Brooklyn Institute for Social Research -
  • From questionable stories of Roman emperors drowning their dinner guests in roses to the smoke-painted reveries of Baudelaire’s Flowers of Evil (1857), tropes of decadence—decay, decline, decomposition—have flourished in modern times. Why have new, powerful tropes of decadence become so central to forms of modern culture and politics?
  • Amid the buzz of media reports about burkas and honor killings, a general sense has emerged among many commentators in Western countries that Islam is uniquely hostile to women’s rights. For many Muslim feminists, this jaundiced view not only obscures the existence of lively—and substantive—debates surrounding Islam and feminism that began well over a century ago, but also fuels a particularly dangerous savior narrative in which Muslim women must be “rescued” from Muslim men, often through military intervention. How do the demands of feminism relate to those of Islam, and are these two commitments truly in conflict?
  • Is another world possible? How can we even begin to imagine one? Why do we increasingly dream in dystopian spectacle since the end of the 20th century? What roots does dystopian thinking have in its utopian forbearers?

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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Faculty Interview: Suzanne Schneider on the Modern Middle East

In advance of her course Empire, Nation-State, Caliphate: The Modern Middle East, we sat down with BISR core faculty and director of operations Suzanne Schneider to chat about her approach to studying  the history and politics of the Modern Middle East.   The title of this course, “Empire, Nation-State, Caliphate” gestures at some sort of transformation. […]

The Podcast for Social Research, Episode 19: Biopolitics in Bloomberg’s New York

Faculty Interview: Ajay Singh Chaudhary on Soviet Life and Politics