Blog Archive - Brooklyn Institute for Social Research

Tzeitung (Blog)

Faculty Video: Walter Benjamin’s The Storyteller

On October 7th, BISR faculty Christine Smallwood, Ajay Singh Chaudhary, Suzanne Schneider, novelist Hermione Hoby, and translator Tess Lewis gathered at the American Folk Art Museum to mark the republication, by NYRB, of Walter Benjamin’s landmark “The Storyteller” essay; and to discuss its meaning and enduring relevance—for modern politics, communication, literature, and sensibility. Questions pondered […]

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Faculty Chat: Puerto Rico: Rebellion and Beyond

With protestors continuing to demonstrate in Puerto Rico, even after the resignation of former governor Ricardo Rosseló, BISR faculty Adriana Garriga-Lopez (whose course Ambiente, Feminismo y Descolonización recently concluded in San Juan, Puerto Rico) sat down with fellow faculty member Ajay Singh Chaudhary to discuss the shape and scope of the mass protest movement. What […]

Faculty Writing: Capitalism and the Family, Immigration and “Merit,” and Torah as Palimpsest

On The Dig podcast with Daniel Denvir, Sophie Lewis discusses her new book Full Surrogacy Now: Feminism Against Family, the problem of commercialized surrogacy, and the abuses that follow from bourgeois notions of the family: “While we’re calling this situation that people are making a lot of noise about and feeling a lot of revulsion […]

Faculty Chat: Literature, Longing, and the Idea of Nature

In advance of her upcoming course Cold Pastoral: Literature, Nature, and the Anthropocene, Rebecca Ariel Porte sat down with fellow BISR faculty member Suzanne Schneider to record a faculty chat on pastoral literature, longing, our relation to nature, and the meaning of the pastoral in an age of climate change. How have humans, over time, […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]