"The ‘possessive spectator’ [Laura Mulvey] describes is a fetishist who ‘wounds the film object in the process of love and fascination’ but also ‘reinvent(s) its relations of desire and discovery’ (p. 178). This is a ‘penetration’ and even an ‘emasculation’ of the film, producing ‘a fragmented, even feminized, aesthetic of cinema’ (pp. 179–80)." (Mary Ann Doane)
Written in 1992, the Nervous System is an insightful anthropological work comprised of nine essays. Michael Taussig sets out on a journey to explore and describe various forces that shape and mold our present society. He tries to explore the process through which we commodify the state and in that way transfer the power to it.
What do the knotted feeling in the gut, the constriction in the throat, vomit, and feces have to do with the orderly syntax of knowledge and truth? What do such visceral phenomena have
to do with the flows of social power that are regimented by this syntax? How are we to think about those decisive moments of physical and affective communication that precede and exceed interpretation, the sensation that comes before and goes beyond logic but is somehow logic’s operative basis, its sine qua non? Sensation, which provides myriad points of intrusion and
Situating itself at the interface between critical theory and cultural studies, this article addresses the theoretical problem of the relationship between mimicry and mimesis, two terms which are often seen as being virtually interchangeable but which may, as I shall argue here, have different cultural functions.
"My self and my own" is Etienne Balibar’s exploration of the conceptions of "my self" and "my own" in John Locke’s "Essay on Human Understanding". In a review for "Political Theory" Chris Pierson writes: "In a brilliant essay that ranges effortlessly over the poetry of Robert Browning, the Confessionsof St. Augustine, and The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Balibar identifies and explores an ambiguity in Locke’s conception of my self and my own."
Balibar begins his text as follows: "I cannot say if the expression “possessive individualism” was invented by MacPherson in his 1962 book, The Political Theory of Possessive Individualism, or if he took it from another source. What is sure, however, is that from that moment onwards it became an extraordinarily successful instrument of historical analysis and ethical judgment which largely escaped the original intentions of the author.
Guest not confirmed
Presentation: Florian Schneider