Samuel van Hoogstraten is familiar to scholars of Dutch art as a talented pupil and early critic of Rembrandt, and as the author of a major Dutch painting treatise. In this book, Celeste Brusati looks at the art, writing, and career of this multi-faceted artist.
Analyzing van Hoogstraten's painting treatise, illusionistic pictures, ingenious perspective boxes, and witty trompe-l'oeil images, Brusati reveals the crucial role these endeavors played in the forging of van Hoogstraten's professional and social identity. Brusati looks at the historical circumstances of van Hoogstraten's career, which he fashioned from a convergence of Dutch cultural practices, family genealogy, and his considerable entrepreneurial acumen. She shows how Van Hoogstraten exploited the court patronage system to secure the worth of his work in the newer market culture of the Dutch Republic.
Brusati explores Van Hoogstraten's use of illusionistic artifice in his art and writing to shed new light on the much-disputed nature of Dutch "realism", and she discusses how a notion of "experimental artistry", which linked representational craft to the production of knowledge, informed Van Hoogstraten's many projects and framed the terms within which he and his colleagues understood artistic achievement during this period.
"Wendy Doniger O'Flaherty . . . weaves a brilliant analysis of the complex role of dreams and dreaming in Indian religion, philosophy, literature, and art. . . . In her creative hands, enchanting Indian myths and stories illuminate and are illuminated by authors as different as Aeschylus, Plato, Freud, Jung, Kurl Gödel, Thomas Kuhn, Borges, Picasso, Sir Ernst Gombrich, and many others. This richly suggestive book challenges many of our fundamental assumptions about ourselves and our world."—Mark C. Taylor, New York Times Book Review
"Dazzling analysis. . . . The book is firm and convincing once you appreciate its central point, which is that in traditional Hindu thought the dream isn't an accident or byway of experience, but rather the locus of epistemology. In its willful confusion of categories, its teasing readiness to blur the line between the imagined and the real, the dream actually embodies the whole problem of knowledge. . . . [O'Flaherty] wants to make your mental flesh creep, and she succeeds."—Mark Caldwell, Village Voice
For the past fifty years, science and technology—supported with billions of dollars from the U.S. government—have advanced at a rate that would once have seemed miraculous, while society's problems have grown more intractable, complex, and diverse. Yet scientists and politicians alike continue to prescribe more science and more technology to cure such afflictions as global climate change, natural resource depletion, overpopulation, inadequate health care, weapons proliferation, and economic inequality.
Daniel Sarewitz scrutinizes the fundamental myths that have guided the formulation of science policy for half a century—myths that serve the professional and political interests of the scientific community, but often fail to advance the interests of society as a whole. His analysis ultimately demonstrates that stronger linkages between progress in science and progress in society will require research agendas that emerge not from the intellectual momentum of science, but from the needs and goals of society.
The Future of an Illusion was first published in 1989. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
The Future of an Illusion documents the pivotal role Constance Penley has played in the development of feminist film theory. Penley analyzes the primary movements that have shaped the field: the conjunction of feminism, film theory, and psychoanalysis, and the inherent debates surrounding the politics of women and representation. These debates center on the position of women in the classical Hollywood narrative, the construction of the spectator's desire in pornography and eroticism, and the implicitly male bias in psychoanalytically oriented film theory. Essential to anyone studying the sexual policies of representation, The Future of an Illusion ranges from avant-garde films to video, popular cinema, television, literature, and critical and cultural theory.
Constance Penley is associate professor of English and film studies at the University of Rochester. A co-editor of the journal Camera Obscura,she is the editor of Feminism and Film Theory.
In recent years, the rise of fundamentalism and a related turn to religion in the humanities have led to a powerful resurgence of interest in the problem of political theology. In a critique of this contemporary fascination with the theological underpinnings of modern politics, Victoria Kahn proposes a return to secularism—whose origins she locates in the art, literature, and political theory of the early modern period—and argues in defense of literature and art as a force for secular liberal culture.
Kahn draws on theorists such as Carl Schmitt, Leo Strauss, Walter Benjamin, and Hannah Arendt and their readings of Shakespeare, Hobbes, Machiavelli, and Spinoza to illustrate that the dialogue between these modern and early modern figures can help us rethink the contemporary problem of political theology. Twentieth-century critics, she shows, saw the early modern period as a break from the older form of political theology that entailed the theological legitimization of the state. Rather, the period signaled a new emphasis on a secular notion of human agency and a new preoccupation with the ways art and fiction intersected the terrain of religion.
The concept of cultural identity has become for many a convenient explanation for most of the world's political problems. In The Illusion of Cultural Identity Jean-François Bayart offers a sustained critique of this rationalization by dispelling the notion that fixed cultural identities do, in fact, exist.
In this highly sophisticated book, Bayart shows that the very idea of cultural identity prevents us from grasping the cultural dimensions of political action and economic development. Identities, he argues, are fluid, never homogeneous, and sometimes invented. Political repertoires are instead created through imagined, highly ambiguous aspects of culture—what he calls "imaginaires." For instance, the long beards worn by men in some fundamentalist groups are thought to be key to their core identities and thus assumed to be in conflict with modern values. These beards, however, do not stand in the way of the men's use of technology or their embrace of capitalism—an example Bayart uses to demonstrate the equivocality of cultural identity. The theoretical implications of Bayart's analysis emerge from a fascinating collection of historical examples that often surprise and always instruct.
How do "no-fault," "gender-neutral" divorce reforms actually harm the lives of women and children they are designed to protect? Focusing on the language and symbols of reform, Martha Fineman argues that by advocating measures based on equality of treatment rather than of outcome, liberal feminists disregarded the socioeconomic factors that simultaneously place women at a disadvantage in the market and favor their taking on primary domestic responsibilities. She traces in persuasive detail the detrimental effects of equality rhetoric in shaping divorce law — such as the legal separation of parents' and children's interests; equality replacing need as the prime criterion for settlements; and the increase of state intervention into family life. More than a critique, this book is an incisive argument for adopting outcome-oriented measures and a valuable overview of the pitfalls of uncritically implementing any rhetoric as social policy.
Harcourt argues that the way we think about markets has distorted the way we think about criminal justice, to the detriment of both spheres. He calls to task the conceptualization of market exchange as “free” and “natural,” an idea he traces back to the 18th-century French Physiocrats, and finds reinforced in modern neoliberal theory. This “illusion” continues to contribute to the expansion of American penality, as those who bypass the natural order of the market system are subject to policing and punishment by a government whose primary purpose is to protect the unfettered operation of capitalism.
The Illusion of History
Andrew R. Russ Catholic University of America Press, 2012 Library of Congress JA84.E9R69 2012 | Dewey Decimal 320.09224
Andrew Russ argues in this book that a closer look at their philosophical underpinnings finds that Rousseau, Marx, and Foucault are much less "historical" in their methodology than is widely believed. Instead, they share a more "timeless" view, one indebted to principles ordinarily seen as timeless or transcendent
Free and attentive news media are essential to the workings of a democratic nation. But how well does the news, in reality, actually serve the needs of citizens, and thereby democracy? How well do the major methods of sharing national political information work, and how well-informed do they leave voters? For years, News: The Politics of Illusion has been the leading textbook to address that question, and in this ninth edition W. Lance Bennett brings his analysis fully up to date, exploring recent developments in news media and showing how they have improved--or hampered--the wide sharing of political news and information.
For over thirty years, News: The Politics of Illusion has not simply reflected the political communication field—it has played a major role in shaping it. Today, the familiar news organizations of the legacy press are operating in a fragmenting and expanding mediaverse that resembles a big bang of proliferating online competitors that are challenging the very definition of news itself. Audience-powered sites such as the Huffington Post and Vox blend conventional political reporting with opinion blogs, celebrity gossip, and other ephemera aimed at getting clicks and shares. At the same time, the rise of serious investigative organizations such as ProPublica presents yet a different challenge to legacy journalism. Lance Bennett’s thoroughly revised tenth edition offers the most up-to-date guide to understanding how and why the media and news landscapes are being transformed. It explains the mix of old and new, and points to possible outcomes. Where areas of change are clearly established, key concepts from earlier editions have been revised. There are new case studies, updates on old favorites, and insightful analyses of how the new media system and novel kinds of information and engagement are affecting our politics. As always, News presents fresh evidence and arguments that invite new ways of thinking about the political information system and its place in democracy.
François Furet was acknowledged as the twentieth century's preeminent historian of the French Revolution. But years before his death, he turned his attention to the consequences and aftermath of another critical revolution—the Communist revolution. The result, Le passé d'une illusion, is a penetrating history of the ideological passions that have fueled and characterized the modern era.
"This may well be the most illuminating study ever devoted to the question of appeal exerted not only by Communism but also by the Nazi and other fascist varieties of totalitarianism in this century."—Hilton Kramer, New Criterion
"A subtle, nuanced but gripping study of the most pervasive and destructive illusion in the 20th century." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"The Passing of an Illusion . . . is both a profound work of intellectual history that takes its place alongside other great studies of the leftist heresy . . . and a relentless diagnosis of the self-subversive risks that are inherent in democratic regimes. "—Roger Kaplan, Washington Times
" A remarkable book. . . . Stimulating and challenging. . . . A man widely read in several languages, Furet clearly knew his way around 20th-century Europe, even unto the dark alleys that figure on no existing map. "—Mark Falcoff, Commentary
"A history of ideas, this work is not for the faint of heart, yet those who challenge it will discover a signal contribution to the literature of Communism."—Booklist
"Imperious and stunningly confident, grand in conception and expansive in manner, packed with fascinating detail and often incisive judgements."—John Dunn, Times Higher Education Supplement
"The Passing of an Illusion is brilliant, and one would be hard pressed to find better writing of history than the first chapter, which traces the roots of modern political thinking back to the nineteenth century."—J. Arch Getty, Atlantic Monthly
"A brilliant and important book. . . . The publication of the American edition makes accessible to the general reader the most thought-provoking historical assessment of communism in Europe to appear since its collapse."—Jeffrey Herf, Wall Street Journal
François Furet (1927-1997), educator and author, was a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor and was elected, in 1997, to become one of the "Forty Immortals" of the Académie Française, the highest intellectual honor in France. His many books include Interpreting the French Revolution, Marx and the French Revolution, and Revolutionary France. Deborah Furet, his widow, collaborated with him on many projects.
Applying research findings from studies in visual perception, neurophysiology, cognitive psychology, developmental psychology, and anthropology, Joseph D. Anderson defines the complex interaction of motion pictures with the human mind and organizes the relationship between film and cognitive science. Anderson’s primary argument is that motion picture viewers mentally process the projected images and sounds of a movie according to the same perceptual rules used in response to visual and aural stimuli in the world outside the theater. To process everyday events in the world, the human mind is equipped with capacities developed through millions of years of evolution. In this context, Anderson builds a metatheory influenced by the writings of J. J. and Eleanor Gibson and employs it to explore motion picture comprehension as a subset of general human comprehension and perception, focusing his ecological approach to film on the analysis of cinema’s true substance: illusion.
Anderson investigates how viewers, with their mental capacities designed for survival, respond to particular aspects of filmic structure—continuity, diegesis, character development, and narrative—and examines the ways in which rules of visual and aural processing are recognized and exploited by filmmakers. He uses Orson Welles’s Citizen Kane to disassemble and redefine the contemporary concept of character identification; he addresses continuity in a shot-by-shot analysis of images from Casablanca; and he uses a wide range of research studies, such as Harry F. Harlow’s work with infant rhesus monkeys, to describe how motion pictures become a substitute or surrogate reality for an audience. By examining the human capacity for play and the inherent potential for illusion, Anderson considers the reasons viewers find movies so enthralling, so emotionally powerful, and so remarkably real.
In this groundbreaking study, Joyce Hoffmann examines a critical twenty-five-year period in the work of one of the most influential journalists of the twentieth century. Theodore H. White was already a celebrated reporter when Jacqueline Kennedy summoned him for an exclusive interview in the aftermath of her husband's assassination. With her help, White would preserve what the First Lady claimed had been John F. Kennedy's vision of the New Frontier as an incarnation of that wistful, romantic kingdom--Camelot. Over the years, friends and advisers to Kennedy declared that they had never heard the president speak of Camelot. But White's article, which ran in Life magazine, created a myth that still endures in the popular consciousness.
That story was just one of many by Theodore White that had a lasting impact on the nation. As a correspondent for several of the country's most popular magazines, he covered the crucial events of the 1940s, '50s, and '60s. His best-selling book The Making of the President 1960 changed political reporting forever.
A gifted and likable man with a remarkable skill for ingratiating himself with others, White earned the confidence of key political, military, and diplomatic leaders. First in the Far East, later in Europe, and finally in Washington, D.C., he became a confidant and adviser rather than an adversary to the figures he covered for the news, following a pattern set by elite journalists. Even as he played the impartial reporter, White kept secrets in order to maintain access to his important sources, and he occasionally allowed his subjects, including John F. Kennedy and Nelson Rockefeller, to make changes in his work before publication.
Clinging to the illusion of objectivity, White--like other leading journalists in the postwar years--wrote about the world not as it was but as he believed it ought to be. Hoffmann relates the little-known episode in White's career when he intentionally obscured the truth about Chiang Kai-shek's corrupt and inept Nationalist government because he believed that undermining China's cause would be "a disservice to democracy."
No other book so thoroughly documents how a first-rank journalist can become a political insider and distort the news without losing the gloss of impartiality that is supposed to accompany the profession. Impressively researched, skillfully written, Theodore H. White and Journalism as Illusion is an unflinching look at a key figure in the history of American journalism and at the profession itself.
The Vital Lie is the first book to examine the reality-illusion conflict in modern drama from Ibsen to present-day playwrights. The book questions why vital lies, lies necessary for life itself, are such an obsessive concern for playwrights of the last hundred years. Using the work of fifteen playwrights, Abbott seeks to discover if modern playwrights treat illusions as helpful or necessary to life, or as signals of sicknesses from which human beings need to be cured. What happens to characters when they are forced to face the truth about themselves and their worlds without the protection of their illusions? The author develops a three-part historical analysis of the use of the reality-illusion theme, from its origins as a metaphysical search to its current elaborations as a theatrical game.
With the development of a strong parliamentary system, Orlow shows how close Prussia came to realizing its goal of lasting democracy for the entire Reich, and how far it fell when the Nazis took power.