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  • The last eight years have been the hottest in recorded human history. From atmospheric carbon concentration and ocean acidification to increased frequency of extreme weather events and, yes, pandemics, it is not only that every measure of climate change has become more pronounced but that the intensity of this already existing socioecological phenomenon is ever more palpable to the vast majority of people across the world. Climate has moved from a so-called “special interest” to an everyday concern—with the mainstream, cautious IPCC calling for nothing less than unprecedented, radical socio-economic transformation. ...
  • Ida Bauer, memorialized by Sigmund Freud as “Dora” in his “Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria,” is a striking figure—both at the origin of psychoanalysis and for feminist theorists. For Freud, Dora represented a “failure,” of his therapeutic method as much as his analytic observations. He proved not only unable to alleviate her “hysterical symptoms”—a nervous cough, loss of voice, and depression; but he also failed to account for her attraction to her father’s mistress. The case would haunt Freud in the years following his first fragments of an analysis ...
  • The idiosyncratic Marxist philosopher and cultural critic Ernst Bloch is perhaps best known for his attempt to rehabilitate the concept of utopia within Marxist thought. But utopia, he wrote, “is not something like nonsense or absolute fancy; rather it is not yet in the sense of possibility.” Across a wide-ranging and poetic body of work, Bloch elaborated a vision of concrete utopia, grounded not only in hope for and anticipation of a non-alienated future, but also the channeling of that hope into the collective transformation of material conditions ...
  • Capitalism cannot be understood except as a global system. Such is the guiding insight propelling the work of Immanuel Wallerstein, whose World-Systems Analysis provides a grand theoretical account of the origins, evolution, and eventual dominance of a system whose basic characteristics are fundamentally global—its intercontinental arrangement into wealthy “cores,” liminal “semi-peripheries,” and colonial and postcolonial “peripheries.” For Wallerstein, the World System is predicated on a world-wide division of labor: core nations specialize in high-skill, capital intensive work, peripheral countries in low-skill labor and resource extraction—weaving a global circuit of exchange that tends to enrich the core nations ...
  • Elfriede Jelinek’s body of work—awarded the Nobel Prize in literature in 2004, to great controversy—has been alternately characterized as moral satire, Marxist-feminist fable, a Barthesian weaponization of myth against itself, and “whining, unenjoyable public pornography.” More suggestively, her prose and performance texts may be read as instantiating the terms of Fredric Jameson’s projected “new realism”: the reconstitution of a social totality in which relations of exploitation and domination are revealed for what they are—moments of class struggle. ...

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Recent Posts

Faculty Writing: On Being Sick and Tired, and Lula’s Third Presidential Term

A sneak peek of Ajay Singh Chaudhary’s new book is available now in the latest issue of The Baffler, in which he discusses what it means, socially and politically, to be “sick and tired” in a crisis-ridden world. Therewithin, he charts the growing reverence for “resilience”—in nodes of knowledge production from academia to government reports […]

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