Brooklyn Institute for Social Research -
  • The Brooklyn Institute warmly invites you to our Third Annual Institute Social. Join us for an evening of delicious food, open bar (with cocktails!), lively conversation, lightning lectures by BISR faculty, and more. All proceeds help support the Brooklyn Institute’s core operations, including a new office space!, as well as our many public initiatives, including BISR Network, our series of Midwest learning centers; Community Initiative, which delivers free classes to low-income and underserved adults; and BISR Praxis, which provides educational materials and learning opportunities to activists and public-interest non-profits.
  • Is there an American way of philosophizing? However capitalist, consumerist, or entrepreneurial the United States is, the development of philosophical pragmatism seems a straightforward rebuke to de Tocqueville’s claim that “Americans have no philosophic school of their own … there is no country less interested in philosophy.” Yet, what kind of philosophy is pragmatism? What does it mean to judge a theory or proposition wholly by its practical effects? Does pragmatism offer justification for ignoring the abstract and speculative systems advanced across centuries of European philosophy? ...
  • Anthony Trollope’s 1873 novel The Way We Live Now is a vitriolic attack on “a certain class of dishonesty,” written, in the author’s words, with “the whip of the satirist.” It is a splenetic, splendid, and pessimistic account of financial speculation, fraud, fortunes won and lost, and engagements delayed and broken. Badly reviewed when it was published, it is now considered something like a masterpiece. In this course, we will read the entirety of "The Way We Live Now" alongside portions of Trollope’s Autobiography and critical texts. What sort of fraud can it be when “everyone knows” about it? What is the narrative structure of the open secret? ...
  • Emerging in the cultural-political turmoil of the 1990s, New Queer Cinema offered representations of gay and lesbian life that have often been described by a single word: defiant. According to film scholar, B. Ruby Rich, four elements converged to produce New Queer Cinema: AIDS, Reagan, camcorders, and cheap (New York City) rent. Equally important was the embracing of the term “queer” to signify a resistance to normative codes of gender and sexuality. How did a defiantly queer orientation challenge both the homophobia of mainstream cinema and the “homo-normative” imperatives of gay culture? ...

THE BROOKLYN INSTITUTE FOR SOCIAL RESEARCH is an interdisciplinary teaching and research institute that offers critical, community-based education in the humanities and social sciences. Working in partnership with local businesses and cultural organizations, we integrate rigorous but accessible scholarly study with the everyday lives of working adults and re-imagine scholarship for the 21st century.

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Recent Posts

BISR Faculty Writing: Politics after Amazon, Futurism, and a Culture of (Child) Sacrifice

In The Baffler, Ajay Singh Chaudhary relates the story of Amazon HQ2, whose rise and sudden fall is “a microcosm of twenty-first century capitalism and a parable about the changing nature of politics for the left. The stakes are nothing less than the habitability of a global human ecological niche, and the necessary flourishing of […]

The Podcast for Social Research, Episode 32: Another Odicy: On the Two-Hundredth Anniversary of Keats’ Odes of 1819

Call for Michigan Faculty: History, Political Economy, Urban Studies

The Podcast for Social Research, Episode 31: Night of Philosophy and Ideas 2019