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From the silent era to the present day, popular music has been a key component of the film experience. Yet there has been little serious writing on film soundtracks that feature popular music. Soundtrack Available fills this gap, as its contributors provide detailed analyses of individual films as well as historical overviews of genres, styles of music, and approaches to film scoring. With a cross-cultural emphasis, the contributors focus on movies that use popular songs from a variety of genres, including country, bubble-gum pop, disco, classical, jazz, swing, French cabaret, and showtunes. The films discussed range from silents to musicals, from dramatic and avant-garde films to documentaries in India, France, England, Australia, and the United States. The essays examine both "nondiegetic" music in film--the score playing outside the story space, unheard by the characters, but no less a part of the scene from the perspective of the audience--and "diegetic" music--music incorporated into the shared reality of the story and the audience. They include analyses of music written and performed for films, as well as the now common practice of scoring a film with pre-existing songs. By exploring in detail how musical patterns and structures relate to filmic patterns of narration, character, editing, framing, and mise-en-scene, this volume demonstrates that pop music is a crucial element in the film experience. It also analyzes the life of the soundtrack apart from the film, tracing how popular music circulates and acquires new meanings when it becomes an official soundtrack. Contributors. Rick Altman, Priscilla Barlow, Barbara Ching, Kelley Conway, Corey Creekmur, Krin Gabbard, Jonathan Gill, Andrew Killick, Arthur Knight, Adam Knee, Jill Leeper, Neepa Majumdar, Allison McCracken, Murray Pomerance, Paul Ramaeker, Jeff Smith, Pamela Robertson Wojcik, Nabeel Zuberi
In Culture Wars in Brazil Daryle Williams analyzes the contentious politicking over the administration, meaning, and look of Brazilian culture that marked the first regime of president-dictator Getlio Vargas (1883-1954). Examining a series of interconnected battles waged among bureaucrats, artists, intellectuals, critics, and everyday citizens over the state's power to regulate and consecrate the field of cultural production, Williams argues that the high-stakes struggles over cultural management fought between the Revolution of 1930 and the fall of the Estado Novo dictatorship centered on the bragging rights to brasilidade--an intangible yet highly coveted sense of Brazilianness. Williams draws on a rich selection of textual, pictorial, and architectural sources in his exploration of the dynamic nature of educational film and radio, historical preservation, museum management, painting, public architecture, and national delegations organized for international expositions during the unsettled era in which modern Brazil's cultural canon took definitive form. In his close reading of the tensions surrounding official policies of cultural management, Williams both updates the research of the pioneer generation of North American Brazilianists, who examined the politics of state building during the Vargas era, and engages today's generation of Brazilianists, who locate the construction of national identity of modern Brazil in the Vargas era. By integrating Brazil into a growing body of literature on the cultural dimensions of nations and nationalism, Culture Wars in Brazil will be important reading for students and scholars of Latin American history, state formation, modernist art and architecture, and cultural studies.
When Germany annexed colonies in Africa and the Pacific beginning in the 1880s, many German women were enthusiastic. At the same time, however, they found themselves excluded from what they saw as a great nationalistic endeavor. In German Women for Empire, 1884-1945 Lora Wildenthal untangles the varied strands of racism, feminism, and nationalism that thread through German women's efforts to participate in this episode of overseas colonization. In confrontation and sometimes cooperation with men over their place in the colonial project, German women launched nationalist and colonialist campaigns for increased settlement and new state policies. Wildenthal analyzes recently accessible Colonial Office archives as well as mission society records, periodicals, women's memoirs, and fiction to show how these women created niches for themselves in the colonies. They emphasized their unique importance for white racial "purity" and the inculcation of German culture in the family. While pressing for career opportunities for themselves, these women also campaigned against interracial marriage and circulated an image of African and Pacific women as sexually promiscuous and inferior. As Wildenthal discusses, the German colonial imaginary persisted even after the German colonial empire was no longer a reality. The women's colonial movement continued into the Nazi era, combining with other movements to help turn the racialist thought of the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries into the hierarchical evaluation of German citizens as well as colonial subjects. Students and scholars of women's history, modern German history, colonial politics and culture, postcolonial theory, race/ethnicity, and gender will welcome this groundbreaking study.
In Fair Sex, Savage Dreams Jean Walton examines the work of early feminist psychoanalytic writing to decipher in it the unacknowledged yet foundational role of race. Focusing on the 1920s and 1930s, a time when white women were actively refashioning Freud's problematic accounts of sexual subjectivity, Walton rereads in particular the writing of British analysts Joan Riviere and Melanie Klein, modernist poet H. D. , the eccentric French analyst Marie Bonaparte, and anthropologist Margaret Mead. Charting the fantasies of racial difference in these women's writings, Walton establishes that race--particularly during this period--was inseparable from accounts of gender and sexuality. While arguing that these women remained notably oblivious to the racial meanings embedded in their own attempts to rearticulate feminine sexuality, Walton uses these very blindspots to understand how race and sex are deeply imbricated in the constitution of subjectivity. Challenging the notion that subjects acquire gender identities in isolation from racial ones, she thus demonstrates how white-centered psychoanalytic theories have formed the basis for more contemporary feminist and queer explorations of fantasy, desire, power, and subjectivity. Fair Sex, Savage Dreams will appeal to scholars of psychoanalysis, literary and cinematic modernism, race studies, queer theory, feminist theory, and anthropology.
As W. E. B. DuBois famously prophesied in The Souls of Black Folk, the fiction of the color line has been of urgent concern in defining a certain twentieth-century U. S. racial "order. " Yet the very arbitrariness of this line also gives rise to opportunities for racial "passing," a practice through which subjects appropriate the terms of racial discourse. To erode race's authority, Gayle Wald argues, we must understand how race defines and yet fails to represent identity. She thus uses cultural narratives of passing to illuminate both the contradictions of race and the deployment of such contradictions for a variety of needs, interests, and desires. Wald begins her reading of twentieth-century passing narratives by analyzing works by African American writers James Weldon Johnson, Jessie Fauset, and Nella Larsen, showing how they use the "passing plot" to explore the negotiation of identity, agency, and freedom within the context of their protagonists' restricted choices. She then examines the 1946 autobiography Really the Blues, which details the transformation of Milton Mesirow, middle-class son of Russian-Jewish immigrants, into Mezz Mezzrow, jazz musician and self-described "voluntary Negro. " Turning to the 1949 films Pinky and Lost Boundaries, which imagine African American citizenship within class-specific protocols of race and gender, she interrogates the complicated representation of racial passing in a visual medium. Her investigation of "post-passing" testimonials in postwar African American magazines, which strove to foster black consumerism while constructing "positive" images of black achievement and affluence in the postwar years, focuses on neglected texts within the archives of black popular culture. Finally, after a look at liberal contradictions of John Howard Griffin's 1961 auto-ethnography Black Like Me, Wald concludes with an epilogue that considers the idea of passing in the context of the recent discourse of "color blindness. " Wald's analysis of the moral, political, and theoretical dimensions of racial passing makes Crossing the Line important reading as we approach the twenty-first century. Her engaging and dynamic book will be of particular interest to scholars of American studies, African American studies, cultural studies, and literary criticism.
The forgotten history of the "all-girl" big bands of the World War II era takes center stage in Sherrie Tucker's Swing Shift. American demand for swing skyrocketed with the onslaught of war as millions--isolated from loved ones--sought diversion, comfort, and social contact through music and dance. Although all-female jazz and dance bands had existed since the 1920s, now hundreds of such groups, both African American and white, barnstormed ballrooms, theaters, dance halls, military installations, and makeshift USO stages on the home front and abroad. Filled with firsthand accounts of more than a hundred women who performed during this era and complemented by thorough--and eye-opening--archival research, Swing Shift not only offers a history of this significant aspect of American society and culture but also examines how and why whole bands of dedicated and talented women musicians were dropped from--or never inducted into--our national memory. Tucker's nuanced presentation reveals who these remarkable women were, where and when they began to play music, and how they navigated a sometimes wild and bumpy road--including their experiences with gas and rubber rationing, travel restrictions designed to prioritize transportation for military needs, and Jim Crow laws and other prejudices. She explains how the expanded opportunities brought by the war, along with sudden increased publicity, created the illusion that all female musicians--no matter how experienced or talented--were "Swing Shift Maisies," 1940s slang for the substitutes for the "real" workers (or musicians) who were away in combat. Comparing the working conditions and public representations of women musicians with figures such as Rosie the Riveter, WACs, USO hostesses, pin-ups, and movie stars, Tucker chronicles the careers of such bands as the International Sweethearts of Rhythm, Phil Spitalny's Hours of Charm, The Darlings of Rhythm, and the Sharon Rogers All-Girl Band.
In Shakespeare, Brecht, and the Intercultural Sign renowned Brecht scholar Antony Tatlow uses drama to investigate cultural crossings and to show how intercultural readings or performances question the settled assumptions we bring to interpretations of familiar texts. Through a "textual anthropology" Tatlow examines the interplay between interpretations of Shakespeare and readings of Brecht, whose work he rereads in the light of theories of the social subject from Nietzsche to Derrida and in relation to East Asian culture, as well as practices within Chinese and Japanese theater that shape their versions of Shakespearean drama. Reflecting on how, why, and to what effect knowledges and styles of performance pollinate across cultures, Tatlow demonstrates that the employment of one culture's material in the context of another defamiliarizes the conventions of representation in an act that facilitates access to what previously had been culturally repressed. By reading the intercultural, Tatlow shows, we are able not only to historicize the effects of those repressions that create a social unconscious but also gain access to what might otherwise have remained invisible. This remarkable study will interest students of cultural interaction and aesthetics, as well as readers interested in theater, Shakespeare, Brecht, China, and Japan.
Chinese Modern examines crucial episodes in the creation of Chinese modernity during the turbulent twentieth century. Analyzing a rich array of literary, visual, theatrical, and cinematic texts, Xiaobing Tang portrays the cultural transformation of China from the early 1900s through the founding of the People's Republic, the installation of the socialist realist aesthetic, the collapse of the idea of utopia in the aftermath of the Cultural Revolution, and the gradual cannibalization of the socialist past by consumer culture at the century's end. Throughout, he highlights the dynamic tension between everyday life and the heroic ideal. Tang uncovers crucial clues to modern Chinese literary and cultural practices through readings of Wu Jianren's 1906 novel The Sea of Regret and works by canonical writers Lu Xun, Ding Ling, and Ba Jin. For the midcentury, he broadens his investigation by considering theatrical, cinematic, and visual materials in addition to literary texts. His reading of the 1963 play The Young Generation reveals the anxiety and terror underlying the exhilarating new socialist life portrayed on the stage. This play, enormously influential when it first appeared, illustrates the utopian vision of China's lyrical age and its underlying discontents--both of which are critical for understanding late-twentieth-century China. Tang closes with an examination of post-Cultural Revolution nostalgia for the passion of the lyrical age. Throughout Chinese Modern Tang suggests a historical and imaginative affinity between apparently separate literatures and cultures. He thus illuminates not only Chinese modernity but also the condition of modernity as a whole, particularly in light of the postmodern recognition that the market and commodity culture are both angel and devil. This elegantly written volume will be invaluable to students of China, Asian studies, literary criticism, and cultural studies, as well as to readers who study modernity.
In The Color of Sex Mason Stokes offers new ways of thinking about whiteness by exploring its surprisingly ambivalent partnership with heterosexuality. Stokes examines a wide range of white-supremacist American texts written and produced between 1852 and 1915--literary romances, dime novels, religious and scientific tracts, film--and exposes whiteness as a tangled network of racial and sexual desire. Stokes locates these white-supremacist texts amid the anti-racist efforts of African American writers and activists, deepening our understanding of both American and African American literary and cultural history. The Color of Sex reveals what happens when race and sexuality meet, when white desire encounters its own ambivalence. As Stokes argues, whiteness and heterosexuality exist in anxious relation to one another. Mutually invested in "the normal," they support each other in their desperate insistence on the cultural logic of exclusion. At the same time, however, they threaten one another in their attempt to create and sustain a white future, since reproducing whiteness necessarily involves the risk of contamination Charting the curious movements of this "white heterosexuality," The Color of Sex inaugurates a new moment in our ongoing attempt to understand the frenzied interplay of race and sexuality in America. As such, it will appeal to scholars interested in race theory, sexuality studies, and American history, culture, and literature.
In Like Cattle and Horses Steve Smith connects the rise of Chinese nationalism to the growth of a Chinese working class. Moving from the late nineteenth century, when foreign companies first set up factories on Chinese soil, to 1927, when the labor movement created by the Chinese Communist Party was crushed by Chiang Kai-shek, Smith uses a host of documents--journalistic accounts of strikes, memoirs by former activists, police records--to argue that a nationalist movement fueled by the effects of foreign imperialism had a far greater hold on working-class identity than did class consciousness. While the massive wave of labor protest in the 1920s was principally an expression of militant nationalism rather than of class consciousness, Smith argues, elements of a precarious class identity were in turn forged by the very discourse of nationalism. By linking work-related demands to the defense of the nation, anti-imperialist nationalism legitimized participation in strikes and sensitized workers to the fact that they were worthy of better treatment as Chinese citizens. Smith shows how the workers' refusal to be treated "like cattle and horses" (a phrase frequently used by workers to describe their condition) came from a new but powerfully felt sense of dignity. In short, nationalism enabled workers to interpret the anger they felt at their unjust treatment in the workplace in political terms and to create a link between their position as workers and their position as members of an oppressed nation. By focusing on the role of the working class, Like Cattle and Horses is one of very few studies that examines nationalism "from below," acknowledging the powerful agency of nonelite forces in promoting national identity. Like Cattle and Horses will interest historians of labor, modern China, and nationalism, as well as those engaged in the study of revolutions and revolt.
America at the last fin de sicle was in a period of profound societal transition. Industrialization was well under way and with it a burgeoning sense of professionalism and a growing middle class that was becoming increasingly anxious about issues of race, gender, and class. The American 1890s: A Cultural Reader is a wide-ranging anthology of essays, criticism, and fiction first printed in periodicals during those last remarkable years of the nineteenth century, a decade commonly referred to as the "golden age" of periodical culture. To depict the many changes taking place in the United States at this time, Susan Harris Smith and Melanie Dawson have drawn from an eclectic range of periodicals: elite monthlies such as Scribner's, Harper's, and the Atlantic Monthly; political magazines such as the North American Review and Forum; magazines for general readers such as Cosmopolitan and McClures; and specialized publications including the Chatauquan, Outing, and Colored American Magazine. Authors represented in the collection include Andrew Carnegie, Edith Wharton, Theodore Roosevelt, Susan B. Anthony, Booker T. Washington, Stephen Crane, W. E. B. DuBois, Jacob Riis, and Frederick Jackson Turner. A general introduction to the period, a brief contextualizing essay for each selection, and a comprehensive bibliography of secondary sources are provided as well. In examining and debating the decade's momentous political and social developments, the essays, editorials, and stories in this anthology reflect a constantly shifting culture at a time of internal turmoil, unprecedented political expansion, and a renaissance of modern ideas and new technologies. Bringing together a carefully chosen selection of primary sources, The American 1890s presents a remarkable variety of views--nostalgic, protective, imperialist, progressive, egalitarian, and democratic--held by American citizens a century ago.
In A Not So Foreign Affair Andrea Slane investigates the influence of images of Nazism on debates about sexuality that are central to contemporary American political rhetoric. By analyzing an array of films, journalism, scholarly theories, melodrama, video, and propaganda literature, Slane describes a common rhetoric that emerged during the 1930s and 1940s as a means of distinguishing "democratic sexuality" from that ascribed to Nazi Germany. World War II marked a turning point in the cultural rhetoric of democracy, Slane claims, because it intensified a preoccupation with the political role of private life and pushed sexuality to the center of democratic discourse. Having created tremendous anxiety--and fascination--in American culture, Nazism became associated with promiscuity, sexual perversionand the destruction of the family. Slane reveals how this particular imprint of fascism is used in progressive as well as conservative imagery and language to further their domestic agendas and shows how our cultural engagement with Nazism reflects the inherent tension in democracy between the value of diversity, individual freedoms national identity, and notions of the common good. Finally, she applies her analysis of wartime narratives to contemporary texts, examining anti-abortion, anti-gay, and anti-federal rhetoric, as well as the psychic life of skinheads, censorship debates, and the contemporary fascination with incest. An invaluable resource for understanding the language we use--both visual and narrative--to describe and debate democracy in the United States today, A Not So Foreign Affair will appeal to those interested in cultural studies, film and video studies, American studies, twentieth century history, German studies, rhetoric, and sexuality studies.
There have been many studies on the forced relocation and internment of nearly 120,000 Japanese Americans during World War II. But An Absent Presence is the first to focus on how popular representations of this unparalleled episode in U. S. history affected the formation of Cold War culture. Caroline Chung Simpson shows how the portrayal of this economic and social disenfranchisement haunted--and even shaped--the expression of American race relations and national identity throughout the middle of the twentieth century. Simpson argues that when popular journals or social theorists engaged the topic of Japanese American history or identity in the Cold War era they did so in a manner that tended to efface or diminish the complexity of their political and historical experience. As a result, the shadowy figuration of Japanese American identity often took on the semblance of an "absent presence. " Individual chapters feature such topics as the case of the alleged Tokyo Rose, the Hiroshima Maidens Project, and Japanese war brides. Drawing on issues of race, gender, and nation, Simpson connects the internment episode to broader themes of postwar American culture, including the atomic bomb, McCarthyism, the crises of racial integration, and the anxiety over middle-class gender roles. By recapturing and reexamining these vital flashpoints in the projection of Japanese American identity, Simpson fills a critical and historical void in a number of fields including Asian American studies, American studies, and Cold War history.
While traditional welfare efforts have waned, a new style of social policy implementation has emerged dramatically in recent decades. The new style is reflected in a panoply of Community Economic Development (ced) initiatives--efforts led by locally-based organizations to develop housing, jobs, and business opportunities in low-income neighborhoods. In this book William H. Simon provides the first comprehensive examination of the evolution of Community Economic Development, complete with an analysis of its operating premises and strategies. He describes the profusion of new institutional forms that have arisen from the movement, amalgamations that cut across conventional distinctions--such as those between private and public--and that encompass the efforts of nonprofits, cooperatives, churches, business corporations, and public agencies. Combining local political mobilization with entrepreneurial initiative and electoral accountability with market competition, this phenomenon has catalyzed new forms of property rights designed to motivate investment and civic participation while curbing the dangers of speculation and middle-class flight. With its examination of many localities and its appraisal of the strengths and weaknesses of the prevailing approach to Community Economic Development, this book will be a valuable resource for local housing, job, and business development officials; community activists; and students of law, business, and social policy.
Virtually since its inception, the United States has nurtured a dreamlike and often delirious image of itself as an essentially classless society. Given the stark levels of social inequality that have actually existed and that continue today, what sustains this at once hopelessly ideological and breathlessly utopian mirage? In Around Quitting Time Robert Seguin investigates this question, focusing on a series of modern writers who were acutely sensitive to the American web of ideology and utopic vision in order to argue that a pervasive middle-class imaginary is the key to the enigma of class in America. Tracing connections between the reconstruction of the labor process and the aesthetic dilemmas of modernism, between the emergence of the modern state and the structure of narrative, Seguin analyzes the work of Nathanael West, Ernest Hemingway, Willa Cather, John Barth, and others. These fictional narratives serve to demonstrate for Seguin the pattern of social sites and cultural phenomenon that have emerged where work and leisure, production and consumption, and activity and passivity coincide. He reveals how, by creating pathways between these seemingly opposed domains, the middle-class imaginary at once captures and suspends the dynamics of social class and opens out onto a political and cultural terrain where class is both omnipresent and invisible. Aroung Quitting Time will interest critics and historians of modern U. S. culture, literary scholars, and those who explore the interaction between economic and cultural forms.
A Master on the Periphery of Capitalism is a translation (from the original Portuguese) of Roberto Schwarz's renowned study of the work of Brazilian novelist Machado de Assis (1839-1908). A leading Brazilian theorist and author of the highly influential notion of "misplaced ideas," Schwarz focuses his literary and cultural analysis on Machado's The Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas, which was published in 1880. Writing in the Marxist tradition, Schwarz investigates in particular how social structure gets internalized as literary form, arguing that Machado's style replicates and reveals the deeply embedded class divisions of nineteenth-century Brazil. Widely acknowledged as the most important novelist to have written in Latin America before 1940, Machado had a surprisingly modern style. Schwarz notes that the unprecedented wit, sarcasm, structural inventiveness, and mercurial changes of tone and subject matter found in The Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas marked a crucial moment in the history of Latin American literature. He argues that Machado's vanguard narrative reflects the Brazilian owner class and its peculiar status in both national and international contexts, and shows why this novel's success was no accident. The author was able to confront some of the most prestigious ideologies of the nineteenth century with some uncomfortable truths, not the least of which was that slavery remained the basis of the Brazilian economy. A Master on the Periphery of Capitalism will appeal to those with interests in Latin American literature, nineteenth century history, and Marxist literary theory.
Africanizing Anthropology: Fieldwork, Networks, and the Making of Cultural Knowledge in Central Africaby Lyn Schumaker
Africanizing Anthropology tells the story of the anthropological fieldwork centered at the Rhodes-Livingstone Institute in Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) during the mid-twentieth century. Focusing on collaborative processes rather than on the activity of individual researchers, Lyn Schumaker gives the assistants and informants of anthropologists a central role in the making of anthropological knowledge. Schumaker shows how local conditions and local ideas about culture and history, as well as previous experience of outsiders' interest, shape local people's responses to anthropological fieldwork and help them, in turn, to influence the construction of knowledge about their societies and lives. Bringing to the fore a wide range of actors--missionaries, administrators, settlers, the families of anthropologists--Schumaker emphasizes the daily practices of researchers, demonstrating how these are as centrally implicated in the making of anthropological knowlege as the discipline's methods. Selecting a prominent group of anthropologists--The Manchester School--she reveals how they achieved the advances in theory and method that made them famous in the 1950s and 1960s. This book makes important contributions to anthropology, African history, and the history of science.
Crowning a decade of innovative efforts in the historical study of law and legal phenomena in the region, Crime and Punishment in Latin America offers a collection of essays that deal with the multiple aspects of the relationship between ordinary people and the law. Building on a variety of methodological and theoretical trends--cultural history, subaltern studies, new political history, and others--the contributors share the conviction that law and legal phenomena are crucial elements in the formation and functioning of modern Latin American societies and, as such, need to be brought to the forefront of scholarly debates about the region's past and present. While disassociating law from a strictly legalist approach, the volume showcases a number of highly original studies on topics such as the role of law in processes of state formation and social and political conflict, the resonance between legal and cultural phenomena, and the contested nature of law-enforcing discourses and practices. Treating law as an ambiguous and malleable arena of struggle, the contributors to this volume--scholars from North and Latin America who represent the new wave in legal history that has emerged in recent years-- demonstrate that law not only produces and reformulates culture, but also shapes and is shaped by larger processes of political, social, economic, and cultural change. In addition, they offer valuable insights about the ways in which legal systems and cultures in Latin America compare to those in England, Western Europe, and the United States. This volume will appeal to scholars in Latin American studies and to those interested in the social, cultural, and comparative history of law and legal phenomena. Contributors. Carlos Aguirre, Dain Borges, Lila Caimari, Arlene J. Daz, Luis A. Gonzalez, Donna J. Guy, Douglas Hay, Gilbert M. Joseph, Juan Manuel Palacio, Diana Paton, Pablo Piccato, Cristina Rivera Garza, Kristin Ruggiero, Ricardo D. Salvatore, Charles F. Walker
Sharing a postrevolutionary sympathy with the struggles of the poor, the contributors to this first comprehensive collection of writing on subalternity in Latin America work to actively link politics, culture, and literature. Emerging from a decade of work and debates generated by a collective known as the Latin American Studies Group, the volume privileges the category of the subaltern over that of class, as contributors focus on the possibilities of investigating history from below. In addition to an overview by Ranajit Guha, essay topics include nineteenth-century hygiene in Latin American countries, Rigoberta Mench after the Nobel, commentaries on Haitian and Argentinian issues, the relationship between gender and race in Bolivia, and ungovernability and tragedy in Peru. Providing a radical critique of elite culture and of liberal, bourgeois, and modern epistemologies and projects, the essays included here prove that Latin American Subaltern Studies is much more than the mere translation of subaltern studies from South Asia to Latin America. Contributors. Marcelo Bergman, John Beverley, Robert Carr, Sara Castro-Klarn, Michael Clark, Beatriz Gonzlez Stephan, Ranajit Guha, Mara Milagros Lpez , Walter Mignolo, Alberto Moreiras, Abdul-Karim Mustapha, Jos Rabasa, Ileana Rodrguez, Josefina Saldaa-Portillo, Javier Sanjins, C. Patricia Seed, Doris Sommer, Marcia Stephenson, Mnica Szurmuk, Gareth Williams, Marc Zimmerman
In Reading the Figural, or, Philosophy after the New Media D. N. Rodowick applies the concept of "the figural" to a variety of philosophical and aesthetic issues. Inspired by the aesthetic philosophy of Jean-Franois Lyotard, the figural defines a semiotic regime where the distinction between linguistic and plastic representation breaks down. This opposition, which has been the philosophical foundation of aesthetics since the eighteenth century, has been explicitly challenged by the new electronic, televisual, and digital media. Rodowick--one of the foremost film theorists writing today--contemplates this challenge, describing and critiquing the new regime of signs and new ways of thinking that such media have inaugurated. To fully comprehend the emergence of the figural requires a genealogical critique of the aesthetic, Rodowick claims. Seeking allies in this effort to deconstruct the opposition of word and image and to create new concepts for comprehending the figural, he journeys through a range of philosophical writings: Thierry Kuntzel and Marie-Claire Ropars-Wuilleumier on film theory; Jacques Derrida on the deconstruction of the aesthetic; Siegfried Kracauer and Walter Benjamin on the historical image as a utopian force in photography and film; and Gilles Deleuze and Michel Foucault on the emergence of the figural as both a semiotic regime and a new stratagem of power coincident with the appearance of digital phenomena and of societies of control. Scholars of philosophy, film theory, cultural criticism, new media, and art history will be interested in the original and sophisticated insights found in this book.
Body of Writing focuses on the traces that an author's "body" leaves on a work of fiction. Drawing on the work of six important Spanish American writers of the twentieth century, Ren Prieto examines narratives that reflect--in differing yet ultimately complementary ways--the imprint of the author's body, thereby disclosing insights about power, aggression, transgression, and eroticism. Healthy, invalid, lustful, and confined bodies--as portrayed by Julio Cortzar, Guillermo Cabrera Infante, Gabriel Garca Mrquez, Severo Sarduy, Rosario Castellanos, and Tununa Mercado--become evidence for Roland Barthes's contention that works of fiction are "anagrams of the body. " Claiming that an author's intentions can be uncovered by analyzing "the topography of a text," Prieto pays particular attention not to the actions or plots of these writers' fiction but rather to their settings and characterizations. In the belief that bodily traces left on the page reveal the motivating force behind a writer's creative act, he explores such fictional themes as camouflage, deterioration, defilement, entrapment, and subordination. Along the way, Prieto reaches unexpected conclusions regarding topics that include the relationship of the female body to power, male and female transgressive impulses, and the connection between aggression, the idealization of women, and anal eroticism in men. This study of how authors' longings and fears become embodied in literature will interest students and scholars of literary and psychoanalytic criticism, gender studies, and twentieth-century and Latin American literature.
In City of Suspects Pablo Piccato explores the multiple dimensions of crime in early-twentieth-century Mexico City. Basing his research on previously untapped judicial sources, prisoners' letters, criminological studies, quantitative data, newspapers, and political archives, Piccato examines the paradoxes of repressive policies toward crime, the impact of social rebellion on patterns of common crime, and the role of urban communities in dealing with transgression on the margins of the judical system. By investigating postrevolutionary examples of corruption and organized crime, Piccato shines light on the historical foundations of a social problem that remains the main concern of Mexico City today. Emphasizing the social construction of crime and the way it was interpreted within the moral economy of the urban poor, he describes the capital city during the early twentieth century as a contested territory in which a growing population of urban poor had to negotiate the use of public spaces with more powerful citizens and the police. Probing official discourse on deviance, Piccato reveals how the nineteenth-century rise of positivist criminology--which asserted that criminals could be readily distinguished from the normal population based on psychological and physical traits--was used to lend scientific legitimacy to class stratifications and to criminalize working-class culture. Furthermore, he argues, the authorities' emphasis on punishment, isolation, and stigmatization effectively created cadres of professional criminals, reshaping crime into a more dangerous problem for all inhabitants of the capital. This unique investigation into crime in Mexico City will interest Latin Americanists, sociologists, and historians of twentieth-century Mexican history.
The Invention of Capitalism: Classical Political Economy and the Secret History of Primitive Accumulationby Michael Perelman
The originators of classical political economy--Adam Smith, David Ricardo, James Steuart, and others--created a discourse that explained the logic, the origin, and, in many respects, the essential rightness of capitalism. But, in the great texts of that discourse, these writers downplayed a crucial requirement for capitalism's creation: For it to succeed, peasants would have to abandon their self-sufficient lifestyle and go to work for wages in a factory. Why would they willingly do this? Clearly, they did not go willingly. As Michael Perelman shows, they were forced into the factories with the active support of the same economists who were making theoretical claims for capitalism as a self-correcting mechanism that thrived without needing government intervention. Directly contradicting the laissez-faire principles they claimed to espouse, these men advocated government policies that deprived the peasantry of the means for self-provision in order to coerce these small farmers into wage labor. To show how Adam Smith and the other classical economists appear to have deliberately obscured the nature of the control of labor and how policies attacking the economic independence of the rural peasantry were essentially conceived to foster primitive accumulation, Perelman examines diaries, letters, and the more practical writings of the classical economists. He argues that these private and practical writings reveal the real intentions and goals of classical political economy--to separate a rural peasantry from their access to land. This rereading of the history of classical political economy sheds important light on the rise of capitalism to its present state of world dominance. Historians of political economy and Marxist thought will find that this book broadens their understanding of how capitalism took hold in the industrial age.
Since the nineteenth century, ideas centered on the individual, on Emersonian self-reliance, and on the right of the individual to the pursuit of happiness have had a tremendous presence in the United States--and even more so after the Reagan era. But has this presence been for the good of all? In Negative Liberties Cyrus R. K. Patell revises important ideas in the debate about individualism and the political theory of liberalism. He does so by adding two new voices to the current discussion--Toni Morrison and Thomas Pynchon--to examine the different ways in which their writings embody, engage, and critique the official narrative generated by U. S. liberal ideology. Pynchon and Morrison reveal the official narrative of individualism as encompassing a complex structure of contradiction held in abeyance. This narrative imagines that the goals of the individual are not at odds with the goals of the family or society and in fact obscures the existence of an unholy truce between individual liberty and forms of oppression. By bringing these two fiction writers into a discourse dominated by Ralph Waldo Emerson, Isaiah Berlin, John Rawls, George Kateb, Robert Bellah, and Michael Sandel, Patell unmasks the ways in which contemporary U. S. culture has not fully shed the oppressive patterns of reasoning handed down by the slaveholding culture from which American individualism emerged. With its interdisciplinary approach, Negative Liberties will appeal to students and scholars of American literature, culture, sociology, and politics.
The Ontogeny of Information is a critical intervention into the ongoing and perpetually troubling nature-nurture debates surrounding human development. Originally published in 1985, this was a foundational text in what is now the substantial field of developmental systems theory. In this revised edition Susan Oyama argues compellingly that nature and nurture are not alternative influences on human development but, rather, developmental products and the developmental processes that produce them. Information, says Oyama, is thought to reside in molecules, cells, tissues, and the environment. When something wondrous occurs in the world, we tend to question whether the information guiding the transformation was pre-encoded in the organism or installed through experience or instruction. Oyama looks beyond this either-or question to focus on the history of such developments. She shows that what developmental "information" does depends on what is already in place and what alternatives are available. She terms this process "constructive interactionism," whereby each combination of genes and environmental influences simultaneously interacts to produce a unique result. Ontogeny, then, is the result of dynamic and complex interactions in multileveled developmental systems. The Ontogeny of Information challenges specialists in the fields of developmental biology, philosophy of biology, psychology, and sociology, and even nonspecialists, to reexamine the existing nature-nurture dichotomy as it relates to the history and formation of organisms.
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