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Marcel Danesi

Pop culture emerged in the first decades of the twentieth century as a reaction to the restrictive social traditions of colonial America. It spread quickly and broadly throughout the bustling urban centers of the 1920s—an era when it formed a partnership with technology and the business world. This coalition gave pop culture its identity, allowing it to thrive and form alliances with artistic and literary movements. But pop culture may have run its course with the rise of meme culture. This publication revisits the social, psychic, and aesthetic roots of pop culture, suggesting that meme culture has fragmented its historical flow, thus threatening to bring about its demise.

Engaging with Fashion

Perspectives on Communication, Education and Business

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Edited by Federica Carlotto and Natalie McCreesh

This book is a modern exploration of how we engage with fashion today. Through a series of articles this book shows the ‘ways’ through which we can approach fashion. The articles are organized around the following six sections: marketing, consuming, educating, communicating, embodying and positioning - each with a mix of research approaches and strategies. From sustainability and consumerism to street-style and street-food. From how fashion is taught across the globe to how fashion is communicated through photography and the media. We invite the readers to be curators themselves, and to create their own ‘augmented knowledge’ of fashion, by reading the varied themes in this book. Contributors are Claire Allen, Deidra Arrington, Naomi Braithwaite, Jill Carey, Federica Carlotto, Karen Dennis, Doris Domoszlai, Linsday E. Feeny, Nádia Fernandes, Jacque Lynn Foltyn, Alessia Grassi, Chris Jones, Lan Lan, Peng Liu, Mario Matos Ribeiro, Natalie C. McCreesh, Alex McIntosh, Alice Morin, Nolly Moyssi, Maria Patsalosavvi, Laura Petican, Jennifer Richards, Susanne Schulz, Ines Simoes, Helen Storey, Steve Swindells, Stephen Wigley, Gaye Wilson and Cecilia Winterhalter.

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Edited by Pepita Hesselberth, Janna Houwen, Esther Peeren and Ruby de Vos

Legibility in the Age of Signs and Machines offers a compelling reflection on what the notion of legibility entails in a machinic world in which any form of cultural expression – from literary texts, films, artworks and museum exhibits to archives, laws, computer programs and algorithms – necessarily partakes in ever-more complex processes of (mass) mediation. Divided over four clusters focusing on desire, justice, machine and heritage, the chapters in the volume explore what makes something legible or illegible to whom or, indeed, what; the kinds of reading, processing or navigating such il/legibility facilitates or forecloses; and the role critical (media) theory, literary studies and the Humanities in general can play in tackling these and related issues.

Contributors: Ernst van Alphen, Anke Bosma, Siebe Bluijs, Sean Cubitt, Colin Davis, Katrine Dirckinck-Holmfeld, David Gauthier, Giovanna Fossati, Isabel Capeloa Gil, Pepita Hesselberth, Yasco Horsman, Janna Houwen, Looi van Kessel, Esther Peeren, Seth Rogoff, Roxana Sarion, Frederik Tygstrup, Inge van de Ven, Ruby de Vos, Peter Verstraten, Tessa de Zeeuw

Speculation as a Mode of Production

Forms of Value Subjectivity in Art and Capital

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Marina Vishmidt

In Speculation as a Mode of Production: Forms of Value Subjectivity in Art and Capital, Marina Vishmidt offers a new perspective on one of the main categories of capitalist life in the historical present. Writing not under the shadow but in the spirit of Adorno’s negative dialectic, her work pursues speculation through its contested terrains of philosophy, finance, and art, to arrive at the most detailed analysis that we now possess of the role of speculation in the shaping of subjectivity by value relations. Featuring detailed critical discussions of recent tendencies in the artistic representation of labour, and a brilliant reconstruction of the philosophical concept of the speculative from its origins in German Romanticism, Speculation as a Mode of Production is an essential, widescreen theorisation of capital’s drive to self-expansion, and an urgent corrective to the narrow and one-sided periodisations to which it is most commonly subjected.

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John Waldmeir

For the writers and artists in In-Between Identities: Signs of Islam in Contemporary American Writing, contemporary Muslim American identity is neither singular nor fixed. Rather than dismiss the tradition in favor of more secular approaches, however, all of the figures here discover in Muhammad’s revelation resources for affirming such uncertainty. For them, the Qur’anic notion of a divine “sign” validates creation, even that creativity born of contrasting if not competing assumptions about identity. To develop this claim, individual chapters in the book discuss Muslim faith in the work of poets Naomi Shihab Nye, Kazim Ali, Tyson Amir and Amir Sulaiman; novelists Mohja Kahf, Rabih Alameddine, and Willow Wilson; illustrator Sandow Birk; playwright Ayad Akhtar; and the online record of the 30 Mosques in 30 Days project.

Disassembling the Celebrity Figure

Credibility and the Incredible

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Edited by Jackie Raphael, Celia Lam and Millicent Weber

Disassembling the Celebrity Figure: Credibility and the Incredible questions the credibility of celebrity brands, exploring how fandoms depend on perceptions and representations of authenticity. It asks how authenticity is projected by global celebrities, and how fans consume these carefully curated personas, and explores how the media breaks down barriers between celebrities and fans. It presents a discussion of celebrities as brands, exploring how their images are maintained after they pass away. It also offers analysis of the ways in which historical figures are later reconstructed as celebrities, and explores how their images are circulated and consumed across contemporary media. Ultimately, the book examines authenticity in celebrity culture by looking at fandom, media representation, branding and celebrity deaths.

Contributors are Marie Josephine Bennett, Lise Dilling-Nielsen, Kylo-Patrick R. Hart, Mingyi Hou, Renata Iwicka, Ephraim Das Janssen, Magdalen Wing-Chi Ki, Celia Lam, Mirella Longo, Aliah Mansor, Jackie Raphael and Millicent Weber.

Representing Wars from 1860 to the Present

Fields of Action, Fields of Vision

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Edited by Claire Bowen and Catherine Hoffmann

Representing Wars from 1860 to the Present examines representations of war in literature, film, photography, memorials, and the popular press. The volume breaks new ground in cutting across disciplinary boundaries and offering case studies on a wide variety of fields of vision and action, and types of conflict: from civil wars in the USA, Spain, Russia and the Congo to recent western interventions in Afghanistan and Iraq. In the case of World War Two, Representing Wars emphasises idiosyncratic and non-western perspectives – specifically those of Japanese writers Hayashi and Ooka.
A central concern of the thirteen contributors has been to investigate the ethical and ideological implications of specific representational choices.

Contributors are: Claire Bowen, Catherine Ann Collins, Marie-France Courriol, Éliane Elmaleh, Teresa Gibert, William Gleeson, Catherine Hoffmann, Sandrine Lascaux, Christopher Lloyd, Monica Michlin, Guillaume Muller, Misako Nemoto, Clément Sigalas.

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Edited by Annie Ring, Henriette Steiner and Kristin Veel

Architecture and Control makes a collective critical intervention into the relationship between architecture, including virtual architectures, and practices of control since the turn of the twentieth to twenty-first centuries. Authors from the fields of architectural theory, literature, film and cultural studies come together here with visual artists to explore the contested sites at which, in the present day, attempts at gaining control give rise to architectures of control as well as the potential for architectures of resistance. Together, these contributions make clear how a variety of post-2000 architectures enable control to be established, all the while observing how certain architectures and infrastructures allow for alternative, progressive modes of control, and even modes of the unforeseen and the uncontrolled, to arise.

Contributors are: Pablo Bustinduy, Rafael Dernbach, Alexander R. Galloway, Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht, Maria Finn, Runa Johannessen, Natalie Koerner, Michael Krause, Samantha Martin-McAuliffe, Lorna Muir, Mikkel Bolt Rasmussen, Anne Elisabeth Sejten and Joey Whitfield

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Edited by Sanaz Fotouhi and Esmail Zeiny

Seen and Unseen teases out and explores how visual mediums construct visual cultures that often create limited perspectives of certain issues and groups. This volume focuses in particular on the representation of Islam and Muslims. It deals with fixed and stereotypical visual representations and explores alternative and challenging visual representations that reconstruct and dismantle existing belief systems. It approaches the topic from a vantage point of diverse multiple perspectives. Covering issues from Brunei, Iran, Egypt, and England and cyberspace, the essays in this volume examine the visual cultures of how Islam and Muslims are understood, misunderstood, misrepresented, or even embraced visually. Scholars in this volume draw on historical paintings, books and their covers, photography, and news to demonstrate the diversity and sometimes contradictory visual cultures that construct and adhere meaning to how Islam and Muslim people are seen.

Contributors: Hoda Afshar, Jared Ahmed, Syed Farid Alatas, Sanaz Fotouhi, Christiane Gruber, Layla Hendow, Raihana M.M., Bruno Starrs and Esmaeil Zeiny.

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Edited by Jeffrey A. Halley and Daglind E. Sonolet

In Bourdieu in Question: New Directions in French Sociology of Art, Jeffrey A. Halley and Daglind E. Sonolet offer to English-speaking audiences an account of the very lively Francophone debates over Pierre Bourdieu’s work in the domain of the arts and culture, and present other directions and perspectives taken by major French researchers who extend or differ from his point of view, and who were marginalized by the Bourdieusian moment.

Three generations of research are presented: contemporaries of Bourdieu, the next generation, and recent research. Themes include the art market and value, cultural politics, the reception of artworks, theory and the concept of the artwork, autonomy in art, ethnography and culture, and the critique of Bourdieu on literature.

Contributors are: Howard S. Becker, Martine Burgos, Marie Buscatto, Jean-Louis Fabiani, Laurent Fleury, Florent Gaudez, Jeffrey A. Halley, Nathalie Heinich, Yvon Lamy, Jacques Leenhardt, Cécile Léonardi, Clara Lévy, Pierre-Michel Menger, Raymonde Moulin, Jean-Claude Passeron, Emmanuel Pedler, Bruno Péquignot, Alain Quemin, Cherry Schrecker, Daglind E. Sonolet.