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Culture, Catastrophe, and Rhetoric

The Texture of Political Action

Edited by Robert Hariman and Ralph Cintron

274 pages, 5 illus., 1 table, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78238-746-6 $95.00/£67.00 Hb Published (October 2015)

eISBN 978-1-78238-747-3 eBook


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“…the contributors here have given us a great deal to think about, especially the importance of rhetoric in the ‘texture’ of political discourse, and anthropologists can apply our methods and concepts to further elucidate and elaborate those processes and their rhetorical and practical consequences.” · Anthropology Review Database

“…an excellent collection and a fitting contribution to both the Rhetoric + Culture series and to the field as a whole… The range and inventiveness of methodological innovations in the volume is one of its primary strengths.” · Michael Kaplan, Baruch College, City University of New York

“This is a splendid collection, coherent and framed in two magisterial overviews, and so is greater than the sum of its parts. It has the capacity to enhance the subtlety and clarity of argument in the study of politics and political action across a wide variety of sites in today’s world. Both of the key ideas, the texture of political action and the primacy of catastrophe over revolution in today’s world, are very well argued and richly illustrated throughout.” · Michael Carrithers, Durham University

This volume explores political culture, especially the catastrophic elements of the global social order emerging in the twenty-first century. By emphasizing the texture of political action, the book theorizes how social context becomes evident on the surface of events and analyzes the performative dimensions of political experience. The attention to catastrophe allows for an understanding of how ordinary people contend with normal system operation once it is indistinguishable from system breakdown. Through an array of case studies, the book provides an account of change as it is experienced, negotiated, and resisted in specific settings that define a society’s capacity for political action.

Robert Hariman is Professor in the Department of Communication Studies at Northwestern University. He is the author of Political Style: The Artistry of Power and, with John Louis Lucaites, No Caption Needed: Iconic Photographs, Public Culture, and Liberal Democracy.

Ralph Cintron has a joint appointment in the Departments of English and Latin American and Latino Studies at University of Illinois at Chicago. He is the author of Angels’ Town: Chero Ways, Gang Life, and Rhetorics of the Everyday, and is completing Democracy as Fetish: Fieldwork, Rhetoric, and the Oligarchic Condition.

Series: Volume 7, Studies in Rhetoric and Culture
Subject: Theory & Methodology in Anthropology General Cultural Studies
Area:

LC: JA75.7 .C3815 2015

BISAC: SOC002010 SOCIAL SCIENCE/Anthropology/Cultural; POL000000 POLITICAL SCIENCE/General; LAN015000 LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES/Rhetoric

BIC: JHMC Social & cultural anthropology, ethnography; JPA Political science & theory




Contents

List of Illustrations
Preface

Introduction
Robert Hariman

Chapter 1. The Communal Dilemma as a Cultural Resource in Hungarian Political Expression
David Boromisza-Habashi

Chapter 2. Chronotopes of the Political: Public Discourse, News Media, and Mass Action in Post-Conflict Macedonia
Andrew Graan

Chapter 3. The In-Between States: Enduring Catastrophes as Sources of Democracy’s Deadlocks in the Balkans: The Case of Kosovo
Naser Miftari

Chapter 4. Occupy Wall Street as Rhetorical Citizenship: The Ongoing Relevance of Pragmatism for Deliberative Democracy
Robert Danisch

Chapter 5. Contemporary Social Movements and the Emergent Nomadic Political Logic
Peter N. Funke and Todd Wolfson

Chapter 6. “Project Heat” and Sensory Politics in Redeveloping Chicago Public Housing
Catherine Fennell

Chapter 7. Reading between the Digital Lines: Narrating the Political Rhetoric of Ethical Consumption
Eleftheria J. Lekakis

Chapter 8. The Uncertainty of Power and the Certainty of Irony: Encountering the State in Kara, Southern Ethiopia
Felix Girke

Chapter 9. Grassroots Discourses in Times of Scarcity: Debating the 2004 Locust Plague in Northwestern Senegal and the World
Christian Meyer

Chapter 10. Too Too Much Much: Presence and Catastrophe in Contemporary Art
Monica Westin

Conclusion: What Next? Modernity, Revolution, and the “Turn” to Catastrophe
Ralph Cintron

Contributors
Index

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