Age of Entanglement
Kris Manjapra Harvard University Press, 2014 Library of Congress DS428.M36 2014 | Dewey Decimal 303.48243054
Age of Entanglement explores the patterns of connection linking German and Indian intellectuals from the nineteenth century to the years after the Second World War. Kris Manjapra traces the intersecting ideas and careers of philologists, physicists, poets, economists, and others who shared ideas, formed networks, and studied one another's worlds. Moving beyond well-rehearsed critiques of colonialism, this study recasts modern intellectual history in terms of the knotted intellectual itineraries of seeming strangers.
Collaborations in the sciences, arts, and humanities produced extraordinary meetings of German and Indian minds. Meghnad Saha met Albert Einstein, Stella Kramrisch brought the Bauhaus to Calcutta, and Girindrasekhar Bose began a correspondence with Sigmund Freud. Rabindranath Tagore traveled to Germany to recruit scholars for a new university, and Himanshu Rai worked with Franz Osten to establish movie studios in Bombay. These interactions, Manjapra argues, evinced shared responses to the hegemony of the British empire. Germans and Indians hoped to find in one another the tools needed to disrupt an Anglocentric world order. As Manjapra demonstrates, transnational encounters are not inherently progressive. From Orientalism to Aryanism to scientism, German-Indian entanglements were neither necessarily liberal nor conventionally cosmopolitan, often characterized as much by manipulation as by genuine cooperation.
A forthright look at the future of the discipline in the wake of immense social changes.
What becomes of "national knowledge" in our age of globalization? If dramatic changes in technology, commerce, and social relations are undermining familiar connections between culture and place, what happens to legacies of learning that put the nation at the center of the study of history, culture, language, politics, and geography? In short, what remains of American Studies? At a critical moment, this book offers a richly textured historical perspective on where our notions of national knowledge-and our sense of American Studies-have come from and where they may lead in a future of new ideas about culture and community.
The America that seems to be disappearing before our very eyes is, George Lipsitz argues, actually the cumulative creation of yesterday's struggles over identity, culture, and power. With examples from statistics and history, poster designs and music lyrics, Lipsitz shows how American Studies has been shaped by the social movements of the 1930s, 1960s, and 1980s. His analysis reveals the sedimented history of social movement contestation contained in contemporary popular music, visual art, and cinema.
Finally, Lipsitz identifies the ways in which the globalization of commerce and culture are producing radically new understandings of politics, performance, consumption, knowledge, and nostalgia; the changing realities present not so much a danger as a clear challenge to a still-evolving American Studies--a challenge that this book helps us to confront wisely, flexibly, and effectively.
George Lipsitz is professor of ethnic studies at the University of California, San Diego, where he serves as director of the Thurgood Marshall Institute. He is the author of many books, including Time Passages, The Possessive Investment in Whiteness: How White People Profit from Identity Politics (1998), and Dangerous Crossroads: Popular Music, Postmodernism, and the Poetics of Place (1997). He also edited Stan Weir's Singlejack Solidarity (2004).
In the modern West, we take for granted that what we call the “natural world” confronts us all and always has—but Before Nature explores that almost unimaginable time when there was no such conception of “nature”—no word, reference, or sense for it.
Before the concept of nature formed over the long history of European philosophy and science, our ancestors in ancient Assyria and Babylonia developed an inquiry into the world in a way that is kindred to our modern science. With Before Nature, Francesca Rochberg explores that Assyro-Babylonian knowledge tradition and shows how it relates to the entire history of science. From a modern, Western perspective, a world not conceived somehow within the framework of physical nature is difficult—if not impossible—to imagine. Yet, as Rochberg lays out, ancient investigations of regularity and irregularity, norms and anomalies clearly established an axis of knowledge between the knower and an intelligible, ordered world. Rochberg is the first scholar to make a case for how exactly we can understand cuneiform knowledge, observation, prediction, and explanation in relation to science—without recourse to later ideas of nature. Systematically examining the whole of Mesopotamian science with a distinctive historical and methodological approach, Before Nature will open up surprising new pathways for studying the history of science.
Is there a need to remodel constructivism to be more politically attuned? Author Piki Ish-Shalom calls for an activist academy that engages society and the polity to prevent the watering down of democracy, while helping to create a space for criticism. In this book, he suggests several concrete measures for this engagement within three spheres: individual theoretical work, the academic community as a whole, and within society and the polity. Beyond the Veil of Knowledge suggests that essentially contested concepts are a key medium that politicians use to try to minimize public resistance to their political goals. For constructivists, this means that the social construction of both social knowledge and the social world can be understood as the sociopolitical construction of knowledge and the sociopolitical world.
This timely book brings together activist scholars from a number of disciplines (political science, geography, sociology, anthropology, and communications) to provide new insights into a growing trend in publicly engaged research and scholarship. Bridging Scholarship and Activism creatively redefines what constitutes activism without limiting it to a narrow range of practices. Acknowledging that the current conjuncture of neoliberal globalization has created constraints on as well as possibilities for activist scholarly engagement, the book argues that racism and its intersections with gender and class oppression are salient forces to be interrogated and confronted in the predicaments and struggles activist scholarship targets. The book’s ultimate goal is to create a decolonized and democratized forum in which activist scholars from the Global South converse and cross-fertilize ideas and projects with their counterparts from the United States and other North Atlantic metropolitan-based academy. The coeditors and contributors attempt to decenter hegemonic knowledge and to create some of the necessary (if not sufficient) conditions for a more pluriversal (rather than orthodox “universal”) context for producing enabling knowledge, without the naiveté and romanticism that has characterized earlier projects in critical and radical social science.
Introduction, Ulrich Oslender and Bernd Reiter Part One. The Promises and Pitfalls of Collaborative Research
Of Academic Embeddedness: Communities of Choice and How to Make Sense of Activism and Research Abroad, Bernd Reiter
New Shapes of Revolution, Gustavo Esteva
The Accidental Activist Scholar: A Memoir on Reactive Boundary and Identity Work for Social Change within the Academy, Rob Benford
Leaving the Field: How to Write about Disappointment and Frustration in Collaborative Research, Ulrich Oslender
Invisible Heroes, Eshe Lewis
Part Two. Negotiating Racialized and Gendered Positionalities
El Muntuen America, Manuel Zapata Olivella
Activism as History Making: The Collective and the Personal in Collaborative Research with the Process of Black Communities in Colombia, Arturo Escobar
Out of Bounds: Negotiating Researcher Positionality in Brazil, Elizabeth Hordge-Freeman
Between Soapboxes and Shadows: Activism, Theory, and the Politics of Life and Death in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, Christen A. Smith
State Violence and the Ethnographic Encounter: Feminist Research and Racial Embodiment, Keisha-Khan Y. Perry
The Challenges Resulting from Combining Scientific Production and Social-Political Activism in the Brazilian Academy, Fernando Conceição
The Challenge of Doing Applied/Activist Anti-Racist Anthropology in Revolutionary Cuba, Gayle L. McGarrity
The style of reading in Renaissance Europe, as seen in the margins of books and in the texts of Renaissance intellectuals themselves, is deftly charted in this welcome volume from Anthony Grafton. Growing out of the Thomas Spencer Jerome Lectures that Anthony Grafton gave at the University of Michigan in 1992, this book describes the interaction between books and readers in the Renaissance, as seen in four major case studies.
Humanists Alberti, Pico, Budé, and Kepler, all major figures of their time and now major figures in intellectual history, are examined in the light of their distinctive ways of reading. Investigating a period of two centuries, Grafton vividly portrays the ways in which book/scholar interactions--and the established traditions that were reflected in these interactions--were part of and helped shape the subjects' Humanistic philosophy. The book also indicates how these traditions have implications for the modern literary scene.
Commerce with the Classics: Ancient Books and Renaissance Readers illustrates the immense variety of the humanist readers of the Renaissance. Grafton describes life in the Renaissance library, how the act of reading was shaped by the physical environment, and various styles of reading during the time. A strong sense of what skilled reading was like in the past is built up through anecdotes, philological analysis, and documents from a wide variety of sources, many of them unpublished.
This volume will be of special interest to Renaissance and intellectual historians, students of Renaissance literature, and classicists who concern themselves with the afterlife of their texts.
Anthony Grafton is Henry Putnam University Professor of History, Princeton University.
Digital Samaritans explores rhetorical delivery and cultural sovereignty in the digital humanities. The exigence for the book is rooted in a practical digital humanities project based on the digitization of manuscripts in diaspora for the Samaritan community, the smallest religious/ethnic group of 770 Samaritans split between Mount Gerizim in the Palestinian Authority and in Holon, Israel. Based on interviews with members of the Samaritan community and archival research, Digital Samaritans explores what some Samaritans want from their diaspora of manuscripts, and how their rhetorical goals and objectives relate to the contemporary existential and rhetorical situation of the Samaritans as a living, breathing people.
How does the circulation of Samaritan manuscripts, especially in digital environments, relate to their rhetorical circumstances and future goals and objectives to communicate their unique cultural history and religious identity to their neighbors and the world? Digital Samaritans takes up these questions and more as it presents a case for collaboration and engaged scholarship situated at the intersection of rhetorical studies and the digital humanities.
In this wide-ranging consideration of intellectual diasporas, historian Peter Burke questions what distinctive contribution to knowledge exiles and expatriates have made. The answer may be summed up in one word: deprovincialization. Historically, the encounter between scholars from different cultures was an education for both parties, exposing them to research opportunities and alternative ways of thinking. Deprovincialization was in part the result of mediation, as many émigrés informed people in their “hostland” about the culture of the native land, and vice versa. The detachment of the exiles, who sometimes viewed both homeland and hostland through foreign eyes, allowed them to notice what scholars in both countries had missed. Yet at the same time, the engagement between two styles of thought, one associated with the exiles and the other with their hosts, sometimes resulted in creative hybridization, for example, between German theory and Anglo-American empiricism. This timely appraisal is brimming with anecdotes and fascinating findings about the intellectual assets that exiles and immigrants bring to their new country, even in the shadow of personal loss.
In The Future without a Past, John Paul Russo goes beyond currently given reasons for the decline of the humanities and searches out its root causes in the technologization of everyday life. His main premise is that we are undergoing a transformation at the hands of technological imperatives such as rationalization, universalism, monism, and autonomy. The relation between ourselves and nature has altered to such a degree that we no longer live in a natural environment but in a technological one. According to Russo, technological values have actually eroded human values instead of being “humanized” by them.
What are the implications of this shift for the humanities, traditionally seen as safeguards of the human? Russo addresses this question by situating the decline of the humanities within the larger social and historical panorama. He explores how technological values have infiltrated the humanities to the point of weakening their instruction and undermining their force; at the same time, he shows how the humanities have confronted these trends and can continue to do so. Russo believes that if we understand how technology “works” and the nature of its powers, we will then know in which realms it must be accepted and where it should be resisted.
Russo outlines the components of the technological system and examines their impact on the educational system. He also discusses the loss of historical memory, including the so-called loss of the self and the transformation of the library. He studies the parallels between technological and literary values in criticism and theory, concluding with an analysis of the fiction of Don DeLillo, one of the most prominent contemporary novelists. DeLillo’s exploration of technology in American life, matched by a powerful critique of it from a broadly humanistic and religious perspective, serves to summarize the themes of the book as a whole.
The Future without a Past will appeal to scholars and students of literary studies, intellectual and cultural history, philosophy, ethics, media studies, and American studies, as well as to general readers who are seeking deeper insights into today’s cultural debates.
One of the most controversial books to come out of the academy in the last fifteen years is Martin Bernal's Black Athena. It has been a true cause celebre. Afrocentrists have both praised the book and claimed that Bernal stole from the work of black scholars to create his study of the Afroasiastic roots of classical civilization. Classicists feel passionately about what they perceive as an attack from an outsider on the origins not only of ancient Greece but of their own discipline. It seems that everyone has something to say about the book; the question is how many really understand it. In Heresy in the University, Jacques Berlinerblau provides an exegesis of the contents of Black Athena, making it accessible to a wider audience. As he clarifies and restates Bernal's opus, Berlinerblau identifies Bernal's flaws in reasoning and gaps in evidence. He cuts to the heart of Bernal's prose, singling out the key points of Bernal's argument, explaining and arranging them in a cogent manner. Berlinerblau addresses the critics' really important objections, including his own, and links each of them to the appropriate substantive argument in Black Athena. He goes beyond simple summary and exposition to present the underlying --stated and unstated--agendas of Bernal and his critics. Ultimately, he exposes both sides and asks what the flawed reasoning from all concerned reveals about the stakes in this key academic dispute and what that, in turn, says about the modern academy. Jacques Berlinerblau is an assistant professor and director of Judaic studies at Hofstra University.
This collection of essays on the social and political history of the modern South consider the region’s poor, racial mores and race relations, economic opportunity, Protestant activism, political coalitions and interest groups, social justice, and progressive reform.
History and Hope in the Heart of Dixie illuminates the dual role of historian and public advocate in modern America. In a time when the nation’s eyes have been focused by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita onto the vulnerability and dire condition of poor people in the South, the applicability of research, teaching, and activism for this voiceless element seems all the more relevant.
Responding to the example of Wayne Flynt, whose fierce devotion to his state of Alabama and its region has not blinded his recognition of the inequities and despair that define southern life for so many, the scholars assembled in this work present contributions to the themes Flynt so passionately explored in his own work. Two seasoned observers of southern history and culture—John Shelton Reed and Dan T. Carter—offer assessments of Flynt’s influence on the history profession as a whole and on the region of the South in particular.
Through newly unearthed texts virtually unknown in Andean studies, Indians and Mestizos in the "Lettered City" highlights the Andean intellectual tradition of writing in their long-term struggle for social empowerment and questions the previous understanding of the "lettered city" as a privileged space populated solely by colonial elites. Rarely acknowledged in studies of resistance to colonial rule, these writings challenged colonial hierarchies and ethnic discrimination in attempts to redefine the Andean role in colonial society.
Scholars have long assumed that Spanish rule remained largely undisputed in Peru between the 1570s and 1780s, but educated elite Indians and mestizos challenged the legitimacy of Spanish rule, criticized colonial injustice and exclusion, and articulated the ideas that would later be embraced in the Great Rebellion in 1781. Their movement extended across the Atlantic as the scholars visited the seat of the Spanish empire to negotiate with the king and his advisors for social reform, lobbied diverse networks of supporters in Madrid and Peru, and struggled for admission to religious orders, schools and universities, and positions in ecclesiastic and civil administration.
Indians and Mestizos in the "Lettered City" explores how scholars contributed to social change and transformation of colonial culture through legal, cultural, and political activism, and how, ultimately, their significant colonial critiques and campaigns redefined colonial public life and discourse. It will be of interest to scholars and students of colonial history, colonial literature, Hispanic studies, and Latin American studies.
The appetite for knowledge--wanting to know things--is very strong in humans. Some will sacrifice all other goods (sex, power, food, life itself) for it. But this is not a simple appetite, and this book treats some of its complications, deformations, beauties, and intensities.
Providing a sweeping millennium-plus history of the learned book in the West, John Willinsky puts current debates over intellectual property into context, asking what it is about learning that helped to create the concept even as it gave the products of knowledge a different legal and economic standing than other sorts of property.
Willinsky begins with Saint Jerome in the fifth century, then traces the evolution of reading, writing, and editing practices in monasteries, schools, universities, and among independent scholars through the medieval period and into the Renaissance. He delves into the influx of Islamic learning and the rediscovery of classical texts, the dissolution of the monasteries, and the founding of the Bodleian Library before finally arriving at John Locke, whose influential lobbying helped bring about the first copyright law, the Statute of Anne of 1710. Willinsky’s bravura tour through this history shows that learning gave rise to our idea of intellectual property while remaining distinct from, if not wholly uncompromised by, the commercial economy that this concept inspired, making it clear that today’s push for marketable intellectual property threatens the very nature of the quest for learning on which it rests.
This volume brings historians of science and social historians together to consider the role of "little tools"--such as tables, reports, questionnaires, dossiers, index cards--in establishing academic and bureaucratic claims to authority and objectivity.
From at least the eighteenth century onward, our science and society have been planned, surveyed, examined, and judged according to particular techniques of collecting and storing knowledge. Recently, the seemingly self-evident nature of these mundane epistemic and administrative tools, as well as the prose in which they are cast, has demanded historical examination.
The essays gathered here, arranged in chronological order by subject from the late seventeenth to the late twentieth century, involve close readings of primary texts and analyses of academic and bureaucratic practices as parts of material culture. The first few essays, on the early modern period, largely point to the existence of a "juridico-theological" framework for establishing authority. Later essays demonstrate the eclipse of the role of authority per se in the modern period and the emergence of the notion of "objectivity."
Most of the essays here concern the German cultural space as among the best exemplars of the academic and bureaucratic practices described above. The introduction to the volume, however, is framed at a general level; the closing essays also extend the analyses beyond Germany to broader considerations on authority and objectivity in historical practice.
The volume will interest scholars of European history and German studies as well as historians of science.
Peter Becker is Professor of Central European History, European University Institute. William Clark is Lecturer in History and Philosophy of Science, Cambridge University.
The Monkey and the Inkpot
Carla Nappi Harvard University Press, 2009 Library of Congress QH21.C6N37 2009 | Dewey Decimal 508.0951
This is the story of a Chinese doctor, his book, and the creatures that danced within its pages. The Monkey and the Inkpot introduces natural history in sixteenth-century China through the iconic Bencao gangmu (Systematic materia medica) of Li Shizhen (1518 - 1593). In the first book-length study in English of Li's text, Carla Nappi reveals a "cabinet of curiosities" of gems, beasts, and oddities whose author was devoted to using natural history to guide the application of natural and artificial objects as medical drugs.
A New Republic of Letters
Jerome McGann Harvard University Press, 2014 Library of Congress AZ186.M35 2014 | Dewey Decimal 001.3
Jerome McGann's manifesto argues that the history of texts and how they are preserved and accessed for interpretation are the overriding subjects of humanist study in the digital age. Theory and philosophy no longer suffice as an intellectual framework. But philology--out of fashion for decades--models these concerns with surprising fidelity.
Object Lessons and the Formation of Knowledge explores the museums, libraries, and special collections of the University of Michigan on its bicentennial. Since its inception, U-M has collected and preserved objects: biological and geological specimens; ethnographic and archaeological artifacts; photographs and artistic works; encyclopedia, textbooks, rare books, and documents; and many other items. These vast collections and libraries testify to an ambitious vision of the research university as a place where knowledge is accumulated, shared, and disseminated through teaching, exhibition, and publication. Today, two hundred years after the university’s founding, museums, libraries, and archives continue to be an important part of U-M, which maintains more than twenty distinct museums, libraries, and collections. Viewed from a historic perspective, they provide a window through which we can explore the transformation of the academy, its public role, and the development of scholarly disciplines over the last two centuries. Even as they speak to important facets of Michigan’s history, many of these collections also remain essential to academic research, knowledge production, and object-based pedagogy. Moreover, the university’s exhibitions and displays attract hundreds of thousands of visitors per year from the campus, regional, and global communities. Beautifully illustrated with color photographs of these world-renowned collections, this book will appeal to readers interested in the history of museums and collections, the formation of academic disciplines, and of course the University of Michigan.
With playfulness and a large dose of wit, Robert Merton traces the origin of Newton's aphorism, "If I have seen farther, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants." Using as a model the discursive and digressive style of Sterne's Tristram Shandy, Merton presents a whimsical yet scholarly work which deals with the questions of creativity, tradition, plagiarism, the transmission of knowledge, and the concept of progress.
"This book is the delightful apotheosis of donmanship: Merton parodies scholarliness while being faultlessly scholarly; he scourges pedantry while brandishing his own abstruse learning on every page. The most recondite and obscure scholarly squabbles are transmuted into the material of comedy as the ostensible subject is shouldered to one side by yet another hobby horse from Merton's densely populated stable. He has created a jeu d'esprit which is profoundly suggestive both in detail and as a whole."—Sean French, Times Literary Supplement
"Well argued and documented, Politics and Scholarship is a fascinating reading of a broader historical perspective of feminist concerns than just the three journals of focus: Feminist Studies, Frontiers, and Signs. The author's historical framework establishes an important overview that should have greater visibility."
-- J'nana Morse Sellery, coauthor of Elizabeth Bowen: A Bibliography
A Professor at the End of Time tells one professor’s story in the context of the rapid reconfiguration of higher education going on now, and analyzes what the job included before the supernova of technological innovation, the general influx of less-well-prepared students, and the diminution of state and federal support wrought wholesale changes on the profession.
The image of the lazy, media-obsessed American, preoccupied with vanity and consumerism, permeates popular culture and fuels critiques of American education. In Reimagining Popular Notions of American Intellectualism, Kelly Susan Bradbury challenges this image by examining and reimagining widespread conceptions of intellectualism that assume intellectual activity is situated solely in elite institutions of higher education.
Bradbury begins by tracing the origins and evolution of the narrow views of intellectualism that are common in the United States today. Then, applying a more inclusive and egalitarian definition of intellectualism, she examines the literacy and learning practices of three nonelite sites of adult public education in the United States: the nineteenth-century lyceum, a twentieth-century labor college, and a twenty-first-century GED writing workshop. Bradbury argues that together these three case studies teach us much about literacy, learning, and intellectualism in the United States over time and place. She concludes the book with a reflection on her own efforts to aid students in recognizing and resisting the rhetoric of anti-intellectualism that surrounds them and that influences their attitudes and actions.
Drawing on case studies as well as Bradbury’s own experiences with students, Reimagining Popular Notions of American Intellectualism demonstrates that Americans have engaged and do engage in the process and exercise of intellectual inquiry, contrary to what many people believe. Addressing a topic often overlooked by rhetoric, composition, and literacy studies scholars, it offers methods for helping students reimagine what it means to be intellectual in the twenty-first century.
Opening with an overview of the renewal of interest in rhetoric for inquiries of all kinds, this volume addresses rhetoric in individual disciplines—mathematics, anthropology, psychology, economics, sociology, political science, and history. Two essays draw from recent literary theory to suggest the contribution of the humanities to the rhetoric of inquiry, and several essays explore communications beyond the academy, particularly in women’s issues, religion, and law. The final essays speak from the field of communication studies, where the study of rhetoric usually makes its home.
Kristine Louise Haugen Harvard University Press, 2011 Library of Congress PA85.B4H38 2011 | Dewey Decimal 880.9
What warranted the skewering of Richard Bentley (whom Rhodri Lewis called “perhaps the most notable—and notorious—scholar ever to have English as a mother tongue”) by two of the literary giants of his day? Kristine Haugen offers a fascinating portrait of Europe’s most infamous classical scholar and the intellectual turmoil he set in motion.
RICHARD ALTICK The Ohio State University Press, 1987 Library of Congress PR56.A7 1987 | Dewey Decimal 820.720922
"A carefully detailed but by no means dull account of the more dignified pursuit of detection as practiced by literary scholars." --Kirkus Reviews
"Although [Altick' sensibly mentions that research may be a misadventure, he naturally enough plays up its glamour and romance; and its fascination for the scholar is transmitted to the reader. His book, then, as popular reading is first-rate, solid, rewarding, and lively" --The Nation
"a brisk, well-written book" --Time
"This is a volume of gracefully written essays celebrating the feats of literary detective work performed by scores of learned men and women passionately in love with the minutiae of literary scholarships." --The New York Times
"a more fascinating recital than any fictional mystery story, and its detectives are, it leads us to believe, more interesting in themselves--they are not mousy researchers--than fictional private eyes" --The Boston Globe
Richard Altick's classic portrayal of scholars on the prowl has delighted generations of readers. From the exposure of British rare book dealer Thomas Wise--the most famous authority of his day--as a master forger of first editions to the discovery of thousands of new James Boswell papers, Altick shows the scholar at work. Chaucer, Shakespeare, Wordsworth, Shelley, Keats, and many others surrender previously unrevealed secrets to these dogged researchers, whose ceaseless sleuthing has increased our knowledge and appreciation of both literature and the people who created it.
Richard D. Altick is Regent's Professor Emeritus of English at The Ohio State University. He is the author of The English Common Reader, Lives and Letters, To Be in England, Victorian Studies in Scarlet, Victorian People and Ideas, The Shows of London, Paintings from Books, and Deadly Encounters as well as numerous essays on English literature and culture.
Scholarship and Freedom
Geoffrey Galt Harpham Harvard University Press, 2020 Library of Congress AZ101.H37 2020 | Dewey Decimal 001.20922
A powerful and original argument that the practice of scholarship is grounded in the concept of radical freedom, beginning with the freedoms of inquiry, thought, and expression.
Why are scholars and scholarship invariably distrusted and attacked by authoritarian regimes? Geoffrey Galt Harpham argues that at its core, scholarship is informed by an emancipatory agenda based on a permanent openness to the new, an unlimited responsiveness to evidence, and a commitment to conversion. At the same time, however, scholarship involves its own forms of authority. As a worldly practice, it is a struggle for dominance without end as scholars try to disprove the claims of others, establish new versions of the truth, and seek disciples.
Scholarship and Freedom threads its general arguments through examinations of the careers of three scholars: W. E. B. Du Bois, who serves as an example of scholarly character formation; South African Bernard Lategan, whose New Testament studies became entangled on both sides of his country’s battles over apartheid; and Linda Nochlin, whose essay “Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?” virtually created the field of feminist art history.
The term “subalternity” refers to a condition of subordination brought about by colonization or other forms of economic, social, racial, linguistic, and/or cultural dominance. Subaltern studies is, therefore, a study of power. Who has it and who does not. Who is gaining it and who is losing it. Power is intimately related to questions of representation—to which representations have cognitive authority and can secure hegemony and which do not and cannot. In this book John Beverley examines the relationship between subalternity and representation by analyzing the ways in which that relationship has been played out in the domain of Latin American studies.
Dismissed by some as simply another new fashion in the critique of culture and by others as a postmarxist heresy, subaltern studies began with the work of Ranajit Guha and the South Asian Subaltern Studies collective in the 1980s. Beverley’s focus on Latin America, however, is evidence of the growing province of this field. In assessing subaltern studies’ purposes and methods, the potential dangers it presents, and its interactions with deconstruction, poststructuralism, cultural studies, Marxism, and political theory, Beverley builds his discussion around a single, provocative question: How can academic knowledge seek to represent the subaltern when that knowledge is itself implicated in the practices that construct the subaltern as such? In his search for answers, he grapples with a number of issues, notably the 1998 debate between David Stoll and Rigoberta Menchú over her award-winning testimonial narrative, I, Rigoberta Menchú. Other topics explored include the concept of civil society, Florencia Mallon’s influential Peasant and Nation, the relationship between the Latin American “lettered city” and the Túpac Amaru rebellion of 1780–1783, the ideas of transculturation and hybridity in postcolonial studies and Latin American cultural studies, multiculturalism, and the relationship between populism, popular culture, and the “national-popular” in conditions of globalization.
This critique and defense of subaltern studies offers a compendium of insights into a new form of knowledge and knowledge production. It will interest those studying postcolonialism, political science, cultural studies, and Latin American culture, history, and literature.
Crime writer Sara Paretsky is known the world over for her acclaimed series of mysteries starring Chicago private investigator V. I. Warshawski, now in its seventeenth installment. Paretsky’s work has long been inflected with history—for her characters the past looms large in the present—and in her decades-long career, she has been recognized for transforming the role of women in contemporary crime fiction.
What’s less well-known is that before Paretsky began her writing career, she earned a PhD in history from the University of Chicago with a dissertation on moral philosophy and religion in New England in the early and mid-nineteenth century. Now, for the first time, fans of Paretsky can read that earliest work, Words, Works, and Ways of Knowing.
Paretsky here analyzes attempts by theologians at Andover Seminary, near Boston, to square and secure Calvinist religious beliefs with emerging knowledge from history and the sciences. She carefully shows how the open-minded scholasticism of these theologians paradoxically led to the weakening of their intellectual credibility as conventional religious belief structures became discredited, and how this failure then incited reactionary forces within Calvinism. That conflict between science and religion in the American past is of interest on its face, but it also sheds light on contemporary intellectual battles.
Rounding out the book, leading religious scholar Amanda Porterfield provides an afterword discussing where Paretsky’s work fits into the contemporary study of religion. And in a sobering—sometimes shocking—preface, Paretsky paints a picture of what it was like to be a female graduate student at the University of Chicago in the 1970s. A treat for Paretsky’s many fans, this book offers a glimpse of the development of the mind behind the mysteries.