From clandestine images of Jewish children isolated in Nazi ghettos and Japanese American children incarcerated in camps to images of Native children removed to North American boarding schools, classroom photographs of schoolchildren are pervasive even in repressive historical and political contexts. School Photos in Liquid Time offers a closer look at this genre of vernacular photography, tracing how photography advances ideologies of social assimilation as well as those of hierarchy and exclusion. In Marianne Hirsch and Leo Spitzer’s deft analysis, school photographs reveal connections between the histories of persecuted subjects in different national and imperial centers.
Video / Audio
In Inventing Tomorrow, Sarah Cole provides a definitive account of Wells’s work and ideas. She contends that Wells casts new light on modernism and its values: on topics from warfare to science to time, his work resonates both thematically and aesthetically with some of the most ambitious modernists. At the same time, unlike many modernists, Wells believed that literature had a pressing place in public life, and his works reached a wide range of readers. While recognizing Wells’s limitations, Cole offers a new account of his distinctive style as well as his interventions into social and political thought. She illuminates how Wells embodies twentieth-century literature at its most expansive and engaged. An ambitious rethinking of Wells as both writer and thinker, Inventing Tomorrow suggests that he offers a timely model for literature’s moral responsibility to imagine a better global future.
Shadows of Doubt reveals how deeply stereotypes distort our interactions, shape crime, and deform the criminal justice system. If you’re a robber, how do you choose your victims? As a police officer, how afraid are you of the young man you’re about to arrest? As a judge, do you think the suspect in front of you will show up in court if released from pretrial detention? As a juror, does the defendant seem guilty to you? Your answers may depend on the stereotypes you hold, and the stereotypes you believe others hold. In this provocative, pioneering book, economists Brendan O’Flaherty and Rajiv Sethi explore how stereotypes can shape the ways crimes unfold and how they contaminate the justice system through far more insidious, pervasive, and surprising paths than we have previously imagined
In this fascinating and deeply researched book, Sharon Marcus challenges everything you thought you knew about our obsession with fame. Icons are not merely famous for being famous; the media alone cannot make or break stars; fans are not simply passive dupes. Instead, journalists, the public, and celebrities themselves all compete, passionately and expertly, to shape the stories we tell about celebrities and fans. The result: a high-stakes drama as endless as it is unpredictable.
In The Perils of the One, Stathis Gourgouris offers a philosophical anthropology that confronts the legacy of “monarchical thinking”: the desire to subjugate oneself to unitary principles and structures, whether political, moral, theological, or secular. In wide-ranging essays that are at once poetic and polemical, intellectual and passionate, Gourgouris reads across politics and theology, literary and art criticism, psychoanalysis and feminism in a critique of both political theology and the metaphysics of secularism. He engages with a range of figures from the Apostle Paul and Trinitarian theologians, to La Boétie, Schmitt, and Freud, to contemporary thinkers such as Clastres, Said, Castoriadis, Žižek, Butler, and Irigaray. At once a broad perspective on human history and a detailed examination of our present moment, The Perils of the One offers glimpses of what a counterpolitics of autonomy would look like from anarchic subjectivities that refuse external ideals, resist the allure of command and obedience, and embrace otherness.
Humans and microbes have always co-habited, and their relationship has had a profound influence on human history—especially in cities, the crossroads of the movements of people, goods, and germs. Dr. Rebecca Hayes Jacobs will discuss her work as co-curator of Germ City: Microbes and the Metropolis, a 2018 exhibition at the City Museum of New York that explored the complex story of the city's long battle against infectious disease—a fight involving government, urban planners, medical professionals, businesses, and activists. Planned to mark the centennial of the Spanish Flu pandemic, the show was organized in collaboration with The New York Academy of Medicine and Wellcome as part of the latter's international project Contagious Cities, a multi-city research and public humanities porject that explored the interplay of people and pathogens in urban contexts.
The new science of paternity, with methods such as blood typing, fingerprinting, and facial analysis, would bring clarity to the conundrum of fatherhood—or so it appeared. Suddenly, it would be possible to establish family relationships, expose adulterous affairs, locate errant fathers, unravel baby mix-ups, and discover one’s true race and ethnicity. Tracing the scientific quest for the father up to the present, with the advent of seemingly foolproof DNA analysis, Nara B. Milanich shows that the effort to establish biological truth has not ended the quest for the father. Rather, scientific certainty has revealed the fundamentally social, cultural, and political nature of paternity. As Paternity shows, in the age of modern genetics the answer to the question “Who’s your father?” remains as complicated as ever.
Karen Van Dyck, Xiaolu Guo, Kaiama L. Glover, and Zaid Jabri, all former fellows of Columbia’s Institute for Ideas and Imagination, will discuss their diverse practices of translation and transliteration, and the artistic and political consequences of living, working, and moving between languages. The conversation began in spring 2019 at the Institute in Paris around Karen Van Dyck’s research on translingual writing of the Greek Diaspora which addresses the multilingual lives of migrants as a resource for literature, translation and social policy. Various types of movement among places - diasporic, immigrant, exilic, cosmopolitan - imagine different forms of translation that emphasize diverse ways of moving among languages: diglossia, intralingualism, transliteration, homophony. Might such translingual collaborations offer alternative translation practices and solutions to the impasses of ethnocentrism?
- December 18, 2017 A Poetics of Politics? A talk by Terrance Hayes
- March 28, 2012 The Money Series: An Anthropologist on Wall Street
- November 9, 2011 The Money Series: The Global Minotaur: The Crash of 2008 and the Euro-Zone Crisis
- February 10, 2011 Egypt Arising, Part 1 of 2
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We feature talks with professors about their recent work, publications, novels and more. Hear them read from their work, and also responses from other professors in their fields. Hosted by Anne Levitsky.