Blog Archive - Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

Tzeitung (Blog)

Faculty Lightning Lectures: Third Annual Institute Social

At our Third Annual Institute Social, BISR staff, faculty, alumni, and friends gathered at Verso Books for a celebratory evening of food, drink, conversation, and, as are given yearly, faculty Lightning Lectures. This year’s talks included: Alyssa Battistoni on the maintenance art of Mierle Laderman Ukeles and its connections to, and tensions with, the work […]

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BISR Faculty Writing: Organizing Academics, Socialism and the State, and the Labor of Reproduction.

In n+1, Alyssa Battistoni recalls her experiences organizing a graduate student union at Yale, focusing particularly on the interplay between community organizing and cultural hegemony. Writes Battistoni, “there is no economic deus ex machina that will bring the revolution. There are still people, in their stubborn, contradictory particularities, as they exist in concrete space and […]

BISR Faculty Writing: Jeff Koons, Alexa and Housework, and Interviewing Donna Haraway

In Anachronism and Antiquity, Mathura Umachandran dissects antiquity as theme and tool within the artwork of Jeff Koons, the artist whom “the art world loves to hate.” Writes Umachandran, “Koons deals with the concept of aesthetic originality through the extreme practice of reproduction. He is deeply invested in the copy: for example, the painting of […]

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 […]

BISR Faculty Writing: Iranian Women, the Politics of Exhaustion, and Liberalism’s Illiberal Turn

In Forbes, Kristin Soraya Batmanghelichi reflects on the Iranian women’s movement 40 years after the Iranian Revolution. Despite “the standard Western narrative” of total acquiescence to theocratic authority, Iranian women continue to “struggle against gender discrimination, whether in law or in social mores,” and participate in public life, “from the labor force, which is about 19 […]

Faculty Video: Night of Philosphy & Ideas 2019

For the third consecutive year, BISR faculty participated in the annual Night of Philosophy & Ideas, an all-night marathon of philosophical debate, performances, screenings, readings, and music co-presented by the Brooklyn Public Library and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy. As we did last year, we recorded our faculty contributions–Suzanne Schneider on “Terrorism, Nihilism, and the […]

Faculty Writing: the Vice of Nationalism and Self-tracking and Surveillance

In Foreign Policy, Suzanne Schneider dissects Yoram Hazony’s tract The Virtues of Nationalism, an ironically “deeply global” book that “underscores the common underpinnings of the Israeli right, the Trump administration, ethnonationalists, and indeed neofascists the world over.” Hazony’s ahistorical book, which simply bypasses with nothing more than a footnote the serious scholarship of Benedict Anderson and […]

Faculty Writing: Digital Islam, the Urban “Unbuilder,” and Plots of Paradise

In the Revealer, Suzanne Schneider writes about “Digital Islam” and the phenomenon of the “YouTube Sheik”—in particular, Dawah Man, an online evangelist whose very lack of formal religious training gives him grounds to pontificate from “simple, straightforward” religious text. At first glance a kind of democratization of religious knowledge, the YouTube pulpit in fact enables […]

Faculty Interview: Alyssa Battistoni on Ecofeminism and Xenofeminism

In the West, since at least the myth of Gaea, the earth has been seen as something feminine. For ecofeminists, the linkage has had profound, and malign, consequences for our treatment both of nature and of women. More recently, xenofeminists have reconsidered the liberatory possibilities of instrumental technology: whereas for some ecofeminists nature is inviolable, […]

Faculty Writing: the Supreme Court, Anthropocene Politics, and Poetry in Parentheses

In the wake of Kavanaugh’s confirmation, Ajay Singh Chaudhary published a piece in Public Seminar critiquing the anti-democratic character of the Supreme Court, one of four constitutional “veto players” that make the U.S. “institutionally the least democratic among nominally democratic countries in the OECD world.” In N+1, responding to a Trump administration memo predicting a […]