Times Higher Education Review on Senses of the Subject

Senses of the Subject, by Judith Butler

Danielle Sands on a collection of philosophical essays that focus on passions, desires and sensory experience.

Book review: Senses of the Subject, by Judith Butler
“With this inspiring book – simultaneously a philosophical dispossession of philosophy, a paean to sensation and an affirmation of the “radically impossible venture” of ethics and politics – she edges towards a palpable, outward-looking alternative to philosophical chest-beating.” READ FULL ARTICLE

Danielle Sands is lecturer in philosophy, Royal Holloway, University of London.


Senses of the Subject
By Judith Butler
Fordham University Press, 228 pages, £69.00 and £16.99
ISBN 9780823264667 and 4674
Published 2 March 2015

Senses of the Subject, by Judith Butler Danielle Sands on a collection of philosophical essays that focus on passions, desires and sensory experience. BY DANIELLE SANDS “With this inspiring book – simultaneously a philosophical dispossession of philosophy, a paean to sensation … Full Story

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Making Italian America wins John G. Cawelti Award for the Best Textbook/Primer

Presented by the Pop Culture Association and the American Culture Association, this award is named after John Cawelti, a pioneer in the study of Popular and American Culture. His numerous works established the basis for the study of the literature and film for popular audiences. Among his most prominent books are Apostles of the Self-Made Man Adventure, Mystery, and Romance: Formula Stories as Art and Popular Culture, The Six-gun Mystique, and The Spy Story.

“Through its attentiveness to Italian-American consumers and the U.S. consumption of Italianness, this collection of essays makes a compelling case for taste as a leading determinant of ethnic identity. Ranging from nineteenth-century immigration to twenty-first century popular culture, from fashion to Italian-themed restaurants, from one side of the Atlantic to the other and back across again, this volume casts ethnicity as more a matter of style than of tradition, due to its ever-changing nature. Like the very best lasagnes—layered, multi-textured, the whole a transcendent blending of the constituent parts—Making Italian America reveals how we have all come to be at least partly Italian and what this Italianness means.”—Kristin Hoganson, author of Consumers’ Imperium: The Global Production of American Domesticity, 1865-1920

Making Italian America: Consumer Culture and the Production of Ethnic Identities by Simone Cinotto follows in the footsteps of Cawelti. Cinotto offers a fascinating exploration of consumer culture in Italian American history and life, the role of consumption in the production of ethnic identities, and the commodification of cultural difference.

Presented by the Pop Culture Association and the American Culture Association, this award is named after John Cawelti, a pioneer in the study of Popular and American Culture. His numerous works established the basis for the study of the literature … Full Story

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113th Anniversary of Modern Air Conditioning

THE POLITICS OF COOLTH
By Salvatore Basile, author of Cool: How Air Conditioning Changed Everything

Have you ever gone to a birthday celebration that disintegrated into a fight? Well, there’s one starting up now.

July 17, for you party-prone types, marks an important anniversary—specifically, it marks the day in 1902 that youthful engineer Willis Carrier unveiled the plans for his latest invention. He called it the “Apparatus for Treating Air.” Now it’s called air conditioning. And for the last 113 years, all of us have been rejoicing over it.

Or perhaps not all of us.

On July 4, the New York Times ran the Kate Murphy article, “Enduring Summer’s Deep Freeze,” a piece that asks the question, “Why is America so over air-conditioned?” Three days later, Slate ran a response: Daniel Engber’s “Hot and Bothered,” expressing annoyance at “members of the brrr-geoisie” (that’s a good one) and stating, “These people love to hate AC, and they drive me nuts.”

Before anyone starts throwing cake, let’s look more closely. First off, has anyone noticed that these articles are complaining about different things? Ms. Murphy’s piece is critical of the air conditioning found in commercial buildings; while Mr. Engber’s rebuttal isn’t one; it centers on the attitudes surrounding home cooling. (Frozen) apples to (frozen) oranges.

Regarding that first complaint, consider: We all love fiddling with our home thermostats, so why wouldn’t we go a little ballistic when we’re freezing in public and helpless to do anything about it? Of course Ms. Murphy’s point is completely justified. A whole lot of commercial spaces are needlessly frigid in July, and without a doubt that is off-putting. But remember that people have been complaining about air-conditioned public spaces ever since there were air-conditioned public spaces to complain about, so neither she nor anyone else should be surprised by this. (Especially as Ms. Murphy lives in Houston, proudly called “one of the most air-conditioned cities in the world.” Its downtown district is honeycombed with nearly seven miles of pedestrian tunnels, so thoroughly chilled that coffee shops offer hot cocoa, in midsummer, “for those cold days.” If anyone would be familiar with too much coolth, she would.)

As for Mr. Engber, he seems to run into a lot of people who “proudly say they’d rather use electric fans” and hold up air conditioning as “self-indulgent.” To which my recommendation would be: find new companions. There has always been a fascinating amount of emotional baggage attached to the idea of summer cooling as opposed to wintertime heating—“God made hot weather so you should put up with it,” went one version in the 1950s—and if someone wants to be righteous or conservationist or Green by going without cooling, congratulations. But when it comes to pontificating about what temperatures others should and shouldn’t find livable in the hot season—that’s a dangerous game, one that should never be played among friends. (Or strangers.) In my own experience, one friend prefers summertime temperatures no higher than 68°, while my grandmother usually turned on her bedroom heat in August. Would I presume to comment on either choice? Not on your tintype.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go check out the dessert table. I love birthdays.

THE POLITICS OF COOLTH By Salvatore Basile, author of Cool: How Air Conditioning Changed Everything Have you ever gone to a birthday celebration that disintegrated into a fight? Well, there’s one starting up now. July 17, for you party-prone types, … Full Story

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2015 Yarrow Mamout Archaeology Project

History is continuing to unfold at 3324 Dent Pl. NW. in Washington, D.C.

An archaeological dig has commenced on land that was once owned and occupied by a slave brought from Africa.

Author James H. Johnston has been instrumental in bringing Yarrow Mamout’s story to light. Johnston’s book, From Slave Ship to Harvard is the true story of an African American family in Maryland over six generations. Johnston has reconstructed a unique narrative of black struggle and achievement from paintings, photographs, books, diaries, court records, legal documents, and oral histories.

From Slave Ship to Harvard traces the family from the colonial period and the American Revolution through the Civil War to Harvard and finally today, where Mamout’s story continues.

#ReadUP

History is continuing to unfold at 3324 Dent Pl. NW. in Washington, D.C. An archaeological dig has commenced on land that was once owned and occupied by a slave brought from Africa. Author James H. Johnston has been instrumental in … Full Story

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Gay Fathers & Their Children

You know the old adage: First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage. Given SCOTUS’s ruling in favor of same-sex marriage, it seems appropriate that gay fatherhood is the next thing on many Americans’ minds.

Author and anthropologist Aaron Goodfellow dives into the issue with Gay Fathers, Their Children, and the Making of Kinship. His work began all the way back in 1995 while he was brainstorming for his masters dissertation. “I was spending a lot of time in Central Park because I had a big dog, and I met two men who had just adopted a child,” Goodfellow remembers. “I thought, ‘Wow, this is fantastic.’” Add to the mix the late-in-life realization that his own deceased father had been gay, and the study slowly developed into something “intensely personal and autobiographical.”

Fast-forward 20 years and 35 families later, and Goodfellow now presents what he calls a “very traditional, almost old-school anthropological study” on the differences between gay fatherhood and normative heterosexual parenthood. The families featured in the book—many of whom were found via Provincetown Family Weekend’s participant database—represent most of the mid-Atlantic coast, including Long Island and New York City.

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Posted by NextMagazine on 6/18/15

#ReadUP #PRIDE #MarriageEquality #Lovewins

You know the old adage: First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage. Given SCOTUS’s ruling in favor of same-sex marriage, it seems appropriate that gay fatherhood is the next thing on many Americans’ … Full Story

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