Empire Burlesque: The Fate of Critical Culture in Global America

Empire Burlesque: The Fate of Critical Culture in Global America

by Daniel T. O'Hara, O'Hara
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

ISBN-10: 0822330199

ISBN-13: 9780822330196

Pub. Date: 04/09/2003

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

Empire Burlesque traces the emergence of the contemporary global context within which American critical identity is formed. Daniel T. O’Hara argues that globalization has had a markedly negative impact on American cultural criticism, circumscribing both its material and imaginative potential, reducing much of it to absurdity. By highlighting the

Overview

Empire Burlesque traces the emergence of the contemporary global context within which American critical identity is formed. Daniel T. O’Hara argues that globalization has had a markedly negative impact on American cultural criticism, circumscribing both its material and imaginative potential, reducing much of it to absurdity. By highlighting the spectacle of its own self-parody, O’Hara aims to shock U.S. cultural criticism back into a sense of ethical responsibility.

Empire Burlesque presents several interrelated analyses through readings of a range of writers and cultural figures including Henry James, Freud, Said, De Man, Derrida, and Cordwainer Smith (an academic, spy, and classic 1950s and 1960s science fiction writer). It describes the debilitating effects of globalization on the university in general and the field of literary studies in particular, it critiques literary studies’ embrace of globalization theory in the name of a blind and vacant modernization, and it meditates on the ways critical reading and writing can facilitate an imaginative alternative to institutionalized practices of modernization. Drawing on Lacanian psychoanalytical theory, it diagnoses contemporary American Studies as typically driven by the mindless abjection and transference of professional identities.

A provocative commentary on contemporary cultural criticism, Empire Burlesque will inform debates on the American university across the humanities, particularly among those in literary criticism, cultural studies, and American studies.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780822330196
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
04/09/2003
Series:
New Americanists
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
392
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.13(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Preface vii

Acknowledgments xiii

Introduction: We Welcoming Others, or What's Wrong with the Global Point of View? 1

I. Reading as a Vanishing Act

1. Edward W. Said and the Fate of Critical Culture 29

2. Why Foucault No Longer Matters 43

3. Lentricchia's Frankness and the Place of Literature 62

II. Globalizing Literary Studies

4. Redesigning the Lessons of Literature 95

5. The Return to Ethics and the Specter of Reading 114

6. Class in a Global Light: The Two Professions 136

III. Analyzing Global America

7. Transference and Abjection: An Analytic Parable 163

8. Ghostwork: An Uncanny Prospect for New Americanists 183

9. Specter of Theory: The Bad Conscience of American Criticism 220

IV. Reading Worlds

10. Empire Baroque: Becoming Other in Henry James 237

11. Planet Buyer and the Catmaster: A Critical Future for Transference 301

Notes 339

Bibliography 357

Index 365

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >