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Christina McPhee: A Commonplace Book

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ISBN: 9781947447080 9781947447097 Year: Pages: 166 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0186.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Arts in general
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:32
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Christina McPhee’s ‘commonplace book’ draws from a palimpsest of handwritten notes, lists, quotations, bibliographic fragments, and sketches, from an artist whose voracious reading practice is a direct feed into her life and art — all set to a visual and textual design-as-score, as prominent writers on painting, media arts, performance, video installation and poetics engage with her ‘open-work’ practice. Christina McPhee’s images move from within a matrix of abstraction, shadowing figures and contingent effects. The tactics of living are in subterfuge, like the dazzle ships of camouflage in war. This ‘commonplace book’ develops a view of recent work in collaged paintings, drawings, photomontage and video installation, around themes of environmental transformation and ‘post-natural’ community.

After the "Speculative Turn": Realism, Philosophy, and Feminism

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ISBN: 9780998237534 Year: Pages: 200 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0152.1.00 Language: French|English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Gender Studies
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:35
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Recent forms of realism in continental philosophy that are habitually subsumed under the category of “speculative realism,” a denomination referring to rather heterogeneous strands of philosophy, bringing together object-oriented ontology (OOO), non-standard philosophy (or non-philosophy), the speculative realist ideas of Quentin Meillassoux and Marxism, have provided grounds for the much needed critique of culturalism in gender theory, and the authority with which post-structuralism has dominated feminist theory for decades. This publication aims to bring forth some of the feminist debates prompted by the so-called “speculative turn,” while demonstrating that there has never been a niche of “speculative realist feminism.” Whereas most of the contributions featured in this collection provide a theoretical approach invoking the necessity of foregrounding new forms of realism for a “feminism beyond gender as culture,” some of the essays tackle OOO only to invite a feminist critical challenge to its paradigm, while others refer to some extent to non-philosophy or the new materialisms but are not reducible to either of the two. We have invited essays from intellectual milieus outside the Anglo-Saxon academic center, bringing together authors from Serbia, Slovenia, France, Ireland, the UK, and Canada, aiming to promote feminist internationalism (rather than a “generous act of cultural inclusion”).

Make and Let Die: Untimely Sovereignties

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ISBN: 9780988234048 Year: Pages: 258 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0136.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:36
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his collection of essays by one of medieval studies’ most brilliant historians argues that the analysis and critique of biopower, as conventionally defined by Michel Foucault and then widely assumed in much contemporary theory of sovereignty, is a sovereign mode of temporalization caught up in the very time-machine it ostensibly seeks to expose and dismantle. For Michel Foucault, biopower (epitomized in his maxim “to make live and to let die”) is the defining sign of the modern, and he famously argued that the task of political philosophy was to cut off the head of the classical (premodern) sovereign, the one “who made die and let live.” Entrapped by his supersessionary thinking on the question, Foucault argued that the maxim of “to make live and let die” of modern sovereignty superseded a premodern sovereignty characterized by the contrasting power “to make die and let live.” The essays collected in Biddick’s book (some reprinted and some published here for the first time) argue that Foucault spoke too soon about the supposed “then” of the classical sovereign and the modern “now,” and this became painfully apparent in his analysis of Nazism in his later lectures, Society Must be Defended. There Foucault groped to articulate an anguishing paradox: How could it be that the Nazis, as the ultimate biopolitical sovereign machine, would insist on an archaic (premodern) mode of sovereignty in their death camps? Here is how he posed the question in that lecture: “How can the power of death, the function of death, be exercised in a political system centered upon biopower?” Foucault left this question hanging.

On Style: An Atelier

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ISBN: 9780615934020 Year: Pages: 154 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0055.0.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Languages and Literatures
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:42
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Scholarship in medieval studies of the past 20 or so years has offered some provocative experiments in, and elegant exempla of, style. Scholars such as Anne Clark Bartlett, Kathleen Biddick, Catherine Brown, Brantley Bryant, Michael Camille, Jeffrey Jerome Cohen, Carolyn Dinshaw, James Earl, L.O. Aranye Fradenburg, Roberta Frank, Amy Hollywood, Cary Howie, C. Stephen Jaeger, Eileen Joy, Anna Klosowska, Nicola Masciandaro, Peggy McCracken, Paul Strohm, David Wallace, and Paul Zumthor, among others, have blended the conventions of academic writing with those of fiction, drama, memoir, comedy, polemic, and lyricism, and/or have developed what some would describe as elegant, and arresting (and in some cases, deliciously difficult) prose styles. As these registers merge, they can produce what has been called a queer historiographical encounter (or in queer theorist Elizabeth Freeman’s terms, “an erotohistoriography”), a “poetics of intensification,” and even a “new aestheticism.” The work of these scholars has also opened up debates (some rancorous) that often install what the editors of this volume feel are false binaries between form and content, feeling and thinking, affect and rigor, poetry and history, attachment and critical distance, enjoyment and discipline, style and substance. As Anna Klosowska writes in her contribution to this volume, The question of style, as it applies to medieval studies, is precisely the overcoming of that dichotomy between Nature and Man: a third element. And when the critique proceeds through the denunciation of the inimitability of someone’s style, as if it were the third sex, ungenerative, queer, sterile, sodomitic, lesbian, etc., the critic unconsciously puts his finger on exactly what style is; but that critic is mistaken about the style’s supposedly non-generative powers. In fact, style, neither fact nor theory but facilitating the transition between the two, is … the generative principle itself.

Dark Chaucer: An Assortment

Authors: --- ---
ISBN: 9780615701073 Year: Pages: 224 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0018.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Languages and Literatures
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:45
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Although widely beloved for its playfulness and comic sensibility, Chaucer’s poetry is also subtly shot through with dark moments that open into obscure and irresolvably haunting vistas, passages into which one might fall head-first and never reach the abyssal bottom, scenes and events where everything could possibly go horribly wrong or where everything that matters seems, if even momentarily, altogether and irretrievably lost. And then sometimes, things really do go wrong. Opting to dilate rather than cordon off this darkness, this volume assembles a variety of attempts to follow such moments into their folds of blackness and horror, to chart their endless sorrows and recursive gloom, and to take depth soundings in the darker recesses of the Chaucerian lakes in order to bring back palm- or bite-sized pieces (black jewels) of bitter Chaucer that could be shared with others . . . an “assortment,” if you will. Not that this collection finds only emptiness and non-meaning in these caves and lakes. You never know what you will discover in the dark.

Burn after Reading: Vol. 1, Miniature Manifestos for a Post/medieval Studies + Vol. 2, The Future We Want: A Collaboration

Authors: --- ---
ISBN: 9780692204412 Year: Pages: 226 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0067.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Linguistics
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:41
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The essays, manifestos, rants, screeds, pleas, soliloquies, telegrams, broadsides, eulogies, songs, harangues, confessions, laments, and acts of poetic terrorism in these two volumes — which collectively form an academic “rave” — were culled, with some later additions, from roundtable sessions at the International Congress on Medieval Studies in 2012 and 2013, organized by postmedieval: a journal for medieval cultural studies and the BABEL Working Group (“Burn After Reading: Miniature Manifestos for a Post/medieval Studies,” “Fuck This: On Letting Go,” and “Fuck Me: On Never Letting Go”) and George Washington University’s Medieval and Early Modern Studies Institute (“The Future We Want: A Collaboration”), respectively. Gathering together a rowdy multiplicity of voices from within medieval and early modern studies, these two volumes seek to extend and intensify a conversation about how to shape premodern studies, and also the humanities, in the years ahead. Authors in both volumes, in various ways, lay claim to the act(s) of manifesting, and also anti-manifesting, as a collective endeavor that works on behalf of the future without laying any belligerent claims upon it, where we might craft new spaces for the University-at-large, which is also a University that wanders, that is never just somewhere, dwelling in the partitive — of a particular place — but rather, seeks to be everywhere, always on the move, pandemic, uncontainable, and always to-come, while also being present/between us (manifest). This is not a book, but a blueprint. It is also an ephemeral gathering in the present tense.

Still Thriving: On the Importance of Aranye Fradenburg

Authors: --- --- --- --- et al.
ISBN: 9780988234031 Year: Pages: 88 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0099.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Languages and Literatures
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:39
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he work of L.O. Aranye Fradenburg, especially her psychoanalytic criticism of Chaucer, and her formulations of discontinuist historical approaches to the Middle Ages, has been extremely influential within medieval studies for the past 20 or so years. More recently she has been focusing on more broad defenses of the humanities, especially with regard to the valuable role of literary studies relative to the arts of everyday living, eudaimonia [flourishing], ethical community, and well-being, and also on psychoanalysis itself as a “liberal art.” Relationality, intersubjectivity, aliveness, resilience, care of the self and also of others, adaptive flexibility, playfulness, shared attention, companionship, healing, and thriving seem, increasingly, to be the key watchwords and concerns of Fradenburg’s work, and at the same time, the so-called “literary” mode is still central to these concerns, such that, as Fradenburg has written, “Interpretation and relationality depend on one another because all relationships are unending processes of interpretation and expression, listening and signifying. In turn, sentience assists relationality: we can’t thrive and probably can’t survive without minds open to possibility, capable of sensing and interpreting the tiniest shifts in, e.g., pitch and tone.” This small volume features short essays and personal reflections on the importance of Fradenburg’s career, as teacher and scholar, and also on the valuable role(s) that her work, and medieval studies more generally, has played and might still play in the defense of the humanities as essential to living and thriving.

Staying Alive: A Survival Manual for the Liberal Arts

Authors: --- --- --- --- et al.
ISBN: 9780615906508 Year: Pages: 372 DOI: 10.21983/P3.0052.1.00 Language: English
Publisher: punctum books
Subject: Education
Added to DOAB on : 2019-06-12 09:24:42
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Staying Alive: A Survival Manual for the Liberal Arts fiercely defends the liberal arts in and from an age of neoliberal capital and techno-corporatization run amok, arguing that the public university’s purpose is not vocational training, but rather the cultivation of what Fradenburg calls “artfulness,” including the art of making knowledge. In addition to sustained critical and creative thinking, the humanities develop the mind’s capacities for real-time improvisational communication and interpretation, without which we can neither thrive nor survive. Humanist pedagogy and research use play, experimentation and intersubjective exchange to foster forms of artfulness critical to the future of our species. From perception to reality-testing to concept-formation and logic, the arts and humanities teach us to see, hear and respond more keenly, and to imagine, or “model,” new futures and possibilities. Innovation of all kinds, technological or artistic, depends on the enhancement of the skills proper to staying alive

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