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Peripheral Visions in the Globalizing Present

Space, Mobility, Aesthetics

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Edited by Esther Peeren, Hanneke Stuit and Astrid Van Weyenberg

This volume sheds new light on how today’s peripheries are made, lived, imagined and mobilized in a context of rapidly advancing globalization. Focusing on peripheral spaces, mobilities and aesthetics, it presents critical readings of, among others, Indian caste quarters, the Sahara, the South African backyard and European migration, as well as films, novels and artworks about marginalized communities and repressed histories. Together, these readings insist that the peripheral not only needs more visibility in political, economic and cultural terms, but is also invaluable for creating alternative perspectives on the globalizing present. Peripheral Visions combines sociological, cultural, literary and philosophical perspectives on the periphery, and highlights peripheral innovation and futurity to counter the lingering association of the peripheral with stagnation and backwardness.

Money and Totality

A Macro-Monetary Interpretation of Marx's Logic in Capital and the End of the 'Transformation Problem'

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Fred Moseley

This ambitious book presents a comprehensive new 'macro-monetary' interpretation of Marx’s logical method in Capital, based on substantial textual evidence, which emphasises two main points: (1) Marx’s theory is primarily a macroeconomic theory of the total surplus-value produced in the economy as a whole; and (2) Marx’s theory is a monetary theory from beginning to end and the circuit of money capital – M - C - M’ – is the logical framework of Marx’s theory. It follows from this 'macro-monetary' interpretation that, contrary to the prevailing view, there is no 'transformation problem' in Marx’s theory; i.e., Marx did not 'fail to transform the inputs of constant capital and variable capital' in his theory of prices of production in Part 2 of Volume III.

Deliverance from Slavery

Attempting a Biblical Theology in the Service of Liberation

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Dick Boer

‘Delivery from slavery’: these words, taken from a Dutch labour movement song, perfectly map onto the Bible’s central concern. They are also similar to the Torah’s key phrase: ‘I am YHWH, your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the house of bondage' (Ex 20:2).

The words are invoked here to serve as an axiom to be introduced into the modern period. The watchword ‘delivery from slavery’ translates the biblical message of the exodus from slavery into the theory and practice of a modern liberation movement. The present work argues that biblical theology is the attempt to ‘update’ the ‘language of the message’. It searches for a language that attends to the concerns of today’s world while ‘preserving’ the concerns that originally motivated biblical language.

The Rhythm of Thought in Gramsci

A Diachronic Interpretation of Prison Notebooks

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Giuseppe Cospito

Many scholars have recently shown great interest in a diachronic re-examination of Antonio Gramsci’s main theoretical-political categories in the Prison Notebooks. This method would uncover the origins and development of Gramsci’s concepts using the same method that Gramsci himself believed would allow us to grasp ‘the rhythm of thought’ in Marx. The present work embraces this perspective and puts it to work in two ways. Its first part analyzes the relation between structure and superstructure and the concepts of hegemony and the regulated society. Its second part extends the diachronic analysis to the conceptual pairings which represent alternatives to structure-superstructure, encompassing questions of political and cultural organisation as well as the relation between Gramsci and the major proponents of historical materialism (Marx, Engels, Lenin).

English translation of Il ritmo del pensiero: per una lettura diacronica dei «Quaderni del carcere» di Gramsci published by Bibliopolis, Naples (2011).

God, Guns, Gold and Glory

American Character and its Discontents

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Lauren Langman and George Lundskow

America, beginning as a small group of devout Puritan settlers, ultimately became the richest, most powerful Empire in the history of the world, but having reached that point, is now in a process of implosion and decay. This book, inspired by Frankfurt School Critical Theory, especially Erich Fromm, offers a unique historical, cultural and characterological analysis of American national character and its underlying psychodynamics. Specifically, this analysis looks at the persistence of Puritan religion, as well as the extolling of male toughness and America's unbridled pursuit of wealth. Finally, its self image of divinely blessed exceptionalism has fostered vast costs in lives and wealth. But these qualities of its national character are now fostering both a decline of its power and a transformation of its underlying social character. This suggests that the result will be a changing social character that enables a more democratic, tolerant and inclusive society, one that will enable socialism, genuine, participatory democracy and a humanist framework of meaning. This book is relevant to understanding America’s past, present and future.

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Jason Read

The Politics of Transindividuality re-examines social relations and subjectivity through the concept of transindividuality. Transindividuality is understood as the mutual constitution of individuality and collectivity, and as such it intersects with politics and economics, philosophical speculation and political practice. While the term transindividuality is drawn from the work of Gilbert Simondon, this book views it broadly, examining such canonical figures as Spinoza, Hegel, and Marx, as well as contemporary debates involving Etienne Balibar, Bernard Stiegler, and Paolo Virno. Through these intersecting aspects and interpretations of transindividuality the book proposes to examine anew the intersection of politics and economics through their mutual constitution of affects, imagination, and subjectivity.

Art and Value

Art’s Economic Exceptionalism in Classical, Neoclassical and Marxist Economics

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Dave Beech

Art and Value is the first comprehensive analysis of art's political economy throughout classical, neoclassical and Marxist economics. It provides a critical-historical survey of the theories of art's economic exceptionalism, of art as a merit good, and of the theories of art's commodification, the culture industry and real subsumption.
Key debates on the economics of art, from the high prices artworks fetch at auction, to the controversies over public subsidy of the arts, the 'cost disease' of artistic production, and neoliberal and post-Marxist theories of art's incorporation into capitalism, are examined in detail.
Subjecting mainstream and Marxist theories of art's economics to an exacting critique, the book concludes with a new Marxist theory of art's economic exceptionalism.

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Martin Wein

In History of the Jews in the Bohemian Lands, Martin Wein traces the interaction of Czechs and Jews, but also of Christian German-speakers, Slovaks, and other groups in the Bohemian lands and in Czechoslovakia throughout the first half of the twentieth century. This period saw accelerated nation-building and nation-cleansing in the context of hegemony exercised by a changing cast of great powers, namely Austria-Hungary, France, Nazi Germany, and the Soviet Union. The author examines Christian-Jewish and inner-Jewish relations in various periods and provinces, including in Subcarpathian Ruthenia, emphasizing interreligious alliances of Jews with Protestants, such as T. G. Masaryk, and political parties, for example a number of Social Democratic ones. The writings of Prague’s Czech-German-Jewish founders of theories of nationalism, Hans Kohn, Karl W. Deutsch, and Ernest Gellner, help to interpret this history.

Althusser and Theology

Religion, Politics and Philosophy

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Edited by Agon Hamza

Religion has always been an object of philosophical analysis, as well as a platform for political practice. One cannot imagine a form of philosophical thinking without its relation to a religion, whether it negates or affirms the latter. In different philosophical orientations, religion also serves as a condition for philosophy.

Althusser and Theology intends not so much to fill a gap in Althusser scholarship as to make an important contribution to the contemporary radical left movement. In this regard, Althusser and Theology is of significant importance in the current debates on the Left concerning its relation to theology. It will also contribute to the ongoing debate on Althusser, as well as opening up a new perspective on his philosophical project.

Contributors are: Roland Boer, Stanislas Breton, Isa Blumi, Geoff Pfeifer, Agon Hamza, Warren Montag, Vittorio Morfino, Knox Peden, Panagiotis Sotiris, Ted Stolze, Jana Tsoneva, and Gabriel Tupinambá.

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Edited by Maria Margaroni and Effie Yiannopoulou

This collection of essays investigates the convergence between the postmodern politics of mobility and a politics of metaphor, a politics, in other words, in the context of which the production and displacement of meaning(s) constitute the major stakes. Ranging from discussions of re-territorialization, multiculturalism, “digisporas” and transnational politics and ethics, to September 11th, the Pentagon’s New Map, American legislation on Chinese immigration, Gianni Amelio’s film Lamerica, Keith Piper’s online installations and Doris Salcedo’s Atrabiliarios, the collection aims to follow three different theoretical trajectories. First, it seeks to rethink our concepts of mobility in order to open them up to the complexity that structures the thoughts and practices of a global order. Second, it critically examines the privileged position of concepts and metaphors of mobility within postmodern theory. In juxtaposing conflictual theoretical formulations, the book sets out to present the competing responses that fuel academic debates around this issue. Finally, it evaluates the influence of our increasingly mobile conceptual frameworks and everyday experience on the redefinition of politics that is currently under way, especially in the context of Post-Marxist theory. Its hope is to contribute to the production of alternative political positions and practices that will address the conflicting desires for attachment and movement marking postmodernity.