Sentient Flesh: Thinking in Disorder, Poiesis in Black

Sentient Flesh: Thinking in Disorder, Poiesis in Black

by R. A. Judy

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 In Sentient Flesh R. A. Judy takes up freedman Tom Windham’s 1937 remark “we should have our liberty 'cause . . . us is human flesh" as a point of departure for an extended meditation on questions of the human, epistemology, and the historical ways in which the black being is understood. Drawing on numerous fields, from literary theory and musicology, to political theory and phenomenology, as well as Greek and Arabic philosophy, Judy engages literary texts and performative practices such as music and dance that express knowledge and conceptions of humanity appositional to those grounding modern racialized capitalism. Operating as critiques of Western humanism, these practices and modes of being-in-the-world—which he theorizes as “thinking in disorder,” or “poiēsis in black”—foreground the irreducible concomitance of flesh, thinking, and personhood. As Judy demonstrates, recognizing this concomitance is central to finding a way past the destructive force of ontology that still holds us in thrall. Erudite and capacious, Sentient Flesh offers a major intervention in the black study of life. 

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781478012559
Publisher: Duke University Press
Publication date: 10/02/2020
Series: Black Outdoors: Innovations in the Poetics of Study
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 619
File size: 33 MB
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About the Author

R. A. Judy is Professor of Critical and Cultural Studies at the University of Pittsburgh and author of (Dis)forming the American Canon: African-Arabic Slave Narratives and the Vernacular.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations  ix
Notes on Translation and Transliteration  xi
Preface: Preliminary Signposts  xiii
Acknowledgments  xxi
Introduction: Body and Flesh  1
[1st Set]
On Lohengrin's Swan  25
Sentient Flesh  150
[2nd Set]
Sentient Flesh Dancing  215
Poiēsis in Black  252
Para-Semiosis  319
Coda: Gifting Blues Love-Improper  418
Notes  457
Bibliography  543

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