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Notions of Europe and the European among Participants in EU Cultural Initiatives
In this book, Tuuli Lähdesmäki, Katja Mäkinen, Viktorija L. A. Čeginskas, and Sigrid Kaasik-Krogerus scrutinize how people who participate in cultural initiatives funded and governed by the European Union understand the idea of Europe. The book focuses on three cultural initiatives: the European Capital of Culture, the European Heritage Label, and a European Citizen Campus project funded through the Creative Europe programme. These initiatives are examined through field studies conducted in 12 countries between 2010 and 2018. The authors describe their approach as ‘ethnography of Europeanization’ and conceptualize the attempts at Europeanization in the European Union’s cultural policy as politics of belonging.
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Karl Marx circles us, and we him. This reflects the power of his legacy, but it also indicates the nature of the intellectual process. We move around objects of interest and insight, working by successive approximations. Peter Beilharz has been circling Marx for forty years. This volume of essays expands the metaphor by working through three circles in the history of Marxism. The first works with Marx; the second with the classical legacy, through to Bolshevism and western marxism ; the third steps closer to the present , in thinkers such as Bauman , Heller and Castoriadis. Read together, these essays represent a lifetime’s engagement with Marx and his intellectual consequences.
This book constitutes a sociological research on the current “narrations” of the economic and refugee crisis which has mobilized all the aspects of social storytelling during the last decade, most particularly in the European South. Because the different (mass and social) media reflect the dominant ideas and representations, the research on the meaning of different media narratives becomes a necessary report for the understanding of the relation (or “inexistent dialogue”?) between official political discourses and popular myths (based on everyday life values of prosperity, mostly promoted by the mass culture and the cultural industries’ products). Despite the ongoing inequalities and difficulties, the contemporary audiences seem to counterbalance misery by the dreams of happiness, provided by this kind of products.

Contributors include: Christiana Constantopoulou, Amalia Frangiskou, Evangelia Kalerante, Laurence Larochelle, Debora Marcucci, Valentina Marinescu, Albertina Pretto, Maria Thanopoulou, Joanna Tsiganou, Vasilis Vamvakas, and Eleni Zyga.
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The Joker both fascinates and repels us. From his origin in Detective Comics in 1940, he has committed obscene crimes, some of the worst the Batman universe has ever known, and, conversely, fans have made him the topic of erotic and pornographic “fan fiction.” Speculation about the Joker abounds, where some fans have even claimed that the Joker is “queer coded.” This work explores various popular claims about the Joker, and delves into the history of comic books, and of other popular media from a semiotic viewpoint to understand “The Clown Prince of Crime” in the contexts in which he existed to understand his evolution in the past. From his roots as a “typical hoodlum,” The Joker even starred in his own eponymous comic book series and he was recently featured in a non-canonical movie. This work examines what it is about the Joker which fascinates us.
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The “Greek Crisis” in Europe: Race, Class and Politics, critically analyses the publicity of the Greek debt crisis, by studying Greek, Danish and German mainstream media during the crisis’ early years (2009-2015). Mass media everywhere reproduced a sensualistic “Greek crisis” spectacle, while iterating neoliberal and occidentalist ideological myths. Overall, the Greek people were deemed guilty of a systemic crisis, supposedly enjoying lavish lifestyles on the EU’s expense. Using concrete examples, the study foregrounds neoorientalist, neoracist and classist stereotypes deployed in the construction and media coverage of the Greek crisis. These media practices are connected to the “soft politics” of the crisis, which produce public consensus over neoliberal reforms such as austerity and privatizations, and secure debt repayment from democratic interventions.
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In The Rest Write Back: Discourse and Decolonization, Esmaeil Zeiny brings together a collection of essays that interrogate the colonial legacies, the contemporary power structure and the geopolitics of knowledge production. The scholars in this collection illustrate how the writing-back paradigm engages in a conversation and paves the way for a “dialogical and pluri-versal” world where the Rest is no longer excluded. Among the important features of this book is that it presents ways for “decoloniality” and “epistemic disobedience.” This book will be of interest to scholars and students of all Social Science and Humanities disciplines but it is particularly important for those in the disciplines of sociology, postcolonial studies, cultural studies, literature, and theory and philosophy of Social Sciences and Humanities.

Contributors include: Dustin J. Byrd, Ciarunji Chesaina, Hiba Ghanem, Mladjo Ivanovic, Masumi Hashimoto Odari, Arjuna Parakrama, JM. Persánch, Andrew Ridgeway, Rudolf J. Siebert, and Esmaeil Zeiny.
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Again, Dangerous Visions: Essays in Cultural Materialism brings together twenty-six essays charting the development of Andrew Milner’s distinctively Orwellian version of cultural materialism between 1981 and 2015. The essays address three substantive areas: the sociology of literature, cultural materialism and the cultural politics of the New Left, and utopian and science fiction studies. They are bookended by two conversations between Milner and his editor J.R. Burgmann, the first looking back retrospectively on the development of Milner’s thought, the second looking forward prospectively towards the future of academia, the political left and science fiction.
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The Global Trajectories of Queerness interrogates the term “queer” by closely mapping what space the theorizing of same-sex sexualities and sexual politics in the non-West inhabits. From theoretical discussions around the epistemologies of such conceptualizations of space in the Global South, to specific ethnographies of same-sex culture, this collection hopes to forge a way of tracking the histories of race, class, caste, gender, and sexual orientation that form what is called the moment of globalization. The volume, co-edited by Ashley Tellis and Sruti Bala, asks whether the societies of the Global South simply borrow and graft an internationalist (read Euro-US) language of LGBT/queer rights and identity politics, whether it is imposed on them or whether there is a productive negotiation of that language.


Contributing Authors: Sruti Bala, Laia Ribera Cañénguez, Soledad Cutuli, Roderick Ferguson, Iman Ganji, Krystal Ghisyawan, Josephine Ho, Neville Hoad, Victoria Keller, Haneen Maikey, Shad Naved, Guillermo Núñez Noriega, Stella Nyanzi, Witchayanee Ocha, Julieta Paredes, Mikki Stelder, Ashley Tellis, and Wei Tingting