Spectral Places, Subjectivities and Politics

By Juliana Martínez

María del Pilar Blanco and Esther Peeren, eds. The Spectralities Reader: Ghosts and Haunting in Contemporary Cultural Theory. Bloomsbury, 2013. 569 pp.

With an all-star Table of Contents that includes Giorgio Agamben, Arjun Appadurai, Ulrich Baer, Jacques Derrida, and Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, among others, The Spectralities Reader compiles the founding texts of what the editors call the “spectral turn,” as well as the more salient critiques that have fuelled one of the more productive debates in the humanities, the social sciences, and the arts over the last twenty-five years.
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Glorious and Brave: An American’s Take on Canadian Art

By Mary Elizabeth Luka

Denise Markonish, Ed. Oh Canada: Contemporary Art from North North America. The MIT Press, 2012. 400 pp.

From the first images and words of the Oh, Canada catalogue, it is evident that Denise Markonish is a curator in love with the thousands of artistic works, the 800 artists, and the dozens of critics, commentators and curators she has discovered, considered, and pulled together in a relatively idiosyncratic manner from a country abutting her own.
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The Shape of Things

By Sam Han

Peter Sloterdijk. Bubbles: Spheres Volume I: Microspherology. Trans. Wieland Hoban. Semiotext(e), 2011. 664pp. 

For anyone even remotely interested in philosophy, when a figure sets out to “correct” Heidegger, you want to pay attention. This is not necessarily out of admiration for the author of Being and Time, or his ideas, but rather out of a genuine curiosity made up of equal parts amazement and horror.
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No Local: Globalization and the Remaking of Americanism

By Benjamin Balthaser

Sarika Chandra. Dislocalism: The Crisis of Globalization and the Remobilizing of Americanism. Ohio State University Press. 2011. 303pp.

In the final section of Capital, Marx makes a striking observation: despite destroying the land-holding peasantry, the birth of manufacturing in England did not wipe out the small, disconnected villages of rural England, but rather refashioned them in capital’s image, as sites of subsidiary resource production, even poorer and more marginal than they had been before (Marx 918).
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