While rhetoric as a discipline is firmly planted in humanism and anthropology, posthumanism seeks to leave the human behind. This highly original examination of Kenneth Burke’s thought grapples with these ostensibly contradictory concepts as opportunities for invention, revision, and, importantly, transdisciplinary knowledge making.
Rather than simply mapping posthumanist rhetorics onto Burke’s scholarship, Kenneth Burke + The Posthuman focuses on the multiplicity of ideas found both in his work and in the idea of posthumanism. Taking varied approaches organized within a framework of boundaries and futures, the contributors show that studying the humanist theories of Burke in this way creates a satisfyingly chaotic web of interconnections. The essays look at how Burke’s writing on the human mind and technology, from his earliest works to his very latest revisions, interrelates with current concepts such as new materiality and coevolution. Throughout, the contributors pay close attention to the fluidity, concerns, and contradictions inherent in language, symbolism, and subjectivity.
A unique, illuminating exploration of the contested relationship between bodies and language, this inherently transdisciplinary book will propel important future inquiry by scholars of rhetoric, Burke, and posthumanism.
In addition to the editors, the contributors are Casey Boyle, Kristie Fleckenstein, Nathan Gale, Julie Jung, Steven B. Katz, Steven LeMieux, Jodie Nicotra, Jeff Pruchnic, Timothy Richardson, Thomas Rickert, and Robert Wess.
About the Author
Chris Mays is Assistant Professor of English at the University of Nevada, Reno.
Nathaniel A. Rivers is Associate Professor of English at Saint Louis University and coeditor of Thinking with Bruno Latour in Rhetoric and Composition and Literature as Equipment for Living: The Literary Reviews of Kenneth Burke.
Kellie Sharp-Hoskins is Assistant Professor of Rhetoric at New Mexico State University.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Articulating Ambiguous Compatibilities Chris Mays Nathaniel A. Rivers Kellie Sharp-Hoskins 1
1 Minding Mind: Kenneth Burke, Gregory Bateson, and Posthuman Rhetoric Kristie S. Fleckenstein 23
2 The Cyburke Manifesto, or, Two Lessons from Burke on the Rhetoric and Ethics of Posthumanism Jeff Pruchnic 42
3 Revision as Heresy: Posthuman Writing Systems and Kenneth Burke's "Piety" Chris Mays 61
4 Burke's Counter-Nature: Posthumanism in the Anthropocene Robert Wess 80
5 Technique-Technology-Transcendence: Machination and Amechania in Burke, Nietzsche, and Parmenides Thomas Rickert 98
6 The Uses of Compulsion: Recasting Burke's Technological Psychosis in a Comic Frame Jodie Nicotra 127
7 A Predestination for the Posthumanistic Steven B. Katz Nathaniel A. Rivers 142
8 Emergent Mattering: Building Rhetorical Ethics at the Limits of the Human Julie Jung Kellie Sharp-Hoskins 162
9 What Are Humans For? Nathan Gale Timothy Richardson 184
10 A Sustainable Dystopia Casey Boyle Steven LcMieux 203
List of Contributors 227