The Shape of the Signifier: 1967 to the End of History / Edition 1 by Walter Benn Michaels | 9780691126180 | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
The Shape of the Signifier: 1967 to the End of History / Edition 1

The Shape of the Signifier: 1967 to the End of History / Edition 1

by Walter Benn Michaels
     
 

ISBN-10: 0691126186

ISBN-13: 9780691126180

Pub. Date: 10/09/2006

Publisher: Princeton University Press

The Shape of the Signifier is a critique of recent theory—primarily literary but also cultural and political. Bringing together previously unconnected strands of Michaels's thought—from "Against Theory" to Our America—it anatomizes what's fundamentally at stake when we think of literature in terms of the experience of the reader rather

Overview

The Shape of the Signifier is a critique of recent theory—primarily literary but also cultural and political. Bringing together previously unconnected strands of Michaels's thought—from "Against Theory" to Our America—it anatomizes what's fundamentally at stake when we think of literature in terms of the experience of the reader rather than the intention of the author, and when we substitute the question of who people are for the question of what they believe.

With signature virtuosity, Michaels shows how the replacement of ideological difference (we believe different things) with identitarian difference (we speak different languages, we have different bodies and different histories) organizes the thinking of writers from Richard Rorty to Octavia Butler to Samuel Huntington to Kathy Acker. He then examines how this shift produces the narrative logic of texts ranging from Toni Morrison's Beloved to Michael Hardt and Toni Negri's Empire. As with everything Michaels writes, The Shape of the Signifier is sure to leave controversy and debate in its wake.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691126180
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
10/09/2006
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
232
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.80(h) x 0.60(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii
Introduction: The Blank Page 1
One: Posthistoricism 19
The End of History 19
Political Science Fictions 26
Partez au vert/Go on the green 41
The Shape of the Signifier 51
The End of Theory 66
Two: Prehistoricism 82
rocks 82
and stones 105
and trees 118
Three: Historicism 129
Remembering 129
Reliving 140
Dismembering 149
Forgetting 158
Coda: Empires of the Senseless 169
Notes 183
Index 213

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