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Journal Cover Theory, Culture & Society
  [SJR: 1.954]   [H-I: 52]   [71 followers]  Follow
   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
   ISSN (Print) 0263-2764 - ISSN (Online) 1460-3616
   Published by Sage Publications Homepage  [835 journals]
  • Anthropogenesis: Origins and Endings in the Anthropocene
    • Authors: Yusoff; K.
      Pages: 3 - 28
      Abstract: If the Anthropocene represents a new epoch of thought, it also represents a new form of materiality and historicity for the human as strata and stratigrapher of the geologic record. This collision of human and inhuman histories in the strata is a new formation of subjectivity within a geologic horizon that redefines temporal, material, and spatial orders of the human (and thus nature). I argue that the Anthropocene contains within it a form of Anthropogenesis – a new origin story and ontics for man – that radically rewrites material modes of differentiation and concepts of life, from predominantly biopolitical notions of life toward an understanding of life’s geophysical origination (geontics). Here, I use the term Anthropogenesis to suggest that two things explicitly happen in the nomination of the Anthropocene: 1) the production of a mythic Anthropos as geologic world-maker/destroyer of worlds, and 2) a material, evolutionary narrative that re-imagines human origins and endings within a geologic rather than an exclusively biological context. In contrast to the homogeneous geomorphizing of the Anthropocene, I suggest that socializing the strata needs a more nuanced notion of ‘geologic life’ that challenges the construction of the Anthropocene as an undifferentiated social stratification.
      PubDate: 2016-01-28T23:10:13-08:00
      DOI: 10.1177/0263276415581021
      Issue No: Vol. 33, No. 2 (2016)
  • Authentic Crows: Identity, Captivity and Emergent Forms of Life
    • Authors: van Dooren; T.
      Pages: 29 - 52
      Abstract: For over a decade the Hawaiian crow (Corvus hawaiiensis), or ‘alalā, has been extinct in the wild, the only remaining birds living their lives in captivity. As the time for possible release approaches, questions of species identity – in particular focused on how birds have been changed by captivity – have become increasingly pressing. This article explores how identity is imagined and managed in this programme to produce ‘authentic’ crows. In particular, it asks what possibilities might be opened up by a move beyond relatively static notions of how these birds ought to be, towards more performative understandings of species identity. This shift in focus prompts us to ask how we might take up the task of learning to be part of these birds’ own experiments in emergent forms of ‘crow-ness’, so that we might begin to craft vital new forms of ‘polite’ conservation in this era of incredible biodiversity loss.
      PubDate: 2016-01-28T23:10:13-08:00
      DOI: 10.1177/0263276415571941
      Issue No: Vol. 33, No. 2 (2016)
  • Roberto Espositos 'Affirmative Biopolitics and the Gift
    • Authors: Tierney; T. F.
      Pages: 53 - 76
      Abstract: This article develops the affirmative biopolitics that Roberto Esposito intimates in his trilogy – Communitas, Immunitas and Bíos. The key to this affirmative biopolitics lies in the relationship between the munus, a form of gift that is the root of communitas and immunitas, and the gift discourse that developed throughout the 20th century. The article expands upon Esposito’s interpretation of four theoretical sources that are crucial to his biopolitical perspective: Mauss and the gift-exchange tradition; Hobbes’s social contract theory, which Esposito presents as the anti-gift that founded modernity’s thanatopolitical ‘immunization paradigm’; Bataille’s dangerous concept of sacrifice, which gestures toward an affirmative biopolitical community; and, finally, Jean-Luc Nancy’s essay, L’Intrus, which reflects on the near-decade Nancy lived as the recipient of the gift of a transplanted heart. This discussion of Mauss, Hobbes and Bataille is used to further develop Esposito’s interpretation of L’Intrus in a manner that supports his conception of an affirmative biopolitics ‘of, not over, life’.
      PubDate: 2016-01-28T23:10:13-08:00
      DOI: 10.1177/0263276414561096
      Issue No: Vol. 33, No. 2 (2016)
  • Islamophobia, Feminism and the Politics of Critique
    • Authors: Terman; R.
      Pages: 77 - 102
      Abstract: This article discusses recent critical works within the frame of what is considered a paramount concern in feminist scholarship today: How do we name and publicize acts of violence against women without providing ideological fuel for orientalism and Islamophobia? By privileging a critique of western imperialism in discussions of violence against women in Muslim contexts, I argue this work: 1) obscures a complete understanding of violence against women in Muslim contexts, 2) is unjustifiably dismissive and belittling to activists working in the Muslim world, and 3) is an expression of a Euro/American experience of Islamophobia post 9/11 that is projected in an ahistorical and politically counterproductive way onto local Muslim and Arab communities. The cumulative result is a teleology of an anti-imperialism that naturalizes the double bind between Islamophobia and gender injustice by presenting women’s rights activism not just as complicit in imperialism and Islamophobia but as inescapably imperialist and Islamophobic.
      PubDate: 2016-01-28T23:10:13-08:00
      DOI: 10.1177/0263276415590236
      Issue No: Vol. 33, No. 2 (2016)
  • The Politics of Postsecular Feminism
    • Authors: Vasilaki; R.
      Pages: 103 - 123
      Abstract: This article critically engages the postsecular turn in feminism by focusing on recent contributions by Judith Butler, Rosi Braidotti, and Saba Mahmood, whose stance can be seen as symptomatic of the postsecular moment. The article demonstrates that their conjoint theoretical moves have unintended yet important implications, which are left unexamined. Whilst recognizing the importance of the effort of postsecular feminism to think of agency beyond the limitations of Eurocentric theorizing, the article argues that it remains unclear whether the particular conceptualization of agency, as detached from autonomy, can have counter-hegemonic effects. The article is concerned with the politics that the postsecular turn in feminism authorizes, and for this purpose it questions to what extent postsecular feminist theorizing risks the neutralization of critical social theory itself, because abandoning autonomy as the foundation of political subjectivity does not allow for the interrogation of arbitrary authorities and the social inequalities that they sustain.
      PubDate: 2016-01-28T23:10:13-08:00
      DOI: 10.1177/0263276415590235
      Issue No: Vol. 33, No. 2 (2016)
  • Cultural Branding, Geographic Source Indicators and Commodification
    • Authors: Hull; G.
      Pages: 125 - 145
      Abstract: One strategy for indigenous producers competing with global capital is to obtain geographic source protection (a form of trademark) for products traditionally associated with a cultural grouping or region. The strategy is controversial, and this article adds an additional reason to be cautious about adopting it. Specifically, consumers increasingly consume brands not for the products they designate but for the affiliation with the brands themselves. Since the benefits of source protection depend upon a consumer's desire to have a product actually from that source community, if consumers care more about the brand designation than the actual source, then those benefits will be more difficult to realize. In such an environment there would be tremendous pressure both to produce products that conform to (often exoticized) western images of cultures and to create property rights in the culture itself, empowering elites to further marginalize and suppress dissenting views.
      PubDate: 2016-01-28T23:10:14-08:00
      DOI: 10.1177/0263276415583140
      Issue No: Vol. 33, No. 2 (2016)
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