brain?
Catherine Malabou
Fordham University Press - 26.00€ -

Recent neuroscience, in replacing the old model of the brain as a single centralized source of control, has emphasized “plasticity,” the quality by which our brains develop and change throughout the course of our lives. Our brains exist as historical products, developing in interaction with themselves and with their surroundings.

Hence there is a thin line between the organization of the nervous system and the political and social organization that both conditions and is conditioned by human experience. Looking carefully at contemporary neuroscience, it is hard not to notice that the new way of talking about the brain mirrors the management discourse of the neo-liberal capitalist world in which we now live, with its talk of decentralization, networks, and flexibility. Consciously or unconsciously, science cannot but echo the world in which it takes place.

In the neo-liberal world, “plasticity” can be equated with “flexibility”—a term that has become a buzzword in economics and management theory. The plastic brain would thus represent just another style of power, which, although less centralized, is still a means of control.

In this book, Catherine Malabou develops a second, more radical meaning for plasticity. Not only does plasticity allow our brains to adapt to existing circumstances, it opens a margin of freedom to intervene, to change those very circumstances. Such an understanding opens up a newly transformative aspect of the neurosciences.

In insisting on this proximity between the neurosciences and the social sciences, Malabou applies to the brain Marx’s well-known phrase about history: people make their own brains, but they do not know it. This book is a summons to such knowledge.

The Ends of Performance
Peggy Phelan and Jill Lane
New York University Press - 30.00€ -  out of stock

A broad and inclusive volume of the celebrations and critiques of performance arts.

Focusing on the living arts—dance, theatre, music, performance art, ritual, and popular entertainment—performance studies expands our understanding of "performance" as both a vital artistic practice and a means by which to understand social and cultural processes. Bridging the gap between cultural studies, performing arts, and anthropology, performance studies explores myriad ways in which performance creates meaning and shapes our everyday lives.

The broadest and most inclusive volume to date, The Ends of Performance both celebrates and critiques the institutionalization of the field. Only recently has the field given keen attention to the interpretive force and consequences of performance events, and it is these consequences that the The Ends of Performance articulates. Here performance studies illuminates the complex social and cultural formations of our time--the impact of virtual technology, the racialized discourses of legal and cultural citizenship, the impact of new medical discourses, and the medicalization of the body. Featuring work by leading theorists such as Joseph Roach, Diana Taylor, and Richard Schechner, excursions into performative writing by Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick and Della Pollock, and texts by performance artists Orlan and Deb Margolin, The Ends of Performance illuminates the provocative intellectual ends which motivate these varied approaches to performing writing, and to writing performance.

Meeting the Universe Halfway
Karen Barad
Duke University Press - 34.00€ -  out of stock

Meeting the Universe Halfway is an ambitious book with far-reaching implications for numerous fields in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities. In this volume, Karen Barad, theoretical physicist and feminist theorist, elaborates her theory of agential realism. Offering an account of the world as a whole rather than as composed of separate natural and social realms, agential realism is at once a new epistemology, ontology, and ethics. The starting point for Barad’s analysis is the philosophical framework of quantum physicist Niels Bohr. Barad extends and partially revises Bohr’s philosophical views in light of current scholarship in physics, science studies, and the philosophy of science as well as feminist, poststructuralist, and other critical social theories. In the process, she significantly reworks understandings of space, time, matter, causality, agency, subjectivity, and objectivity.

In an agential realist account, the world is made of entanglements of “social” and “natural” agencies, where the distinction between the two emerges out of specific intra-actions. Intra-activity is an inexhaustible dynamism that configures and reconfigures relations of space-time-matter. In explaining intra-activity, Barad reveals questions about how nature and culture interact and change over time to be fundamentally misguided. And she reframes understanding of the nature of scientific and political practices and their “interrelationship.” Thus she pays particular attention to the responsible practice of science, and she emphasizes changes in the understanding of political practices, critically reworking Judith Butler’s influential theory of performativity. Finally, Barad uses agential realism to produce a new interpretation of quantum physics, demonstrating that agential realism is more than a means of reflecting on science; it can be used to actually do science.

Toward a Transindividual Self (2nd edition)
Ana Vujanović, Bojana Cvejić
Archive Books - 20.00€ -

A book that examines the process of performing the self, distinctive for the formation of the self in Western neoliberal societies in the 21st century. It approaches the self from a transdisciplinary angle where political and cultural anthropology, performance studies and dramaturgy intersect.

Starting from their concern with the crisis of the social, which coincides with the rise of individualism, Vujanović and Cvejić critically untangle individualist modes of performing the self, such as possessive, aesthetic, and autopoietic individualisms. However, their critique does not make for an argument for collectivism as a socially more viable alternative to individualism. Instead, it confronts them with the more fundamental problem of ontogenesis: how is that which distinguishes me as an individual formed in the first place? This question marks a turning point in the study, where it steps back into the process of individuation, prior to, and in excess of, the individual. 

The process of individuation, however, encompasses biological, social, and technological conditions of becoming whose real potential is transindividual, or more specifically, social transformation. A ‘theater of individuation’ (Gilbert Simondon) captures the dramaturgical stroke by which the authors investigate social relations (like solidarity and de-alienation) in which the self actualizes its transindividual dimension. This epistemic intervention into ontogenesis allows them to expand the horizon of transindividuation in an array of tangible social, aesthetic and political acts and practices. As with every horizon, the transindividual may not be closely at hand; however, it is certainly within reach, and the book encourages the reader to approach it.

"Towards a Transindividual Self is an ambitious and capacious effort to theorize a new way to approach collectivity for political purposes through the lens of performance. Convinced that the current neoliberal conjuncture has only heightened a form of capitalist individualism that blocks notions of the social, the authors aim to show that a "transindividual formation of the self can bring about different courses of action and a more socially driven imagination." Transindividuation, they assure us, shows how "we form ourselves on the basis of interdependence, sharing, commonality, as well as indispensability of the individual as the agent of creativity/ knowledge, freedom, and change, who 'possibilizes' their own conditions of formation." 
— Professor Janelle Reinelt (University of Warwick), co-editor of Critical Theory and Performance (University of Michigan, 2006)

"Perhaps the most striking thing about this book is the manner in which it is able to engage with multiple discourses from political theory to aesthetics. In this way it both follows the ambitious scope of Simondon’s work on individuation, and expands into areas that Simondon did not cover, most notably politics and cultural politics, which is the book’s central concern. Rather than ask the question is the individual imagined or real, an effect of social relations or their distortion, the focus on the transindividual makes it possible to grasp individuation as a process: “Instead of pondering how the passage from one to many occurs, individuation permits us to immediately trace a bidimensional process in which both individual persons and the collectivities they form are altered. Another meaning of the crisis of the social has brought about a perfect slogan of such a process of transindividuation: ‘No one will be left alone in the crisis.” (…) Towards a Transindividual Self does a brilliant job of not only arguing for the importance and relevance for the transindividual as a concept for politics, performance, and the politics of performance, but of demonstrating a bold standard for political and aesthetic inquiry."
— Professor Jason Read (University of Maine), author of The Politics of Transindividuality (Brill, 2015)

Co-published by Oslo National Academy of the Arts, Sarma and Multimedijalni institut.

Logique Du Genre
Maya Gonzalez, Jeanne Neton
Éditions Sans Soleil - 10.00€ -

Qu’est-ce que le genre dans le capitalisme contemporain ? C’est à cette question qu’invite à répondre ce recueil, à partir d’une démarche théorique inspirée du féminisme et du marxisme. Il s’agit de penser, depuis une analyse systématique du rôle joué par le travail domestique et les violences de genre dans notre système économique, un monde au-delà de l’exploitation, et donc du genre et des ses contraintes. Un communisme au présent, qui s’empare de tous ces questionnements, trop souvent ignorés dans l’histoire du mouvement ouvrier. 

Jeanne Neton et Maya Gonzalez participent à la revue anglo-américaine Endnotes, dont le présent volume constitue la première traduction française. Elles se placent dans la lignée du féminisme autonome italien (on songe à Silvia Federici, Leopoldina Fortunati ou Mariarosa Dalla Costa) pour proposer une contribution originale et stimulante. 

Le Corps Lesbien
Monique Wittig
Les Éditions de Minuit - 9.00€ -  out of stock

"Pour Le Corps lesbien j’étais face à la nécessité d’écrire un livre entièrement lesbien dans sa thématique, son vocabulaire et sa texture, un livre lesbien du début à la fin, de la première à la quatrième de couverture. Je me trouvais par conséquent devant une double béance : celle de la page blanche que doivent affronter tous les écrivains lorsqu’ils commencent un livre, et une autre de nature différente : il n’existait aucun livre de ce genre. Jamais je n’ai relevé un défi aussi radical. Pouvais-je tenter cela ? En étais-je seulement capable ? Et quel serait alors ce livre ? J’ai gardé le manuscrit six mois dans un tiroir avant de le donner à mon éditeur."—Monique Wittig

Radical Futurisms – Ecologies of Collapse / Chronopolitics / Justice to Come
T.J. Demos
Sternberg Press - 19.00€ -  out of stock

What comes after end-of-world narratives: visions of just futurity and multispecies flourishing.

There is widespread consensus that we are living at the end—of democracy, of liberalism, of capitalism, of a healthy planet, of the Holocene, of civilization as we know it. In this book, drawing on radical futurisms and visions of justice-to-come emerging from the traditions of the oppressed—Indigenous, African-American, multispecies, anti-capitalist—as materialized in experimental visual cultural, new media, aesthetic practices, and social movements, T. J. Demos poses speculative questions about what comes after end-of-world narratives. He argues that it's as vital to defeat fatalistic nihilism as it is to defeat the false solutions of green capitalism and algorithmic governance.

How might we decolonize the future, and cultivate an emancipated chronopolitics in relation to an undetermined not-yet? If we are to avoid climate emergency's cooptation by technofixes, and the defuturing of multitudes by xenophobic eco-fascism, Demos argues, we must cultivate visions of just futurity and multispecies flourishing.

The Black Atlantic
Paul Gilroy
Verso Books - 18.00€ -  out of stock

In this groundbreaking work, Paul Gilroy proposes that the modern black experience can not be defined solely as African, American, Carribean or British alone, but can only be understand as a Black Atlantic culture that transcends ethnicity or nationality. This culture is thorough modern and, often, overlooked but can deeply enriches our understanding of what it means to be modern.

This condition comes out of historical transoceanic experience, established first with the slave trade but later seen in the development of a transatlantic culture. And Gilroy takes us on a tour of the music that, for centuries, has transmitted racial messages and feeling around the world, from the Jubilee Singers in the nineteenth century to Jimi Hendrix to rap. He also explores this internationalism as it is manifested in black writing from the ‘double consciousness’ of W. E. B. Du Bois to the ‘double vision’ of Richard Wright to the compelling voice of Toni Morrison. As a consequence, Black Atlantic charts the formation of a nationalism, if not a nation, within this shared, disasporic culture.

Bad Education: Why Queer Theory Teaches Us Nothing
Lee Edelman
Duke University Press - 40.00€ -  out of stock

Long awaited after No Future, and making queer theory controversial again, Lee Edelman’s Bad Education proposes a queerness without positive identity—a queerness understood as a figural name for the void, itself unnamable, around which the social order takes shape.

Like Blackness, woman, incest, and sex, queerness, as Edelman explains it, designates the antagonism, the structuring negativity, preventing that order from achieving coherence. But when certain types of persons get read as literalizing queerness, the negation of their negativity can seem to resolve the social antagonism and totalize community.

By translating the nothing of queerness into the something of “the queer,” the order of meaning defends against the senselessness that undoes it, thus mirroring, Edelman argues, education’s response to queerness: its sublimation of irony into the meaningfulness of a world. Putting queerness in relation to Lacan’s “ab-sens” and in dialogue with feminist and Afropessimist thought, Edelman reads works by Shakespeare, Jacobs, Almodóvar, Lemmons, and Haneke, among others, to show why queer theory’s engagement with queerness necessarily results in a bad education that is destined to teach us nothing.

Let Them Rot: Antigone's Parallax
Alenka Zupančič
Fordham University Press - 20.00€ -  out of stock

A provocative, highly accessible journey to the heart of Sophocles' Antigone elucidating why it keeps resurfacing as a central text of Western thought and Western culture.

"Zupančič writes with rare lucidity and patience for exposition, helped along by a talent for turning peculiar phrases or seemingly senseless jokes into full-blown insights. Her ideas are fresh, as if they hailed from some open air beyond the clutter of current theoretical quarrels. This brilliant account of Antigone breaks new ground for philosophy, psychoanalysis, and political and feminist theory."—Joan Copjec, Brown University

There is probably no classical text that has inspired more interpretation, critical attention, and creative response than Sophocles' A ntigone. What is it about the figure of Antigone that keeps haunting us? To what kind of always contemporary contradiction does the need, the urge to reread and reimagine Antigone—in all kinds of contexts and languages—correspond?  

The violence in Antigone is the opposite of "graphic" as we have come to know it in movies and in the media; rather, it is sharp and piercing, it goes straight to the bone. It is the violence of language, the violence of principles, the violence of desire, the violence of subjectivity. From this question of violence, the author turns to questions of funerary rites and of the relation of Antigone's singularizing claims to her universal appeal. What, Zupančič asks, does this particular (Oedipal) family's misfortune, of which Antigone chooses to be the guardian, share with the general condition of humanity? This forces us to confront the seemingly self-evident question: "What is incest?"  

Let Them Rot is Alenka Zupančič's absorbing guided tour of the philosophical and psychoanalytic issues arising from the Theban trilogy. Her original and surprising account illuminates the play's ongoing relevance and invites a wide readership to become captivated by its themes.  

Alenka Zupančič is Professor of Philosophy and Psychoanalysis at the European Graduate School and a researcher at the Institute of Philosophy at the Slovene Academy of Sciences and Arts. Her books include What IS Sex?, The Odd One In: On Comedy, and Ethics of the Real.

Letters on the Autonomy Project
Janet Sarbanes
Dead Letter Office - 22.00€ -  out of stock

In the face of rising authoritarianism and on the heels of urgent struggle, autonomy calls to us. How might we excavate the theory and history of autonomous politics to arrive at new possibilities for radical democracy and the radical imaginary? How can we rethink the ways in which artistic autonomy is theorized and practiced beyond the shrunken horizon of liberal individualism? How might we understand political and artistic autonomies as linked, rather than diametrically opposed? And what role does radical pedagogy have to play in all of this?

Framed by the thought of Cornelius Castoriadis, and engaging with Marxist, Black Radical, and Feminist approaches to liberation, as well as movements such as Occupy, Black Lives Matter, Me Too, Letters on the Autonomy Projectunderstands autonomy to be the capacity of a society, a community or an individual to modify its form. As Castoriadis argues, the struggle for self-determination requires unlimited questioning of the way things are, but also that we do or make something new in light of this interrogation. Autonomy is thus equally a project for thought, for education, for politics, and for art.

Stylistically, these open letters, addressed inclusively to artists, activists, and academics, are modeled on the philosophical letters of Friedrich Schiller on the one hand and the revolutionary communiqués of the Zapatistas on the other. Performing a kind of writing-as-praxis, they seek to grasp the potential of our moment with reference to historical and contemporary instances of political autonomy, notions of artistic autonomy, and art practices that connect the two. They also look at the possibilities of educating for autonomy, which cannot itself be taught. If we are indeed living in a time of creative struggle to remake the whole of society, then an understanding of the autonomy project – and how theory, pedagogy, activism, and art might contribute to it – is of burning relevance.

Janet Sarbanes is the author of the short story collections Army of One and The Protester Has Been Released. 

In Pursuit of Revolutionary Love: Precarity, Power, Communities
Joy James
Divided Publishing - 17.00€ -

Violence is arrayed against us because we’re Black, or female, or queer, or undocumented. There is no rescue team coming for us. With that knowledge, we need a different operational base to recreate the world. It is not going to be a celebrity savior. Never was, never will be. If you’re in a religious tradition that is millennia-old, consider how the last savior went out. It was always going to be bloody. It was always going to be traumatic. But there’s a beauty to facing the reality of our lives. Not our lives as they’re broken apart, written about, and then sold back to us in academic or celebrity discourse. But our lives as we understand them. The most important thing is showing up. Showing up and learning how to live by and with others, learning how to reinvent ourselves in this increasing wasteland. That’s the good life.

Foreword by Da’Shaun L. Harrison.
Afterword by Mumia Abu-Jamal.

"Joy James’s Revolutionary Love is umph-degree love; or love beyond measure. It is anything love. It is love without reckoning. It is love that dares all things, beyond which others may find the spirit-force to survive; to live to fight another day. Such love is also fighting itself, for the sake of ensuring that others may live." — Mumia Abu-Jamal

Autotheory as Feminist Practice in Art, Writing, and Criticism
Lauren Fournier
The MIT Press - 42.50€ -  out of stock

Autotheory—the commingling of theory and philosophy with autobiography—as a mode of critical artistic practice indebted to feminist writing and activism.

In the 2010s, the term “autotheory” began to trend in literary spheres, where it was used to describe books in which memoir and autobiography fused with theory and philosophy. In this book, Lauren Fournier extends the meaning of the term, applying it to other disciplines and practices. Fournier provides a long-awaited account of autotheory, situating it as a mode of contemporary, post-1960s artistic practice that is indebted to feminist writing, art, and activism. Investigating a series of works by writers and artists including Chris Kraus and Adrian Piper, she considers the politics, aesthetics, and ethics of autotheory.

Fournier argues that the autotheoretical turn signals the tenuousness of illusory separations between art and life, theory and practice, work and the self—divisions long blurred by feminist artists and scholars. Autotheory challenges dominant approaches to philosophizing and theorizing while enabling new ways for artists and writers to reflect on their lives. She argues that Kraus's 1997 I Love Dick marked the emergence of a newly performative, post-memoir “I”; recasts Piper's 1971 performance work Food for the Spirit as autotheory; considers autotheory as critique; examines practices of citation in autotheoretical work, including Maggie Nelson's The Argonauts; and looks at the aesthetics and ethics of disclosure and exposure, exploring the nuanced feminist politics around autotheoretical practices and such movements as #MeToo. Fournier formulates autotheory as a reflexive movement, connecting thinking, making art, living, and theorizing.

Disidentifications: Queers of Color and the Performance of Politics
José Esteban Muñoz
University of Minnesota Press - 24.00€ -

An important perspective on the ways outsiders negotiate mainstream culture.

There is more to identity than identifying with one’s culture or standing solidly against it. José Esteban Muñoz looks at how those outside the racial and sexual mainstream negotiate majority culture—not by aligning themselves with or against exclusionary works but rather by transforming these works for their own cultural purposes. Muñoz calls this process “disidentification,” and through a study of its workings, he develops a new perspective on minority performance, survival, and activism.

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