Read to Respond: Labor

R2R final logoOur “Read to Respond” series addresses the current climate of misinformation by highlighting articles and books that encourage thoughtful, educated debate on today’s most pressing issues. This post focuses on labor, worker’s rights, and neoliberalism. Read, reflect, and share these resources in and out of the classroom to keep these important conversations going.

Labor

These articles are freely available until December 15, 2017. Follow along with the series over the next several months and share your thoughts with #ReadtoRespond.

New Books in July

Happy summer to you! July brings some great new books for you to enjoy. Check them out:

In Dust of the Zulu, LouiseMeintjes w border Meintjes traces the history and the political and aesthetic significance of ngoma, a competitive form of dance and music that emerged out of the legacies of colonialism and apartheid in South Africa, showing how it embodies Zulu masculinity and the expanse of South Africa’s violent history.

Nick Nesbitt’s collection The Concept in Crisis—which includes contributions from Alain Badiou, Étienne Balibar, Emily Apter, Warren Montag, and Bruno Bosteels—reconsiders the landmark 1965 work Reading Capital and renews its call for a symptomatic critique of capitalism and culture for the twenty-first century.

Garcia

David F. Garcia’s Listening for Africa examines the work of a wide range of musicians, dancers, academics, and activists between the 1930s and the 1950s to show how their belief in black music’s African roots would provide the means to debunk racist ideologies, aid decolonization of Africa, and ease racial violence.

James R. Barrett, in History from the Bottom Up and Inside Out, rethinks the boundaries of American working-class history by investigating the ways in which working-class people’s personal lives intersected with their activism and religious, racial, ethnic, and class identities.

Marso w border

In Politics with Beauvoir, Lori Marso treats Simone de Beauvoir’s feminist theory and practice as part of her political theory, arguing that freedom is Beauvoir’s central concern and that this is best apprehended through the notion of the encounter.

Originally published in 1937, C. L. R. James’s World Revolution is a pioneering Marxist analysis of the revolutionary history in the interwar period, the fundamental conflict between Trotsky and Stalin, and the ideological contestations within the Communist International and its role in the Soviet Union and international revolution. Published to commemorate the centenary of the Russian Revolution, this definitive edition of World Revolution features a new introduction by Christian Høgsbjerg and includes rare archival material, selected contemporary reviews, and extracts from James’s 1939 interview with Trotsky.

Price w border

Distinguished anthropologists Richard and Sally Price, in Saamaka Dreaming, look back at their first years living among the Saamaka maroons in Suriname in the late 1960s and retell the evolution of their personal lives and careers, relationships with the Saamaka, and the field of anthropology.

Never miss a new book! Sign up for Subject Matters, our e-mail newsletter, and get notifications of new titles in your preferred disciplines as well as discounts and other news.

 

 

 

 

Summer Vacation Reading Recommendations from our Staff

Our staff are voracious readers, including while they’re on vacation. There they can take a break from manuscripts and delve into something a little bit more fun. If you’re off to the beach or the mountains or somewhere in between on this coming long weekend, take time to stop off at a bookstore on your way and stock up on some of these recommended titles.

inthewoods_usJournals Marketing Manager, Jocelyn Dawson: Last year’s vacation reads recommendation from Elizabeth Ault, Assistant Editor, turned me on to the work of Tana French. She’s published six books to date—highly suspenseful psychological thrillers that are impossible to put down. But I can only recommend the first three (In the Woods, The Likeness, and Faithful Place)—I’m trying to spread the others out. The books are connected but not exactly sequential; still, I’d recommend starting from the beginning. Elizabeth’s recommendation has led to many enthralled reading hours for me and for at least three other people I’ve shared the books with.

joe ideSenior Managing Editor, Charles Brower: IQ, by Joe Ide. It’s a thriller about Isaiah Quintabe, a very appealing “underground” detective who’s equal parts Sherlock Holmes and Easy Rawlins; he’s trying to atone for some past mistakes by helping out his Long Beach neighbors, for whatever they can afford to pay him, even if it’s just a home-cooked meal. When he agrees to investigate a murder attempt on a paranoid rap star, he has to match wits with a hit man whose weapon of choice is a monstrous killer dog. It’s hair-raising and also very funny. Ide has another IQ novel coming out this fall, and I can’t wait to devour it!

drums of autumn.jpgBooks Publicity and Advertising Manager, Laura Sell: I’m a little late to the “Outlander” game, but if you like romance, history, time travel, and men in kilts, I can thoroughly recommend the series. The books are huge, over 700 pages, and totally immersive, which makes a perfect vacation book for me. I’ve been watching the TV series, too, but the books are much better. I’m taking Book 4, Drums of Autumn, which is set partly in colonial North Carolina, on my vacation to Maine this year and am looking forward to many pleasant hours on the porch with it.

game of thronesManaging Editor of the Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, Michael Cornett: George R. R. Martin, A Game of Thrones, vol. 1 of the series “A Song of Ice and Fire,” otherwise known as the “Game of Thrones” series. While many have enjoyed the popular television series, the novels are far far better. As an academic medievalist and a devout lover of Tolkien’s writing, I had serious doubts about reading this, figuring it would be pulpy fantasy fiction imitative of Tolkien (have you noticed the R. R. middle initials?). I gave it a try and I have become utterly absorbed. Martin’s beautifully written narrative is not at all like Tolkien’s mythological tale of good and evil. It is rather an imaginative blend of historical-psychological realism and medievalistic fantasy. The chapters are told from various characters’ points of view—half of them female characters, many of them children. Everyone is in peril as the world convulses from factional struggles for power, and the reader—who can too easily imagine every scene—turns the pages madly hoping for order to be established. An apocalyptic winter is coming, the characters brood, but summer is the perfect time to start into this rewarding series of novels.

Everything,_EverythingJournals Marketing Intern, Camille Wright: I recommend Nicola Yoon’s Everything, Everything. Through this novel, the readers are able to experience the world from fresh perspective. Maddy was diagnosed with SCID (Severe Combined Immunodeficiency) as an infant and has been unable to leave her home since. After a mysterious boy named Oli and his family move across the street, the eighteen-year-old risks everything to find herself, the meaning of love and the difference between being alive and living. The novel brings a new excitement to the activities people take for granted because they are experienced in normal, daily life.

In The Company of WomenJournals Publicist and Exhibits Coordinator, Katie Smart: Grace Bonney’s edited collection In the Company of Women: Inspiration and Advice from over 100 Makers, Artists, and Entrepreneurs isn’t a traditional vacation read (its hardcover form weighs three pounds!), but the content and images are so beautiful you’ll want to lug this book around with you all summer. This collection features interviews with creative and diverse women—furniture makers, graphic designers, comedians, tattoo artists, fashion designers, the list goes on—that include questions like “What did you want to be when you were a child?;” “What would you tell yourself ten to twenty years ago that you wish you knew then?;” and “In moments of self-doubt or adversity, how do you build yourself back up?” Alongside the Q&As, the book features exquisite photography that highlights the work spaces where these women chose to be most creative. I challenge you not to be motivated to tap into your own creative genius after finishing this book!Ivory+HC

Digital Access and Books Specialist, Rebecca Hambleton:  Ivory and Bone by Julie Eshbaugh. This is a YA book with similar themes as Pride and Prejudice. What makes this book interesting and unique is that it’s set in prehistoric times and follows a boy and his family who are desperate to make alliances with other clans through marriage.

What vacation reads would you recommend? Let us know in the comments!

Explore the Artists of Jessica Horton’s Art for an Undivided Earth


978-0-8223-6981-3_pr w stroke
In Art for an Undivided Earth: The American Indian Movement Generation, Jessica L. Horton explores how the artists of the American Indian Movement (AIM) generation remapped the spatial, temporal, and material coordinates of modernity by placing colonialism’s displacement of indigenous people, objects, and worldviews at the center of their work. Inspired to see the work Horton discusses in person? Read on to learn more about the artists and where their art is on display.

Jimmie Durham

Jimmie Durham (born 1940 in Washington, Arkansas) is an activist, sculptor, essayist, and poet whose works are held in major collections around the globe. In Art for an Undivided Earth, Jessica Horton explains: “Throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, Durham exhibited alongside, collaborated with, and wrote about the work of fellow indigenous artists. He profoundly impacted a discourse about Native American art and settler colonialism long after he moved to Mexico in 1987 and to Europe in 1994, at which time he cut his ties to U.S. institutions.”  A highly-anticipated retrospective of Durham’s work downloadbegan at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles in January 2017; it is now on display at the Walker Art Center  in Minneapolis, and later heads to The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, and the Remai Modern in Saskatoon.

 

James Luna

images

James Luna (born 1950 in Orange, California) is a Payómkawichum and Mexican-American artist known for his photography, performance art, and multimedia installations. According to Horton, “Luna’s work culminated a decade of curatorial efforts in the United States and Canada to enhance the visibility of Native artists at the Venice Biennale, the oldest and some say most prestigious art exhibition in the world.” Luna’s corpus of work is displayed on his website; the site also provides videos of his performance art. You can view Luna’s work, including his famous piece “Half Indian/Half Mexican,” in person by visiting the Denver Art Museum’s American Indian Collection.

Fred Kabotie

images

Fred Kabotie (1900-1986) was a Hopi artist best known for his painting, silverwork, illustrations, and pottery. In Art for an Undivided Earth, Horton points out that Kabotie “painted social and ceremonial dances from memory as government-imposed education and widespread bans on ritual practices aimed to transform Native bodies into productive labor for the U.S. economy in the first decades of the twentieth century.” Within Kabotie’s early works, Horton notes, this reveals “a persistent concern with maintaining Hopi sensibilities amid displacement.” Fred Kabotie’s work can be found in the Great Plains Art Museum’s Patricia J. and Stanley H. Broder Collection, the Albuquerque Museum’s permanent collection, and a current exhibit, “Spirit of Creation,” also at the Albuquerque Museum.

Kay Walkingstick

images

Kay WalkingStick (born 1935 in Syracuse, NY) is a landscape artist whose later paintings often incorporate patterns from Native American pottery and rugs. These landscapes are particularly remarkable because, as Horton emphasizes, “Walkingstick’s artistic practice refuses a logic of difference that lingered in late twentieth-century debates about modernist primitivism, the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990, and the Columbus Quincentennial, by forging affective bonds with white artistic predecessors.” Her work is in the collections of museums around the globe, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in New York and the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC. A retrospective of Walkingstick’s work, “Kay Walkingstick: An American Artist,” will travel to the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, Kalamazoo MI, the Gilcrease Art Museum, Tulsa OK, and the Montclair Art Museum, Montclair NJ, during 2017 and 2018. If you can’t make it to one of these museums, Walkingstick’s work is also displayed digitally on her website.

Robert Houle

qa_feature1

Robert Houle is a Saulteaux First Nations Canadian artist, critic, and curator who has worked to unify First Nations contemporary artists with the larger Canadian art scene. In Art for an Undivided Earth, Horton explains that Houle’s mixed-media works “revisit the entwined lineages of ethnography and abstraction to tell a survival story” (14). Houle’s work can be found in many public collections, including the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto ON, the Heard Museum, Phoenix AZ, the Art Gallery of Sudbury, Sudbury ON, and the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa ON.

To save 30% on Art for an Undivided Earth use coupon code E17HORTN at checkout on our website.

The Hypervisibility of Violence in Mexico

Rielle Navitski, author of the new book Public Spectacles of Violence: Sensational Cinema and Journalism in Early Twentieth-Century Mexico and Brazil, brings us today’s guest blog post.

Photo by Dina Canup

The epidemic levels of violence affecting Mexico made international headlines this past month when a report by the International Institute for Strategic Studies declared it the deadliest nation in the world after Syria, with a toll of 23,000 homicides in 2016. While the report’s critics called for greater nuance than this headline offers, there is no question that the conflict poses a profound threat to the very fabric of public life in Mexico. Criminal organizations challenge the government’s control of territory and its exclusive privilege to exercise physical force (its monopoly on violence, in sociologist Max Weber’s terms), although widespread corruption makes any sharp distinction between state and criminal actors difficult to sustain. Violence’s capacity to terrorize is amplified by unspeakable displays of cruelty—the staging of victims’ bodies in public spaces, the circulation of images of torture and murder online—even as forced disappearances and clandestine mass graves mask the conflict’s true extent.

As I observe in my book Public Spectacles of Violence, the proliferation of graphic images of violence and the blurring of boundaries between state and criminal aggression are far from a new phenomenon in Mexico. During the Mexican Revolution of 1910-1920—arguably the twentieth-century’s first social revolution—novel forms of visual culture like illustrated newspapers and magazines, postcard photographs, and film offered a flood of images of combat, executions, hangings, and ravaged bodies. Sparked by opposition to the thirty-five year dictatorship of Porfirio Díaz, the revolution claimed an estimated 1 million lives in a country of 12 million, drifting away from democratic ideals and rural demands for economic equality. The character of the conflict—marked by prolonged struggles between military factions defined more by their charismatic leaders rather than by their ideologies—continually threw into question the legitimacy of the deadly use of force and attacks on private property.

978-0-8223-6975-2

This crisis of political legitimacy is evident in the earliest box-office success of Mexican cinema, a 1919 crime film entitled El automóvil gris (The Grey Automobile). Based on the exploits of a criminal gang who traveled in the grey automobile of the film’s title and committed robberies dressed as soldiers from the army of Venustiano Carranza, El automóvil gris was shot by cameraman Enrique Rosas in an effort to mend the reputation of General Pablo González, who was suspected of complicity in the crimes. Patterned on popular crime films produced in France and the United States, El automóvil gris also drew on Mexico City’s sensationalistic press, which presented acts of robbery, kidnapping, and murder as signs of local modernity, since they demonstrated that the capital suffered the same social ills as industrialized metropolises like London, Paris, and New York. Implicit in these accounts of criminality was an acceptance of industrialization and urbanization’s social costs as the price of progress, measured by the standards of Europe and the United States.

As I hope to show in my book by examining parallel developments in the early mass cultures of Mexico and Brazil, the profound impact of violence on public life in modern Latin America cannot solely be attributed to failures of state formation or economic development in individual nations. Instead, it must be understood in light of the global dynamics of the capitalist economy, its role in the circulation of commodities and images, and its production of inequality. Commentators note that present-day criminal organizations in Mexico—whose ranks are swelled by young men with few opportunities in the formal economy—borrow and extend the business strategies of multinational corporations. In his book Narconomics, journalist Tom Wainright notes that Mexican cartels benefit from outsourcing select activities to Central American countries where operating costs are cheaper, and expand rapidly by lending their names and reputation to locally rooted criminal groups in a process akin to franchising. Observing the role of conspicuous consumption in cultures of organized crime in Mexico, Ed Vulliamy wrote in 2011 that “the greed for violence reflects the greed for brands, and becomes a brand in itself.” Observing that drug trafficking exemplifies the free flow of commodities underlying the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement, he provocatively describes the accompanying violence as “the inevitable war of capitalism gone mad.”

In their response to the IISS report mentioned above, Mexico’s foreign and interior ministries stressed the transnational character of the current violence, fueled by demand for narcotics north of the US-Mexico border and the flow of illegal firearms south from the United States. (A 2014 study found that arms purchased in the United States account for at least 70 percent of the weapons used in the conflict). Rather than remaining as spectators of this horrific conflict—or worse, turning away our gaze—it is essential that we examine our own position within the flows of narcotics, weapons, and images fueling it. Attending to its historical echoes can better attune us to the national and transnational forces that forge public spheres profoundly marked by spectacles of violence.

Read the introduction to Public Spectacles of Violence free online, and save 30% on the paperback using coupon code E17NAVIT on our website.

Read to Respond: Migration Studies

R2R final logoOur “Read to Respond” series addresses the current climate of misinformation by highlighting articles and books that encourage thoughtful, educated debate on today’s most pressing issues. This post focuses on immigration in commemoration with World Refugee Day, an international movement that supports families forced to flee and honors the strength, courage and perseverance of millions of refugees. Read, reflect, and share these resources in and out of the classroom to keep these important conversations going.

Migration Studies

These articles are freely available until December 15, 2017. Follow along with the series over the next several months and share your thoughts with #ReadtoRespond.

 

A Vinyl Freak Playlist by John Corbett

Today’s post is a playlist by John Corbett, author of Vinyl Freak:  Love Letters to a Dying Medium. Corbett is a music critic, record producer, and curator. He is the author of Microgroove: Forays into Other Music and Extended Play: Sounding Off from John Cage to Dr. Funkenstein, both also published by Duke University Press, and A Listener’s Guide to Free Improvisation. His writing has appeared in DownBeat, Bomb, Nka, and numerous other publications. He is the co-owner of Corbett vs. Dempsey, an art gallery in Chicago.

978-0-8223-6366-8_prOne of my preoccupations in writing about music and curating visual art has been the dialogue between material culture and cultural history. When artifacts move from being available to being unavailable, passing into a phase of having previously been available, their status as part of the historical record shifts. Notice of their existence becomes tenuous. Sometimes things are actively excluded, sometimes they’re rediscovered, or maybe they are lost forever. Just try to find tenor saxophonist Tommy Madman Jones’s LP Madman Speaks—virtually impossible! Susan Hiller’s beautiful, bittersweet video installation The Last Silent Movie (2007-08), which strings together a series of fragments of people telling stories in extinct or nearly extinct languages, brings such an idea to a visceral conclusion, suggesting the loss of entire lexicons and syntaxes and speech patterns. As a world, we are proportionately poorer for such vanishings.

In Vinyl Freak: Love Letters to a Dying Medium, I assembled most of the monthly (and later bi-monthly) columns that I composed for DownBeat magazine over a dozen years starting at the outset of the new millennium. These were dedicated to LPs, singles, and a few acetates or 78 rpm shellacs, all of which had fallen out of print and had never been reissued on CD. My aim, more than fluffing my record collector feathers, was to suggest the ways in which musical culture is written and rewritten in concert with its material self. Along the way, certain subthemes emerged, often unintentionally. For this playlist, I’ve extracted one of them: soul-jazz. In working on the column I was (and I continue to be) quite surprised how many wonderful records in this mode—funky, bluesy, organ-oriented, mostly recorded in the ‘50s and ‘60s, many of them for Chicago’s prolific Argo label—were impossible to find on disc. Indeed some of them are even now inaccessible on YouTube, where so much musical esoterica has resurfaced over the last decade.

Get in the good groove!

The Three Sounds, “Fannie Mae,” from Dangerous Dan Express

Thornel Schwartz with Bill Leslie, “Blue and Dues” from Soul Cookin’

 Gloria Coleman Quartet with Pola Roberts, “Funky Rob,” from Soul Sisters

Melvin Jackson, “Bold and Black,” from Funky Skull

Tommy Madman Jones, “Hi Fi Apartment,” 7-inch single

Bill Leslie, “Angel Eyes,” from Diggin’ the Chicks

A.K. Salim, “Salute to Zulu,” from Afro-Soul/Drum Orgy

Jack Wilson featuring Roy Ayers, from Ramblin’

Johnny Shacklett Trio, from Live at The Hoffman House

Cozy Eggleston, “Sweet Merri Dee,” from Grand Slam

Johnny Lytle Trio, “Blue Vibes,” from Blue Vibes

 To purchase Vinyl Freak at a 30% discount, use coupon code E17VINYL when ordering from our website.

Curating Crisis

ddthe_47_2The most recent issue of Theater, “Curating Crisis,” is the journal’s second issue devoted to the curation of performance. It includes an additional set of interviews with four leading performance curatorsFlorian Malzacher, Sodja Lotker, Miranda Wright, and Boris Charmatzthat continue the conversation of historical precedents for curators specializing in theater, dance, and other live forms. It examines the ways in which performance curators are responding to crises and conflicts both within the fields of performance, and in the spheres of politics, economics, and history.

A special section features a series of essays based on lectures originally presented in SpielART festival’s 2015 convening, “Show Me the World,” in which contributors ask how curation strategies might acknowledge and build from postcolonial contexts. The section introduces major questions provoked by rethinking the role of the curator in a time of increasingly transcultural exchange and exhibition.

“Curating Crisis” includes articles on topics such as:

  • Multiculturalism
  • Black American Performance Artistry
  • Performance Curation
  • Micropolitics
  • Performance History

and much more.

Browse the table-of-contents and read the introduction made freely available. To learn more about the topic, read “Performance Curators,” Theater’s first issue devoted to performance curation.

Symposium on the Contributions of Business to Economics

ddhope_49_2In the most recent issue of History of Political Economy, “Symposium on the Contributions of Business to Economics,” edited by Robert Van Horn and Edward Nik-khah, contributors examine how business has influenced economic policy, how businesses have actively participated in constructing economic doctrines, and how businesspersons used, engaged with, challenged, and steered economists in economic policy.

The issue focuses on the contributions of business to economics and brings together contributors from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. Editors and contributors examine the historiographical challenges of determining who is an economist and who is a businessperson. These essays shed light on how the relationship between business and economics has evolved and suggest directions for future historical work.

“Symposium of the Contributions of Business to Economics” includes articles on topics such as:

  • mercantilism
  • political economy
  • epistemology
  • international trade
  • business consulting
  • science and democracy

and much more.

Browse the table of contents and read the introduction, made freely available.

Read to Respond: Queer Studies

R2R final logoOur “Read to Respond” series addresses the current climate of misinformation by highlighting articles and books that encourage thoughtful, educated debate on today’s most pressing issues. This post focuses on queer studies in celebration of Pride Month and yesterday’s Equality March for Unity & Pride. Read, reflect, and share these resources in and out of the classroom to keep these important conversations going.

Queer Studies

These articles are freely available until December 15, 2017. Follow along with the series over the next several months and share your thoughts with #ReadtoRespond.