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polymexina in theoryishotcrew

:D here's my list.

1. The Methodology of the Oppressed by Chela Sandoval
2. Soul Talk by Gloria Akasha Hull
3. Culture and Truth by Renato Rosaldo
4. Thirdspace by Edward Soja
5. Homo Ludens by Huizinga
6. Tales of Dark Skinned Women by Gargi Bhattacharyya
7. In Other Worlds by Spivak
8. Queer Phenomenology by Sara Ahmed
9. "A Cyborg Manifesto" by Donna Haraway
10. "Situated Knowledges" by Donna Haraway

:braces self:



1. Huizinga seems like a bit of an odd man out on your list. I have never read Homo Ludens but have read the first 50 pages of his Autumn of the Middle Ages at least 3 times in my attempt to read the whole thing (it is a side interest, so it gets repeatedly pushed into the background). Tell me about Homo Ludens. From looking, it seems like a quite different type of work from Autumn. I am sure poldy will have follow up questions on it based on your response.

2. A couple of the authors/books on your list (Rosaldo and Sandoval) are ones that are touted to be field challengers or changers. What makes them so? What do their texts introduce that challenged cultural criticism as usual? I read today a line in a book about how theory can only actually emerge when convention is found to be wanting (sort of a paradigm shift). How might these works fit into such an understanding of theory?

Edited at 2010-07-13 02:20 am (UTC)
1. I haven't read Autumn of the Middle Ages :(, but have read Homo Ludens a few times. Basically, I use it as an intro text in my course on US culture and technology, because Huizinga's arguing that man's interest in playing and play-time is hugely important, and that play time is distinct from regular time and from regular space. What's neat about this is that other theorists working on cybercultural studies have taken his concept of homo ludens and have used this to press really hard on the kinds of worlds created through online gaming. The best secondary articles on this IMO are Edmund Chang's "Gaming as Writing" and Hayot and Wesp's "Towards a Critical Aesthetic of Virtual World Geographies."

Huizinga's really a stepping stone for me to some really interesting theorizations about play-space and domesticity and the imagination.

2. Sandoval does a couple of really neat things. :D First, she flips up the standard timeline of the women's right movement, and basically finds a way to wedge in these counter histories produced by the 3rd world feminist movements in the US. Then, and this is the awesome part, she argues that the techniques used by WOC activists and queer activists are useful both in and outside the academy. That's why it's so important that it's a methodology -- even though it's wicked dense writing, it's supposed to be a portable approach to work crossing academic and activist lines.

Rosaldo challenged what it means to be an anthropologist, and suggested that the way "we" write about the "Other" has some serious theoretical and implications. He was one of the first authors I read that suggested that embodiment was both a spiritual and methodological concern.
Στρικεσ με τηατ ονε οφ τηε μοστ (oops)

Strikes me that one of the most important elements to the Sandoval for you is that she is attempting to breach the seemingly unbreachable divide between academic and activist feminism. BUT, by turning theory into method, doesn't that dilute, in many ways, the feminist notion of changing the world--in a sense of trying to change the default mode of thinking from always masculine to incorporating naturally the feminine? When theory becomes a portable methodology instead of a way of thinking and viewing the world, it becomes like a new hat--something artificial that we can use or not, put on or not, to temporarily change. Or a cookie cutter with which we cut into dough to force the material to conform to the shape we want. Methodology becomes an artificial substitute for actual thinking and is temporary, outside of the text (or material under examination) and unnatural.

Also, is the Rosaldo really the first person in Anth to get them to think about how they write about the "Other"? I find this disturbing for some reason. Also, I have no idea what you mean by " embodiment was both a spiritual and methodological concern." Can you elaborate?
No. Boas did this. Then Ed Sapir did it. In fact, it's the only thing we consistently talk about for all of our disciplinary history. Miner did it in a way that is so basic my undergrads get it easily, and that was in 1956.

This claim about Rosaldo? Patently false.
Add to Kat-chan's request for information about embodiment. It is, so far as I can tell, a central axiom of the area where your books work - yet I don't really understand what it is and why it is so pivotal and - importantly - what are the problems with the concept of embodiment.
Can I answer this instead?
Yes. Please do.
I will, but I'll give the applicant a chance to do it first, maybe? I do want to say that I don't think embodiment is the central axis on which the list turns, as somebody who does embodiment stuff, but I am all completely up for an embodiment conversation.
If you do, poldy wants all three components answered.
Well, I suppose it's good for poldy to want things. Probably, I'll say what I damn well please, regardless of what poldy wants, but the three components do all seem interesting and important.
ps: it's about my wymynhudz partz.
Fight the patriarchal poldy!
lol. Mostly, I just don't like it when anyone tries to tell me what to do. It's about resistance. And Karl Marx.
Good, good.

By the way, I said axiom not axis. I don't see it as the central axis either. Carry on.
I don't understand how it even is an axiom.
Rosato as a place to go on the anthropology of embodiment is, frankly, just a little bit bizarre. Why do you think anthropologists should look at the body? How do you think Rosaldo, of all people, gives you helpful tools to do this?