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Anarchism and the Avant-Garde

Radical Arts and Politics in Perspective

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Edited by Carolin Kosuch

Anarchism and the Avant-Garde: Radical Arts and Politics in Perspective contributes to the continuing debate on the encounter of the classical anarchisms (1860s−1940s) and the artistic and literary avant-gardes of the same period, probing its dimensions and limits. Case studies on Dadaism, decadence, fauvism, neo-impressionism, symbolism, and various anarchisms explore the influence anarchism had on the avant-gardes and reflect on avant-garde tendencies within anarchism. This volume also explores the divergence of anarchism and the avant-gardes. It offers a rich examination of politics and arts, and it complements an ongoing discourse with theoretical tools to better assess the aesthetic, social, and political cross-pollination that took place between the avant-gardes and the anarchists in Europe.

Stoicism and Performance

A Joyful Materialism

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Cormac Power

Power’s Stoicism and Performance presents Stoicism as a means of navigating key debates and concepts in contemporary theatre and performance. Stoicism has influenced many of the most cited radical thinkers in the discipline of theatre and performance studies; for instance Deleuze, Foucault, Kristeva, Agamben. A central aim of this work is to bring Stoicism more explicitly into the fold of the discipline, and to use Stoicism to think differently about performance. With a series of chapters covering themes such as performativity, embodiment, emotion, affect and spectatorship, this book finds points of encounter between Stoicism and contemporary understandings and practices of performance. It presents these encounters as modes of transformative experience in relation to our being in the world.

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Edited by Richard Shusterman

Cities are defined by their complex network of busy streets and the multitudes of people that animate them through physical presence and bodily actions that often differ dramatically: elegant window-shoppers and homeless beggars, protesting crowds and patrolling police. As bodies shape city life, so the city’s spaces, structures, economies, politics, rhythms, and atmospheres reciprocally shape the urban soma. This collection of original essays explores the somaesthetic qualities and challenges of city life (in Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas) from a variety of perspectives ranging from philosophy, urban theory, political theory, and gender studies to visual art, criminology, and the interdisciplinary field of somaesthetics. Together these essays illustrate the aesthetic, cultural, and political roles and trials of bodies in the city streets.

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Joshua Richards

In T. S. Eliot’s Ascetic Ideal, Joshua Richards charts an intellectual history of T. S. Eliot’s interaction with asceticism. This history is drawn from Eliot’s own education in the topic with the texts he read integrated into detailed textual analysis. Eliot’s early encounters with the ascetic ideal began a lifetime of interplay and reflection upon self-denial, purgation, and self-surrender. In 1909, he began a study of mysticism, likely, in George Santayana’s seminar, and thereafter showed the influence of this education. Yet, his interaction with the ascetic ideal and his background in mysticism was not a simple thing; still, his early cynicism was slowly transformed to an embrace.

Conceptualism and Materiality

Matters of Art and Politics

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Edited by Christian Berger

Conceptualism and Materiality. Matters of Art and Politics underscores the significance of materials and materiality within Conceptual art and conceptualism more broadly. It challenges the notion of conceptualism as an idea-centered, anti-materialist enterprise, and highlights the political implications thereof.
The essays focus on the importance of material considerations for artists working during the 1960s and 1970s in different parts of the world. In reconsidering conceptualism’s neglected material aspects, the authors reveal the rich range of artistic inquiries into theoretical and political notions of matter and material. Their studies revise and diversify the account of this important chapter in the history of twentieth-century art — a reassessment that carries wider implications for the study of art and materiality in general.

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- Prof Dr Thomas Dreier

Law and images are generally not regarded as having much in common, since law is based on textual and images are based on visual information. The paper demonstrates that quite to the contrary, legal norms can be understood as models of intended moral behaviour and hence as images, in the same way as images can be said to have a normative and hence regulatory effect. Following an interdisciplinary approach along the lines of cultural research, the paper explains how images “function” to lawyers and how the law “works” to those trained in the visual sciences. In addition, laying the foundations for a research field “Law and Images” in parallel to the well-established “Law and Literature”, the paper describes the main avenues for future research in this field. Also, the paper contains a brief systematization of images in law, of law and for law.

Appendix

Translation of ‘Characterisation of Belinsky (Information and illumination)’ by M.P. Pogodin

David Foreman and Irene Zohrab

Irene Zohrab

M.P. Pogodin’s essay on ‘Characterisation of Belinsky’ was published in The Citizen (Grazhdanin) under F.M. Dostoevsky’s editorship in response to his first issue of A Writer’s Diary (Dnevnik pisatelia) launched on January 1, 1873. Dostoevsky represents Belinsky, his former mentor, as an impassioned atheist and socialist, who tried to convert him to his materialist belief. By implication Belinsky becomes the scapegoat for Dostoevsky’s earlier involvement with the socialist-orientated Petrashevsky Circle that resulted in his arrest and sentence for reading Belinsky’s banned letter to Gogol. Pogodin disputes Dostoevsky’s representation of Belinsky by demonstrating the critic’s commitment to Christian faith, whose ‘live’ voice affected his audience due to ‘particular circumstances’ (censorship) and whose changeability was natural. Dostoevsky’s partisan allusions to Belinsky (including verbal to Vs. Solov’ev), while not providing any context to Belinsky’s pronouncements, nor engagement with socio-philosophical ideas, such as individual anarchism (Max Stirner), undermine not only Belinsky, but subvert a wide range of Western philosophical humanist principles espoused at various times by him, from ‘love of humanity’ and ‘personal freedom’, to individualism.