Issue 5


Bios : Brooke Holmes

What kind of work is needed to map the concept of bios? The word is ancient Greek. Its translation as “life” will be recognized as partial by most readers as a result of the ubiquity of the claim, made most forcefully by Giorgio Agamben (with acknowledged debts to Hannah Arendt and Michel Foucault), that ancient Greek “life” is divided at its core into bios . . .


Bios : Brooke Holmes

What kind of work is needed to map the concept of bios? The word is ancient Greek. Its translation as “life” will be recognized as partial by most readers as a result of the ubiquity of the claim, made most forcefully by Giorgio Agamben (with acknowledged debts to Hannah Arendt and Michel Foucault), that ancient Greek “life” is divided at its core into bios . . .


Decolonization : Seloua Luste Boulbina

How—from the North—does one lose direction [comment . . . perdre le nord]? It is hard to keep count, from the perspective of the post-empire, of the number of objects to which “decolonization” is applied today. It is as if it were necessary to decontaminate profoundly toxic ways of being, of acting, and of thinking. Decolonization, as a concept . . .


Decolonization : Seloua Luste Boulbina

How—from the North—does one lose direction [comment . . . perdre le nord]? It is hard to keep count, from the perspective of the post-empire, of the number of objects to which “decolonization” is applied today. It is as if it were necessary to decontaminate profoundly toxic ways of being, of acting, and of thinking. Decolonization, as a concept . . .


Unmixing : Sadia Abbas

I would like to consider what it would mean to enter the term “unmixing” into the political lexicon. It is neither keyword nor political concept yet but should certainly be the former, even if it cannot be considered the latter. I will begin this essay by laying out a historical narrative, then follow with a reading of some South Asian, Urdu, and English texts, and conclude . . .


Unmixing : Sadia Abbas

I would like to consider what it would mean to enter the term “unmixing” into the political lexicon. It is neither keyword nor political concept yet but should certainly be the former, even if it cannot be considered the latter. I will begin this essay by laying out a historical narrative, then follow with a reading of some South Asian, Urdu, and English texts, and conclude . . .


Hegemony : Brian Meeks

I have been thinking about hegemony in the Caribbean for more than two decades, utilizing the Gramscian notion that social formations are structured in dominance, but that domination is often not primarily executed through force; rather, the social bloc in charge is able to produce and reproduce discourses and sets of ideas that give structure and shape to its apparent . . .


Hegemony : Brian Meeks

I have been thinking about hegemony in the Caribbean for more than two decades, utilizing the Gramscian notion that social formations are structured in dominance, but that domination is often not primarily executed through force; rather, the social bloc in charge is able to produce and reproduce discourses and sets of ideas that give structure and shape to its apparent . . .


Impunity : Zahid R. Chaudhary

On January 23, 2016 Trump declaimed at a rally in Sioux Center, Iowa: “I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.” The statement—perhaps exaggerated and perhaps not—is outside the bounds of true and false because it is a performative, enacting, among other things, a masculinist will to power, one that anticipates . . .


Impunity : Zahid R. Chaudhary

On January 23, 2016 Trump declaimed at a rally in Sioux Center, Iowa: “I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.” The statement—perhaps exaggerated and perhaps not—is outside the bounds of true and false because it is a performative, enacting, among other things, a masculinist will to power, one that anticipates . . .


Trump : Joan Wallach Scott

Is “trump” a political concept in the sense that Adi Ophir has defined it?—as a “unit of mental representation,” a linguistic performance that “tries to explain, to present and to express the essence of what the concept refers to.” Is it, pace Koselleck, more than a word? He writes, “In use a word can be unambiguous. By contrast, a concept must remain ambiguous in order . . .


Trump : Joan Wallach Scott

Is “trump” a political concept in the sense that Adi Ophir has defined it?—as a “unit of mental representation,” a linguistic performance that “tries to explain, to present and to express the essence of what the concept refers to.” Is it, pace Koselleck, more than a word? He writes, “In use a word can be unambiguous. By contrast, a concept must remain ambiguous in order . . .


Better : Jacques Lezra

“Better” words—that’s a claim we could understand; perhaps today we could generally endorse the idea that it’s better to have better words to hand than less-good ones (though we’d be hard-pressed to correlate an education, even or especially at an Ivy League school, with the “knowledge” or “having” of such better words). Some words are “better” than others . . .


Better : Jacques Lezra

“Better” words—that’s a claim we could understand; perhaps today we could generally endorse the idea that it’s better to have better words to hand than less-good ones (though we’d be hard-pressed to correlate an education, even or especially at an Ivy League school, with the “knowledge” or “having” of such better words). Some words are “better” than others . . .


Disruption : Ben Parker

In the year after Donald Trump was elected, the opinion pages of The New York Times were consistent in diagnosing the threat a Trump presidency bore to the republic, in essays titled “Democracy, Disrupted,” “Declaration of Disruption,” “The President’s Self-Destructive Disruption,” and “The Dangers of Disruption.” What did the various . . .


Disruption : Ben Parker

In the year after Donald Trump was elected, the opinion pages of The New York Times were consistent in diagnosing the threat a Trump presidency bore to the republic, in essays titled “Democracy, Disrupted,” “Declaration of Disruption,” “The President’s Self-Destructive Disruption,” and “The Dangers of Disruption.” What did the various . . .


Reading : John Cayley

The President does not read. This statement, my own, is derived from two articles in the Washington Post and the New York Times that were published before and after the 2016 election, respectively. I might have quoted something like it, out of context, from the title of the Washington Post article, but Trump was not yet president and I would have been pointedly . . .


Reading : John Cayley

The President does not read. This statement, my own, is derived from two articles in the Washington Post and the New York Times that were published before and after the 2016 election, respectively. I might have quoted something like it, out of context, from the title of the Washington Post article, but Trump was not yet president and I would have been pointedly . . .