Moves from the discourses of dialectical negation to cultural-populist affirmationthat is, from Hegel to Madonna Studiesin order to envision a mode of critique that can persuasively describe and explain the cultural contradictions of late capitalism.
From Hegel to Madonna presents a genealogical survey of the discourses of negation and affirmation associated with the work of Hegel, Adorno, Deleuze, and Guattari; then, rotating from the philosophical to the political-economic axis, turns to the problem of a general economy of "commodity-fetishism." Drawing on the work of Marx and Freud, Miklitsch mobilizes a new, renewed understanding of "commodity fetishism"what he calls the commodity-body-signin order to examine received notions of consumption and commodification. The aim is to envision a dialectical mode of critique, at once critical and affirmative, that can account for the cultural contradictions of late capitalism. The author also analyzes the phenomenon of Madonna Studies, reading the interest in the pop star as a sign of the academic times, a symptomatic figure not only of cultural studies in all its celebratory, cultural-populist excess but of a critical discourse responsive to postmodern culture in all its politically complex mutability.
About the Author
Robert Miklitsch is Assistant Professor of English at Ohio University.
Table of Contents
List of Abbreviations
Introduction: From Adorno to the Clash
"Into the Groove": Dance, Distraction, Reproduction
The Body in Adorno, Adorno's Body
The Body in Dance
After Hegel: From Adorno to Barthes
The Work of Affirmation
Vox Pop Theory
From Negation to Affirmation
Working in and for the Negative: On Hegel's Dialectic
Late Hegelianism: On Adorno's Negative Dialectics
Affirming Affirmation: On Nietzsche and Deleuze and Guattari
Transit: From Negation/Affirmation to Critical Affirmation
Turn: From "Affirmative Culture" to the Hysteria of Castration
Freud, Marx, Baudrillard, or That "Surplus" Which Is Sign-Value
Commodity-as-Art, Art-as-Commodity: Warhol's Coca-Cola Bottles, Shoes and Soup Cans
Hard-Core Commodity Aesthetics: Warhol's Sticky Fingers and the Popular-Cultural Phallus
Marx after Baudrillard: The Commodity-Body-Sign
Consumption Redux : Cultural Populism, Consummativity, and the Consumptive "Beast of Burden"
Marx avec Duchamp: Socialized Consumption and De-Commodification
Return: Contradiction, Circulation, and the Production of Sign-Value
Transit: (M)TV, The Art-Commodity in an Age of Electronic Reproduction
The Case of "Madonna Studies"
Corpus Delicti : The Rise of Madonna Studies
Madonna Overdrive: The Star Commodity-Body-Sign
Body of Evidence: The Fatality of Madonna Studies