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2006, June 11; 19:05 ::: Modernism and the Culture of Market Society (2004) - John Xiros Cooper

In search of Terry Eagleton and John Carey

Modernism and the Culture of Market Society (2004) - John Xiros Cooper Christopher L. Pines [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Leftist or liberal scholars, like John R. Harrison, Terry Eagleton, and John Carey, have [...] analyzed modernist elitism in terms of class prejudice, as one more essentially bourgeois routine for putting distance between a threatened middle class and the Sweeney-ish proletarian masses. --page 3 via http://www.cambridge.org/uk/catalogue/catalogue.asp?isbn=0521834864&ss=exc [Jun 2006]

Book Description
Many critics argue that the modernist avant-garde were always in opposition to the commercial values of market driven society. For John Xiros Cooper, the avant-garde bears a more complex relation to capitalist culture than previously acknowledged. He argues that in their personal relationships, gender roles and sexual contacts, the Modernist avant-garde epitomised the impact of capitalism on everyday life. Cooper shows how the new social, cultural, and economic practices aimed to defend cultural values in a commercial age, but, in this task, modernism became the subject of a profound historical irony. Its own characterising techniques, styles, and experiments, deployed to resist the new nihilism of the capitalist market, eventually became the preferred cultural style of the very market culture which the first Modernists opposed. In this broad ranging study John Xiros Cooper explores this provocative theme across a wide range of Modernist authors, including Joyce, Eliot, Stein and Barnes.

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See also: commodity - commercial - modernism - low modernism - capitalism

2006, June 11; 19:05 ::: Modernism and fascism

"Ideologically speaking, Fascism is as double-visaged as the Modernism with which it was sometimes involved, casting a backward glance to the primitive and primordial while steaming dynamically ahead into the gleaming technological future. Like Modernism, it is both archaic and avant-garde, sifting pre-modern mythologies for precious seeds of the post-modern future. ... Fascism is statist rather than royalist, revolutionary rather than traditionalist, petty-bourgeois rather than patrician, pagan rather than Christian. In its brutal cult of power and contempt for pedigree and civility, it has little in common with [T.S.] Eliot's benignly land-owning, regionalist, Morris-dancing, church-centred social ideal.

Even so, there are affinities as well as contrasts between Fascism and [British] conservative reaction. If the former touts a demonic version of blood and soil, the latter promotes an angelic one. Both are elitist, authoritarian creeds that sacrifice freedom to organic order; both are hostile to liberal democracy and unbridled market-place economics; both invoke myth and symbol, elevating intuition over analytical reason." -- Terry Eagleton, in the London Review of Books, Vol. 24 No. 18; 19th September 2002. --http://www.lrb.co.uk/v24/n18/eagl01_.html

See also: fascism - modernism - Terry Eagleton

2006, June 11; 19:05 ::: Ideology and False Consciousness: Marx and His Historical Progenitors (1993) - Christopher L. Pines

Ideology and False Consciousness: Marx and His Historical Progenitors (1993) - Christopher L. Pines [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Argues that Marx thought of ideology as false consciousness, and that his ideas on the matter were influenced by the views of the Baconian-French Enlightenment and by Hegelian/Feuerbachian philosophies. Shows how Marx and Engels applied the conception to demonstrate how people thought false things were true in regard to a class-divided society.

See also: continental philosophy - false consciousness - Marx - cultural marxism

2006, June 11; 19:05 ::: Jettisoning the Marxist equation: "ideology=false consciousness"

Žižek follows Louis Althusser (among others) in jettisoning the Marxist equation: "ideology=false consciousness." Ideology, to all intents and purposes, is consciousness. Ideology does not "mask" the real—one cannot achieve true consciousness. This being the case, post-ideological postmodern "knowingness"—the wink wink nudge nudge cynicism and irony of postmodern cultural production—does not reveal the truth, the real, the hard kernel. Knowing that we are being "lied" to is hardly the stuff of revolution when ideology isn't, and never has been, simply a matter of consciousness (cynicism, irony, and so on), of subject positions, but is the very stuff of everyday praxis itself. The cynics and ironists, not to mention the deconstructionists et. al., may KNOW that reality is an "ideological construction"—some have even read their Lacan and Derrida—but in their daily practice, caught up in an apparently unalterable world of exchange-values (capital), they do their part to sustain that construction in any case. As Marx would say, it is their very life process that is ideological, what they know, or what they think they know, being neither here nor there. The postmodern cultural artifact—the "critique," the "incredulity"—is itself merely a symptom/commodity/fetish. Thus has capital commodified even the cynicism that purports to unmask its "reality," to "emancipate." --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slavoj_Zizek#Postmodernism [Jun 2006]

See also: continental philosophy - false consciousness - cultural marxism - postmodernism

2006, June 11; 19:05 ::: The great triad of Marx-Nietzsche-Freud

Nietzsche's Corps/E (1993) Geoff Waite [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

More recently, Lacanian media theorist, philosopher, and political analyst Slavoj Žižek repeats the today obligatory reference to “the great triad of Marx-Nietzsche-Freud,” which is said by him to exemplify “the very essence of theoretical modernism, the revelation of the ‘effective contents' behind the ‘false consciousness' (of ideology, of morality, of the ego). --page 114

See also: continental philosophy - Nietzsche - Marx - Sigmund Freud

2006, June 11; 19:05 ::: Why did the masses desire fascism?

Thenceforth, while very interested by Wilhelm Reich's fundamental question — why did the masses desire fascism? — [Deleuze and Guattari] criticized his dualist theory leading to a rational social reality on one side, and an irrational desire reality on the other side. Anti-Śdipus was thus a tentative attempt to think beyond Freudo-Marxism; and Deleuze and Guattari often feigned to pretend to do for Freud what Marx had done for Adam Smith. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Desiring-production [Jun 2006]

See also: continental philosophy - Gilles Deleuze - desire - fascism

2006, June 11; 19:05 ::: Baudelaire and Schizoanalysis: The Socio-Poetics of Modernism (1993) - Eugene W. Holland

Baudelaire and Schizoanalysis: The Socio-Poetics of Modernism (1993) - Eugene W. Holland [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

This is the first book to apply the principles of schizoanalysis to literary history and cultural studies. By resituating psychoanalysis in its socio-economic and cultural context, this framework provides a new and illuminating approach to Baudelaire's poetry and art criticism. Professor Holland demonstrates the impact of military authoritarianism and the capitalist market (as well as Baudelaire's much-discussed family circumstances) on the psychology and poetics of the writer, who abandoned his romantic idealism in favor of a modernist cynicism that has characterized modern culture ever since.

First Sentence:
"Au fond del'Inconnu pour trouver du nouveau!" To the depths of the unknown to find something new: is this the battle cry of modernism or an advertising slogan?

Schizoanalysis was first introduced in 1972 by the philosopher Gilles Deleuze and the psychoanalyst Felix Guattari in their book Anti-Oedipus. Its formulation was continued in their follow-up work, A Thousand Plateaus. The concept takes many different definitions over the course of its development in their collaborative work and individually in the work of Guattari. The most precise definition however is given in Felix Guattari's untranslated work Cartographies Schizoanalytiques as "the analysis of the incidence of Dispositions [agencements] of enunciation upon semiotic and subjective productions, in a given problematic context". Put in other terms, it is the practice of meta-modelization of endo- and exo-referentialities, and the modelization of the transformation of such referencialities. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schizoanalysis [Jun 2006]

See also: Gilles Deleuze - psychoanalysis - Baudelaire

2006, June 11; 19:05 ::: Nietzsche on Modernism and the machine age

"The press, the machine, the railway, the telegraph are premises whose thousand-year conclusion no one has yet dared to draw" --Nietzsche, 1878

Critique of mass culture
Along with Karl Marx, Friedrich Nietzsche can be read as a great theorist and critic of modernity who carried out a "ruthless criticism of all that exists." Nietzsche's powerful polemics against religion, morality, and philosophy deploy a mixture of Enlightenment-inspired criticism and romantic vitalism to attack the life-negating aspects of modern culture. In addition, Nietzsche criticizes many of the institutions and values of modern societies as oppressing bodily energies and creativity, while blocking the generation of stronger individuals and a more vigorous society and culture. In his appraisals of the modern age, Nietzsche developed one of the first sustained critiques of mass culture and society, the state, and bureaucratic discipline and regimentation, producing perspectives that deeply influenced later discourses of modernity. --http://www.uta.edu/huma/illuminations/kell22.htm [Jun 2006]

Nietzsche was generally pessimistic about the impact of modern social processes. For the most part, he felt that modern society and culture had become so chaotic, fragmented, "arbitrary," and devoid of "creative force" that it has lost the resources to create a vital culture and ultimately advanced the decline of the human species. He especially thought that the press and mass culture were forces of degeneration and mediocrity, focusing attention on the trivial, superfluous, and sensational, and creating homogenization and conformity. He did not, however, develop systematic critiques of the press or specific forms of mass culture, except, perhaps his critique of Strauss and cultural philistinism, or Wagner and Wagnerianism which he eventually came to see as a lowbrow exhibition of mass culture and bad taste. He thus did not develop an institutional critique of the media or the culture industries, as did Adorno and Horkheimer, or detailed criticisms of the phenomena of mass culture, as did those in the field of critical cultural studies. --http://www.uta.edu/huma/illuminations/kell22.htm [Jun 2006]

See also: modernism - Nietzsche - machine age - Douglas Kellner - mass culture

2006, June 10; 19:05 ::: High Art: Charles Baudelaire and the Origins of Modernist Painting (1996) - David Carrier

High Art: Charles Baudelaire and the Origins of Modernist Painting (1996) - David Carrier [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

A close reading of Baudelaire's most important writings on art criticism.

The great poet Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867) was also an extremely influential art critic. High Art relates the philosophical issues posed by Baudelaire's art writing to the theory and practice of modernist and postmodernist painting. Baudelaire wrote in an age of transition, David Carrier argues, an era divided by the Revolution of 1848, the historical break that played for him a role now taken within modernism by the political revolts of 1968. Moving from the grand tradition of Delacroix to the images of modern life made by Constantin Guys, this movement from "high" to "low, " from the unified world of correspondences to the fragmented images of contemporary city life, motivates Baudelaire's equivalent to the post-1968 turn away from formalist art criticism. Viewed from the perspective of the 1990s, Carrier argues, the issues raised by Baudelaire's criticism and creative writing provide a way of understanding the situation of art writing in our own time.

See also: modern art - Charles Baudelaire - art criticism - 1860s - high art

2006, June 10; 19:05 ::: Nature Illuminated : Flora and Fauna from the Court of Emperor Rudolf II (1997)

In search of Rudolf II

Nature Illuminated : Flora and Fauna from the Court of Emperor Rudolf II (1997) [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

The most important legacy of the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II is the Mira calligraphiae monumenta, a manuscript comprised of illuminated pages of calligraphy. Around 1561 a master calligrapher wrote the text as proof of his preeminence among scribes. After his death, a master illustrator was employed to illuminate his writing, and the outcome is a rare combination of words and images in small-scale drawings--considered one of the wonders of Renaissance Europe. This book culls different plates from the collection that are each unique, consisting of lavishly executed text in Roman and Hebrew letters accompanied by realistic and detailed drawings of plants, animals, and insects.

Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor
Rudolf II von Habsburg was an emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, king of Bohemia, and king of Hungary.

Rudolf II was one of the most eccentric European monarchs of that or any other period. He was a great lover of art and architecture, and employed Arcimboldo as Court Painter. He was also fascinated with the sciences, and both Tycho Brahe and Johannes Kepler were in his court as well. He also kept an amazing menagerie of exotic animals.

Also in his court were a number of alchemists, such as Edward Kelley and John Dee. He gave Prague a mystical reputation that remains, in part, to this day. Alchemists' Alley, part of the grounds of Prague Castle, is a popular visiting place. And he is closely associated with the legend of the Golem, partly because he met with the Maharal, Rabbi Loew. It is rumored that Rudolf collected dwarfs and had a regiment of giants in his army. Rudolf also surrounded himself with artists such as Giuseppe Arcimboldo and Bartholomeus Spranger. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rudolf_II,_Holy_Roman_Emperor [Jun 2006]

See also: nature - Bohemia - eccentricity - Arcimboldo - cabinet of curiosities (kunstkammer) - 1500s

2006, June 10; 19:05 ::: Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta (1590s) - Joris Hoefnagel

In search of the grotesque

Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta (1590s) - Joris Hoefnagel
Image sourced here. [Jun 2006]

The adjective grotesque, was originally applied to the style of the decorative frescoes found in the buried ruins of Nero’s Domus Aurea at Rome. These long-buried chambers were rediscovered in the last two decades of the 15th Century. The strange ornamental designs that were found there ‘featured elaborate fantasies with symmetrical anatomical impossibilities, small beasts, stylised human heads, and delicately-traced, indeterminate foliage all merged into one unified decorative whole.’ Pliny, in his Natural History, recorded the principal artist’s name: Fabullus; recounting how the painter went ‘for only a few hours each day to the “Golden House” to work while the light was right…’ --http://www.spamula.net/blog/2006/06/faces_of_the_grotesque [Jun 2006]

Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta
One of the most fascinating, to my eyes, of the artworks discussed in the book is an illustrated manuscript entitled Mira Calligraphiae Monumenta, a collaboration of sorts between the Croatian calligrapher Georg Bocksay and the Flemish miniaturist and illustrator Joris Hoefnagel. Bocksay, a virtuoso penman, had been commissioned to compile what amounted to a very elaborate calligraphy sampler by his patron, Emperor Ferdinand I. Thirty years later, Ferdinand's grandson (Rudolf II), asked Hoefnagel to illuminate the manuscript, a task he executed to outstandingly beautiful effect: --http://www.spamula.net/blog/archives/000108.html [Jun 2006]

Joris Hoefnagel
Joris Hoefnagel (1545 - 1601), Flemish painter and engraver, the son of a diamond merchant, was born at Antwerp.

He travelled abroad, making drawings from archaeological subjects, and was a pupil of Jan Bol at Mechlin. He was afterwards patronized by the elector of Bavaria at Munich, where he stayed eight years, and by the Emperor Rudolph at Prague. He died at Vienna in 1601.

He is famous for his miniature work, especially on a missal in the imperial library at Vienna; he painted animals and plants to illustrate works on natural history; and his engravings (especially for Braun's Civitates orbis terrarum, 1572, and Ortelius's Theatrum orbis terrarum, 1570) give him an interesting place among early topographical draftsmen. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joris_Hoefnagel [Jun 2006]

In the mid-1590s Hoefnagel began the process of adding illuminations to Bocskay’s calligraphic masterpiece (Vignau-Wilberg 1992b, 16-18). Hoefnagel’s task was formidable. When Hoefnagel began the task of adding illuminations to the codex, the writing model book had rested undisturbed in Emperor Rudolf’s Kunstkammer for almost thirty years. --http://www.slais.ubc.ca/courses/libr559f/04-05-st1/portfolios/G_Bahnemann/Mira_Paper.pdf [Jun 2006]

Mira calligraphiae monumenta : A Sixteenth-century Calligraphic Manuscript inscribed by Georg Bocskay and Illuminated by Joris Hoefnagel (1590s) [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Book Description
In 1561-62, Georg Bocskay, imperial secretary to the Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I, inscribed the Mira calligraphiae monumenta as a testament to his preeminence among scribes. He assembled a vast selection of contemporary and historical scripts, which nearly thirty years later were further embellished by Joris Hoefnagel, Europe's last great manuscript illuminator. This book, now in the collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum, is reproduced here in complete facsimile form, accompanied by a commentary that includes a full description; a discussion of its patron, Rudolf II, and his cultural and historical milieu; the biographies of Hoefnagel and Bocskay; and an analysis of the manuscript's role in their careers. The introduction discusses the broader issues raised by the manuscript. Topics include Hoefnagel's nature imagery, which encompasses plants, fruits, and small animals, and its relation to the spread of interest in botany and zoology at the end of the sixteenth century. Another topic is calligraphy and its place in the art and culture of the sixteenth century. The manuscript's remarkable calligraphy will be of particular interest not only to scholars but to collectors, graphic designers, and typographers as well.

See also: grotesque - grotesque art - fantastic art - Fabullus - Rome - 1500s

2006, June 09; 19:05 ::: Civilisation (1969) - Kenneth Clark

Television is worth a thousand books

Civilisation (1969) - Kenneth Clark [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Product Description
The eminent art historian Sir Kenneth Clark was commissioned to write and present an epic examination of Western European culture, defining what he considered to be the crucial phases of its development. Civilisation: A Personal View by Lord Clark would be more than two years in the making, with filming in over 100 locations across 13 countries. The lavish series was hailed as a masterpiece when it was first transmitted in 1969.

Civilisation (full title, Civilisation: A Personal View) was a popular TV series outlining the history of Western society produced by the BBC and aired in 1969 on BBC Two. Kenneth Clark wrote and presented the series and also wrote the book Civilisation: A Personal View published in 1970. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civilisation_%28television_series%29 [Jun 2006]

See also: television - documentary film - civilisation - 1969

2006, June 09; 19:05 ::: High Culture: Reflections on Addiction and Modernity (2003) - Anna Alexander, Mark S. Roberts (Editor)

High Culture: Reflections on Addiction and Modernity (2003) - Anna Alexander, Mark S. Roberts (Editor) [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Book Description
Addresses the place of addiction in modern art, literature, philosophy, and psychology, including its effects on the works of such thinkers and writers as Heidegger, Nietzsche, DeQuincey, Breton, and Burroughs.

From the Back Cover
This is the first comprehensive text to address addiction and its multiple effects on and extensions into art, literature, philosophy, and psychology. Most research into addiction has taken place within the disciplines of medicine, criminology, politics, and social psychology. When seen from a broad cultural perspective, however, addiction emerges directly alongside modernity, haunting its various discourses of digression, dissent, and the transcendence of the commonplace. Who could even imagine modern writing without the addictive, visionary excesses of writers like Baudelaire, DeQuincey, Poe, Burroughs, or Artaud? Or, for that matter, modern culture without its "outsiders," its incorrigible addicts, its defaced subjects: smokers, users, overeaters, alcoholics, the insane? Taking a cultural studies approach to addiction, High Culture offers a readable and accessible collection of essays on these socially marginalized practices and discourses so central to modernity.

See also: Modernism - psychotropes in literature - high culture - addiction

2006, June 09; 19:05 ::: The Ways of Telling: The Work of John Berger (1987) - Geoff Dyer

In search of John Berger

The Ways of Telling: The Work of John Berger (1987) - Geoff Dyer [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Geoff Dyer (born June 5, 1958) is an author. He lives in London. He is best known as the author of But Beautiful, which won the Somerset Maugham Award, and has been called (by Keith Jarrett, for example) the best book ever written about jazz. Other notable titles are Paris Trance, Out of Sheer Rage (a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award), and Yoga For People Who Can't Be Bothered To Do It. He has contributed articles to The Guardian, The Independent, the New Statesman and Esquire. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geoff_Dyer [Jun 2006]

See also: John Berger - art criticism

2006, June 09; 19:05 ::: Marxism and the Interpretation of Culture (1987) - Cary Nelson, Lawrence Grossberg (Editor)

In search of cultural Marxism

Marxism and the Interpretation of Culture (1987) - Cary Nelson, Lawrence Grossberg (Editor) [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

"As we approach the later years of the twentieth century, Fanon's characteristic candor and Du Bois's ominous prophecy continue to challenge the Marxist tradition..." (more)

See also: Lawrence Grossberg - Marxism - interpretation - culture theory

2006, June 09; 19:05 ::: Seeing Through Berger (1980) - Peter Fuller

In search of visual culture

Seeing Through Berger (1980) - Peter Fuller [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Ways of Seeing was the subject of a detailed but misjudged critique in Peter Fuller's Seeing Berger (1980). The book was subsequently reissued with the title Seeing Through Berger and marked an abrupt turn against Berger by this previously loyal supporter. --http://litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=380 [Jun 2006]

--http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter Fuller [Jun 2006]

See also: John Berger - art criticism

2006, June 09; 19:05 ::: Cocaine (1921) - Pitigrilli

In search of banned books

Cocaine (1921) - Pitigrilli [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Pitigrilli (pseudonym for Dino Serge), born in Turin May 9, 1893, died in 1975) was an Italian writer. Cocaďne (1921) is his most famous novel. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pitigrilli [Jun 2006]

Inspired by:
C.J. Aarts & Mizzi van der Pluijm, Verboden boeken. Verboden door pausen en dictators, puriteinen en boekenhaters, De Bijenkorf, Amsterdam, 1989

See also: literature censorship - psychotropes in literature - cocaine - Italian literature - 1921

2006, June 07; 19:05 ::: Fringe and Fortune (1996) - Wesley Monroe, Jr.

In search of the hierarchy of genres

Fringe and Fortune (1996) - Wesley Monroe, Jr. [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

The discussion of high and popular culture does not suppose that individuals possess knowledge of particular cultural objects, but only some knowledge of a hierarchy of genres. I have argued that one of the most widely shared elements of modern culture consists in the awareness of which kinds of cultural objects are highbrow and which are popular. Therefore, the most important questions of cultural mediation center around differences between highbrow and popular genres. --Fringe and Fortune (1996) - Wesley Monroe, Jr., page 73

Although theater is now a highbrow form, this was not so until the nineteenth century. --Fringe and Fortune (1996) - Wesley Monroe, Jr., page 73

Why does the distinction between high and popular art persist in spite of postmodernist predictions that it should vanish? Departing from the conventional view that such distinctions are class-related, Wesley Shrum concentrates instead on the way individuals form opinions about culture through the mediation of critics. He shows that it is the extent to which critics shape the reception of an art form that determines its place in the cultural hierarchy. Those who patronize "lowbrow" art--stand-up comedy, cabaret, movies, and popular music--do not heed critical opinions nearly as much as do those who patronize "highbrow" art--theater, opera, and classical music. Thus the role of critics is crucial to understanding the nature of cultural hierarchy and its persistence. Shrum supports his argument through an inquiry into the performing arts, focusing on the Edinburgh Fringe, the world's largest and most diverse art festival.

Beginning with eighteenth-century London playhouses and print media, where performance art criticism flourished, Shrum examines the triangle of mediation involving critics, spectators, and performers. The Fringe is shown to parallel modern art worlds, where choices proliferate along with the demand for guidance. Using interviews with critics and performers, analysis of audiences, and published reviews as well as dramatic vignettes, Shrum reveals the impact of critics on high art forms and explores the "status bargain" in which consumers are influenced by experts in return for prestige. --from the publisher

See also: fringe - theatre - genre - art criticism - hierarchy

2006, June 07; 19:05 ::: Modernism and the Critical Spirit (2000) - Eugene Goodheart

In search of Modernism, Baudelaire, Pater, Arnold and Ruskin

Modernism and the Critical Spirit (2000) - Eugene Goodheart [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Complaints about the decline of critical standards in literature and culture in general have been voiced for much of the twentieth century. These have extended from F.R. Leavis's laments for a "lost center of intelligence and urbane spirit", to current opposition to the predominance of radical critical theory in contemporary literature departments. Humanist criticism, which has as its object the quality of life as well as works of art, may well lack authority in the contemporary world. Even amid the disruptions of the industrial revolution, nineteenth-century humanists such as Matthew Arnold, John Ruskin, and Thomas Carlyle could assume a positive order of value and shared habits of imaginative perception and understanding between writers and readers. Eugene Goodheart argues that, by contrast, contemporary criticism is infused with the skepticism of modernist aesthetics. It has will fully rejected the very idea of moral authority.

Goodheart starts from the premise that questions about the moral authority of literature and criticism often turn upon a prior question of what happens when the sacred disappears or is subjected to the profane. He focuses on contending spiritual views, in particular the dialectic between the Protestant-inspired, largely English humanist tradition of Carlyle, Ruskin, Arnold, and D.H. Lawrence and the decay of Catholicism represented by James Joyce and T.S. Eliot. Goodheart argues that literary modernism, in distancing itself from natural and social vitality, tends to render suspect all privileged positions. It thereby undermines the critical act, which assumes the priority of a particular set of values. Goodheart makes his case by analyzing the work of avariety of novelists, poets, and critics, nineteenth century and contemporary. he blends literary theory and practical criticism.

See also: art criticism - Modernism

2006, June 07; 19:05 ::: The Modern Satiric Grotesque: And Its Traditions (1991) - John R. Clark

In search of the grotesque

The Modern Satiric Grotesque: And Its Traditions (1991) - John R. Clark [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Statistically Improbable Phrases (SIPs): (learn more)
satiric grotesque, modern grotesque, literary disruptions, performing self

Capitalized Phrases (CAPs): (learn more)
Evelyn Waugh, Kurt Vonnegut, Don Quixote, Donald Barthelme, John Barth, Big Mama, Jonathan Swift, Norman Mailer, Samuel Beckett, Alexander Pope, Giles Goat-Boy, Henry James, Cat's Cradle, Humbert Humbert, James Thurber, Mark Twain, Martinus Scriblerus, Middle Ages, One Hundred Years of Solitude, Snow White, Stanislaw Lem, Thomas Mann, Woody Allen, Animal Farm, Cide Hamete Benengeli

See also: grotesque - Modernism

2006, June 07; 19:05 ::: Nazi Psychoanalysis, Volume I: Only Psychoanalysis Won the War (2002) - Laurence A. Rickels

In search of Janine Chasseguet-Smirgel

Nazi Psychoanalysis, Volume I: Only Psychoanalysis Won the War (2002) - Laurence A. Rickels [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Psychoanalysis was a symptom of everything the Nazis reviled: an intellectual assault on Kultur largely perpetrated by Jews. It was also, as this remarkable revisionary work shows, an inescapable symptom of modernity, practiced, transformed, and perpetuated by and within the Nazi regime. A sweeping, magisterial work by one of the most incisive and interesting scholars of modern philosophy, theory, and culture, Nazi Psychoanalysis studies the breadth of this phenomenon in order to clarify and deepen our understanding not only of psychoanalysis but of the twentieth century itself.

Tracing the intersections of psychoanalysis and Nazism, Laurence A. Rickels discovers startling conjunctions and continuities in writers as diverse as Adler and Adorno, Kafka and Goethe, Lacan, H. Rider Haggard, and Heidegger, and in works as different as Der Golem, Civilization and Its Discontents, Frankenstein, Faust, and Brave New World. In a richly allusive style, he writes of psychoanalysis in multifarious incarnations, of the concept and actual history of "insurance," of propaganda in theory and practice, of psychological warfare, Walt Disney, and the Frankfurt School debates-a dizzying tour of the twentieth century that helps us see how the "corridor wars" that arise in the course of theoretical, clinical, social, political, and cultural attempts to describe the human psyche are related to the world wars of the century in an intimate and infinitely complicated manner.

Though some have used its appropriation by the Nazis to brand psychoanalysis with the political odium of fascism, Rickels instead finds an uncanny convergence-one that suggests far-reaching possibilities for both psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic criticism. His work, with its enormous intellectual and historical span, makes a persuasive argument that no element of modernity-not psychoanalysis any more than Marxism or deconstruction, cultural revolutions or technological advances-can be adequately understood without a thorough consideration of its Nazi component.

Laurence A. Rickels is professor of German and comparative literature at the University of California at Santa Barbara. His books include The Vampire Lectures (1999), The Case of California (2001), and the edited volume Acting Out in Groups (1999), all published by Minnesota.

See also: psychoanalysis - nazism

2006, June 07; 19:05 ::: Hemingway's Fetishism: Psychoanalysis and the Mirror of Manhood (1998) - Carl Eby

Nevertheless, I should note that the French psychoanalyst Janine Chasseguet-Smirgel has argued that a regressive anality is central to perversions. --page 281

Hemingway's Fetishism: Psychoanalysis and the Mirror of Manhood (1998) - Carl Eby [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Critics have long acknowledged Hemingway's lifelong erotic obsession with hair, but this book is the first to explain in a theoretically coherent manner why Hemingway was a fetishist and why we should care. Without reducing Hemingway's art to his psychosexuality, Eby demonstrates that when the fetish appears in Hemingway's fiction, it always does so with a retinue of attendant fantasies, themes, and symbols that are among the most prominent and important in Hemingway's work.

"Eby stands out as a particularly fine writer who has brought unfamiliar Hemingway materials together in creative conjunctions to illuminate the classic works. His critical savvy and sense of humor are very refreshing.

See also: psychoanalysis - fetishism - American literature

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