Author: Jessica Castro-Rappl

Militarism and Capitalism

coverimageMilitarism and Capitalism: The Work and Wages of Violence,” the latest issue of Radical History Review, edited by Simeon Man, A. Naomi Paik, and Melina Pappademos, is out now.

This special issue examines the historical intersections of militarism and capitalism, investigating the co-constitutions of military infrastructure, logistics, labor, and violence with capital’s emergence and ever-expanding need for growth.

Contributors study the emergence of private military corporations and their collusions with imperial military states; the relationship between transactional sex and black-market economies for US military goods during the Korean War; past struggles of the Kanaka Maoli as a guide for present-day efforts to demilitarize and decolonize Hawai‘i; and much more.

Read the introduction to “Militarism and Capitalism,” freely available, and browse the table of contents.

The End of Area

The newest special issue of positions: asia critique, “The End of Area: Biopolitics, Geopolitics, History,” edited by Gavin Walker and Naoki Sakai, is now available.

pos_27_1_coverAs the two universal forms of capitalism—the commodity and the nation-state—expand globally, and as technological innovation and cultural exchange challenge borders and national identities, traditional ideas of what constitutes “area” and “area studies” have become increasingly irrelevant. Yet despite critiques, area studies persists today, even as history renders it more and more obsolete.

Contributors to “The End of Area” explore what area studies can do when its object, “area,” detaches from the realm of geopolitics and enters also into the realm of biopolitics. This issue centers translation and the biopolitical as new theoretical mechanisms for area studies to order, combine, separate, and classify life.

Read the introduction, freely available, and browse the table of contents.

Decline of the Republic

saq_118_1_coverThe most recent issue of the South Atlantic Quarterly, “Decline of the Republic: Vicissitudes of the Emerging Regime in Turkey,” edited by Ceren Özselçuk and Bülent Küçük, is available now.

“It is as if the rhythm of life in Turkey has sped up, like in time-lapse photography,” the editors write in their opening essay, made freely available. “The extraordinary series of events that have taken place within the last five years include bomb attacks, massacres, mass work accidents, wars and occupations, the Gezi Uprising and other large protests, corruption scandals, mass and targeted imprisonments, the coup attempt, purges, confiscation of institutional, corporate and individual properties, and finally the change from a parliamentary to a presidential regime.”

“What does the cumulative effect of these daily experiences of dislocation tell us about the nature of the social transformation that is taking place at the moment?” they write. “What the Turkish republic is ultimately grounded on is a persistent denial to encounter its constitutive ‘fault lines’ that shape its modern history.”

Contributors study the failed peace process between the Turkish State and the Kurdish movement, develop alternate frameworks for understanding Turkish authoritarianism, explore the restructuring of academia in Turkey and alternative spaces of education, and expose the limits of Erdoğan’s vision of “corporate sovereignty,” among other topics.

The issue also includes an “Against the Day” section entirely authored by students and academic staff involved in the #MustFall South African student movement calling for the decolonization of higher education. Contributors consider the matter of political time, from the use of the historically volatile term decolonization and the retrieval of political traditions from the 1960s to the stretching of time in occupations and campus shutdowns.

Browse the table of contents for “Decline of the Republic” and read the opening essay, freely available.

Speaking from the Heartland

pads103_coverSpeaking from the Heartland” by Christopher Strelluf, the newest Publication of the American Dialect Society, is now available.

Drawing on acoustic measurements of more than 140,000 vowels recorded during interviews with 50 English speakers from Kansas City, Strelluf rigorously examines the vowel systems of those living in this large metropolitan area and traces a half-century of sound change from 1955 to 1999.

The results reveal a series of recent innovations that challenge Kansas City’s characterization as a Midland dialect city—or more broadly challenge the characterization of the Midland dialect. By examining these features in Kansas City, this volume updates knowledge about one speech community as well as contributing broadly to studies in the phonetics and phonology of American Englishes.

Read the first chapter, made freely available.

25% Off to Celebrate 25 Years of GLQ

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Join us in celebrating the 25th anniversary of GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies by taking advantage of a special discount on subscriptions and memberships!

Through the end of January, use coupon code GLQ25 to take 25% off an individual subscription to GLQ or an individual membership in the GL/Q Caucus for the Modern Languages. A Caucus membership includes a one-year subscription to GLQ. Subscribers and members receive print copies of the current volume and online access to the journal’s full archive.

Subscribe now or join the GL/Q Caucus.

glq_25_1_coverWhen you subscribe, you’ll receive the first issue of the current volume, “GLQ at 25,” which commemorates the journal’s impact on the field of queer theory. Contributors reconsider key works from the journal that have resonated in their moment and beyond. The issue includes an extensive forum with thirty-five contributions, including a special section on Cathy Cohen’s landmark 1997 article “Punks, Bulldaggers, and Welfare Queens” and revisitings of works by scholars such as Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, Susan Stryker, and José Esteban Muñoz. Browse the table of contents and read the introduction, freely available.

Call for Papers: Prism

artboard 1Prism: Theory and Modern Chinese Literature, edited by Zong-qi Cai and Yunte Huang, seeks contributions for the following upcoming themed issues:

  • “On Method,” edited by Carlos Rojas
  • “Theory and Chinese Literary Studies,” edited by Zong-qi Cai
  • “Sinophone/Xenophone Studies and Chinese Literature,” edited by David Der-wei Wang
  • “New Media and Chinese Literature,” edited by Yunte Huang

Prism presents cutting-edge research on modern literary production, dissemination, and reception in China and beyond. It also publishes works that study the shaping influence of traditional literature and culture on modern and contemporary China. Prism actively promotes scholarly investigations from interdisciplinary and cross-cultural perspectives, and it encourages integration of theoretical inquiry with empirical research. The journal strives to foster in-depth dialogues between Western and Chinese literary theories that illuminate both the unique features of each interlocutor and their shared insights into issues of universal interest. Prism is a new incarnation of the Journal of Modern Literature in Chinese (JMLC), founded in 1987 by the Centre for Humanities Research of Lingnan University of Hong Kong.

For submission guidelines and more information about the journal, please visit Prism’s website.

2019 Modern Language Association Highlights and Awards

This year’s meeting of the Modern Language Association was absolutely packed with awards, receptions, and events—and, like always, we had a wonderful time meeting authors, editors, and attendees and selling our books and journals.

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Congratulations to Melanie Yergeau, whose book Authoring Autism won the MLA Prize for a First Book, and Fred Moten, whose book Black and Blur won the William Sanders Scarborough Prize!

Several of our journals and books also received awards from the Council of Editors of Learned Journals (CELJ) and from the GL/Q Caucus for the Modern Languages:

CELJ Awards

Archives of Asian Art, the Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, and American Literature each received a CELJ award this year—congratulations to these journals!

coverimageThis year’s Best Journal Design Award was given to Archives of Asian Art. Upon joining Duke University Press in 2017, the journal was redesigned by Sue Hall, our now-retired journals designer of 23 years. The 2018 Association of University Presses Book, Jacket, and Journal Show also recognized the journal’s redesign: “The new design stands out because of the luxurious and well-placed illustrations and because it combines an elegant, versatile page design with fine-grained typographic sophistication,” wrote eminent typographer Robert Bringhurst.

The CELJ also recognized two of our journal issues with the Best Special Issue Award: “Queer about Comics,” an issue of American Literature (volume 90, issue 2) edited by Darieck Scott and Ramzi Fawaz; and “The Bible and English Readers,” an issue of the Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (volume 47, issue 3) edited by Thomas Fulton.

GL/Q Caucus Celebration and Awards

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Marcia Ochoa and Jennifer DeVere Brody with the 25th-anniversary issue of GLQ

This year, the GL/Q Caucus celebrated the 25th anniversary of GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies with a panel on the journal and a reception. The caucus also awarded prizes to several outstanding books and journal articles:

The Crompton-Noll Award was given to Mary Zaborskis for the article “Sexual Orphanings,” published in GLQ (volume 22, issue 4), and Margaret Galvan for the article “‘The Lesbian Norman Rockwell’: Alison Bechdel and Queer Grassroots Networks,” published in American Literature (volume 90, issue 2).

The Alan Bray Book Award was granted to Jasbir Puar, author of The Right to Maim, and Ariane Cruz, author of The Color of Kink (NYU Press). Kadji Amin, author of Disturbing Attachments, received honorable mention, as did Tourmaline, Eric A. Stanley, and Johanna Burton, editors of Trap Door (New Museum and MIT Press).

Eric A. Stanley and Andrew Spieldenner received the Michael Lynch Award for Service, which, in Eve Sedgwick’s words, serves “to publicize and celebrate—and as widely as possible—the range, the forms, the energy, and the history of queer activism by academics.”

Other Highlights

We enjoyed celebrating several new journals with a wine reception Friday afternoon: Critical TimesEnglish Language Notes, Journal of Korean StudiesMeridiansPrism, and Qui Parle.

It was also wonderful to see several of our authors who stopped by the booth:

Thank you to all who came by to see us! For those of you who weren’t able to make it out to MLA, or who didn’t have enough room in your suitcase to pack all the books you wanted, don’t worry—you can still take advantage of the conference discount by using coupon code MLA19 at dukeupress.edu through the end of February.

Top Blog Posts of 2018

Before we ring in the new year, we’re taking a look back at some of our most viewed blog posts of 2018. Thank you for reading, and we look forward to sharing more news, ideas, and scholarship with you in 2019!

8. New Article Looks at the Rise and Fall of Medicare’s Independent Payment Advisory Board

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“‘Technocratic Dreams, Political Realities: The Rise and Demise of Medicare’s Independent Payment Advisory Board,’ an article by Jonathan Oberlander and Steven B. Spivack in the Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law (volume 43, issue 3), offers a groundbreaking, in-depth look at the troubled history of the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), enacted as part of the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and repealed in February 2018 when President Donald Trump signed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018.”

7. The Labor Beat

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“The most recent issue of Labor, ‘The Labor Beat,’ edited by Max Fraser and Christopher Phelps, is now available.

This issue considers the transformation of labor journalists’ working conditions across time, from the days of the small printer-publisher to the mid-century newspaper conglomerate and today’s cable-news, Internet-propelled 24-hour environment.  Even journalists brimming with the best of intentions do not write news under conditions of their own choosing, given the power of publishers, editors, and advertisers. That makes it all the more impressive that so many have covered the labor beat with alacrity, including those profiled in this issue: John Swinton and Joseph Buchanan in the nineteenth century; Heywood Broun, Benjamin Stolberg, Trezzvant Anderson, and Barbara Ehrenreich in the twentieth; and Steven Greenhouse, Jane Slaughter, and Sarah Jaffe today.”

6. End of an Era at The Regulator Bookshop

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“Local heroes Tom Campbell and John Valentine, who have carried the torch for independent bookselling in Durham for the past 40 years, are retiring today, March 1, and turning The Regulator Bookshop over to new owners.

Founded in 1976, The Regulator has been a vital part of Durham’s cultural life, hosting events for too many Duke University Press authors for us to count. Just in the past couple of years, John and Tom have provided a platform for Charles Cobb, Alexis Gumbs, Ambassador James Joseph, Howard Covington, Brad Weiss, Orrin Pilkey, and many others. Tom and John let us turn their downstairs into a pop-up university press bookshop for University Press Week. They have served as sounding-boards for our ideas and given us insight into the community of booksellers.”

5. Palestine Beyond National Frames: Emerging Politics, Cultures, and Claims

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“The most recent issue of South Atlantic Quarterly, ‘Palestine beyond National Frames: Emerging Politics, Cultures, and Claims,’ edited by Sophie Richter-Devroe and Ruba Salih, is now available.

The ‘national’ has functioned as the affective and symbolic frame for the political project of liberation for Palestinians and has also been the underlying grid of most of the scholarly work on Palestine. This issue goes beyond those national frames to disclose a different dimension of the Palestinian politics of liberation. It sheds light on an indigenous population engaged in ongoing and everyday collective resistance to protect their ‘home’ and defend their ‘land’—as these are constantly reconfigured and imagined across place and time—rather than a memorialized homeland or national territory.”

4. Top Ten Most Read Articles from JMEWS

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“We’re excited to celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8, as well as Women’s History Month, by spotlighting the Journal of Middle East Women’s Studies (JMEWSthroughout March. JMEWS is the official journal of the Association for Middle East Women’s Studies. This interdisciplinary journal advances the fields of Middle East gender, sexuality, and women’s studies through the contributions of academics, artists, and activists from around the globe working in the interpretive social sciences and humanities.”

3. Narrative Theory and the History of the Novel

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“The most recent special issue of Poetics Today, ‘Narrative Theory and the History of the Novel,’ edited by Paul Dawson, is now available.

What is a novel, how did the genre emerge, and how has it changed throughout history? This special issue addresses these perennial questions by bringing the formalist approach of narrative theory into dialogue with the historical approach of novel studies. It identifies and interrogates the convergences between current scholarship in both fields in order to shed new light on English, French, Danish and American fiction from the seventeenth century to the present.”

2. Q&A with Martin Duberman, Author of The Rest of It

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Photo by Alan Barnett

“Martin Duberman is Distinguished Professor of History, Emeritus, at City University of New York, where he founded and directed the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies. He is the author of numerous award-winning histories, biographies, memoirs, essays, plays, and novels, which include Cures: A Gay Man’s OdysseyPaul RobesonStonewallMidlife Queer: Autobiography of a Decade, 1971–1981Black Mountain: An Exploration in CommunityThe Worlds of Lincoln KirsteinJews/Queers/Germans; and more than a dozen others. His latest book, The Rest of It: Hustlers, Cocaine, Depression, and Then Some, 1976–1988, is the untold and revealing story of how he managed to survive and be productive during a difficult twelve-year period in which he was beset by drug addiction, health problems, and personal loss.”

1. The Trouble with White Women

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“Today’s guest blog post is written by Kyla Schuller, author of the new book The Biopolitics of Feeling: Race, Sex, and Science in the Nineteenth Century.

Broad swaths of the left and liberal-leaning U.S. public newly dedicated themselves to political activity in the wake of Trump’s ascension to the White House and the GOP’s control of the Senate and the House. Amidst the awakening of a liberal grassroots, a new enemy crystallized: the white woman voter. She emerged as the victim of a kind of false consciousness forged not in the factory, but in the college classroom and suburban mall. In dominant media narratives, her ubiquity came as a shock. The stats are repeated as incantation: 53% of white women voted for Trump a mere four weeks after video emerged of Trump bragging about sexual assault. 63% of white women voted for Roy Moore in December’s Alabama Senate special election, despite mounds of credible evidence of Moore’s molestation of young teen girls. Why, the narrative muses, would white women betray their own interests? And why are black women—98% of whom voted for Moore’s opponent Doug Jones—seemingly immune to electoral self-sabotage?”

2018 Foerster Prize Winner Announced

ddaml_90_3_coverWe’re pleased to announce the winner of the 2018 Norman Foerster Prize, awarded to the best essay of the year in American Literature: “The Race of Machines: Blackness and Prosthetics in Early American Science Fiction” by Taylor Evans, published in volume 90, issue 3. Read the essay, freely available through the end of March, here.

The prize committee commented:

“Taylor Evans’s essay reveals an important—but previously unacknowledged—facet of the history and development of science fiction. To reveal the racialized nature of the figure of the ‘steam man,’ Evans draws parallels between the visual rhetoric of black caricatures (particularly minstrel tropes) and the development of the iconography of the ‘steam man.’ In so doing, Evans provides an important intervention in our understanding of the history of science fiction while broadening our understanding of the insidious means by which all facets of American popular culture are infected by racism. In addition to its contributions to the study of race, narrative, and popular culture, this essay should serve as a model for scholars looking to reveal the (seemingly) hidden cultural dimensions of fictional narratives, and particularly those that (like science fiction) are too easily dismissed as apolitical.”

Margaret Galvan’s “‘The Lesbian Norman Rockwell’: Alison Bechdel and Queer Grassroots Networks,” published in volume 90, issue 2, is the runner-up for the prize. The essay is freely available through the end of March. The committee remarked:

“Margaret Galvan’s essay engages in detailed archival research in order to demonstrate the impact of the large and vibrant queer community on the work of Alison Bechdel, one of the most celebrated comix artists of her generation. Focusing on Bechdel’s influential early series—work that was often published and distributed among grass-roots periodicals, and which has not received the scholarly attention given to her later work—Galvan identifies the various local, regional, and national influences that Bechdel drew from for her series. As such, the identification of Bechdel as ‘the lesbian Norman Rockwell’ is made to suggest not only her importance to the history of comix, but also to connect her to a heretofore unrecognized ‘folk’ community that engaged in vibrant and cooperative networks of support and influence. In addition to its contributions to our understanding of an important author in the contemporary canon, this essay should serve as a reminder of the importance of archival research for understanding the larger contexts of literary works, their influences, and their reception.”

Congratulations to Taylor Evans and Margaret Galvan for these exceptional essays!

African Feminisms

coverimageThe most recent special issue of Meridians, “African Feminisms: Cartographies for the Twenty-First Century,” edited by Alicia C. Decker and Gabeba Baderoon, is now available.

Read the full issue, freely available until March 5.

As the contributors to this issue show, African feminisms not only vary widely in form but also maintain vibrant and sometimes tense relations with one another around topics such as sexuality, national policies, and transnational solidarity. Such diversity and tensions, far from presenting a disadvantage, spur innovative and politically radical approaches in the field. The multiplicity of feminisms theorized in this issue help challenge patriarchal ideologies and structures both in Africa and beyond. “African Feminisms” includes poetry, memoir, interview, testimonio, and more, alongside essays on topics such as the framing of Nigerian girls as victims in need of saving, feminisms in African hip-hop, and sex worker advocacy groups in Africa.

Also check out these recent recent related titles:

An Intimate RebukeIn An Intimate Rebuke, an ethnography of female empowerment, Laura S. Grillo offers new perspectives on how elder West African women deploy an ancient ritual in which they dance naked and slap their genitals and bare breasts to protest abuses of state power, globalization, witchcraft, rape, and other social dangers.

In Rwandan Women Rising, Ambassador Swanee Hunt shares the stories of over ninety women, who in the wake of the 1994 Rwandan genocide, overcame unfathomable brutality, suffering, loss, and seemingly unending challenges to rebuild Rwandan society by addressing common problems ranging from health care, rape, and housing to poverty, education, and mental health.

Hershini Bhana Young engages with the archive of South African and black diasporic performance in Illegible Will to examine the absence of black women’s will from that archive, showing that alternative critical imaginings juxtaposed against traditional historical research can help to locate where agency and will may reside.