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Anthony Di Fiore, Chair SAC 4.102, Mailcode C3200 78712 • 512-471-4206

Fall 2004

ANT 394M • Public Culture

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
28675 M
12:00 PM-3:00 PM
EPS 1.128

Course Description

This course is an introduction to the emerging theory and ethnography of public culture. It takes culture to be: 1) a public circulation of signs, discourses, goods, sensibilities, imaginaries, desires, expressive forms, etc. and 2) a circulation which is also located, or made social, political, and sensate in institutions, laws, forms of publicity, publics, social movements, physical and social spaces, subjectivities, etc. Public culture impacts, and gives form to, circumstances, identities, surges of power, and structures of feeling in every arena from everyday life practices to nationalist ideologies. We will discuss the public sphere and publics, emergent affect, the charged border between things public and private as forms surge into view or submerge into hiding, the desire for public recognition and public form, and the circuits of circulation evident in technologies, industries and professions. We will be studying public culture with a particular view to its cultural generativity or poesis; to this end, we'll be thinking theoretically about theories of hegemony, transgression and excess, articulation, emergent structures of feeling, the surge of affect, power's productivity, and the delineation of the practices of everyday life.


Readings will be drawn from: Catherine Lutz. Home Front Alan Klima. The Funeral Casino. Donna Haraway. The Companion Species Manifesto. Michael Warner. The Trouble with Normal. Amitava Kumar. Passport Photos. Steven Gregory. Santeria. Judith Farquhar. Appetites. Barbara Browning. Infectious Rhythm. Leslie Stern. The Smoking Book. Toby Miller. Sportsex. Julie Taylor. Paper Tangos. Ann Cvetkovitch. An Archive of Feelings: Trauma, Sexuality, and Lesbian Public Cultures Richard Flores. Remembering the Alamo: Memory, Modernity and the Master Symbol. Lauren Berlant. The Queen of America Goes to Washington City. Lauren Berlant. Our Monica/Ourselves. Susan Harding. The Book of Jerry Falwell. Patricia Williams. The Alchemy of Race and Rights. Anna McCarthy. Ambient Television. Donzelot, Jacques. The Policing of Families Baltimore and London. The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997 Wolfgang Schivelbusch. The Railway Journey: The Industrialization of Time and Space in the 19th Century. Berkeley: The University of California Press, 1986 Jennifer Gonzalez. "Autotopographies." Prosthetic Territories: Politics and Hypertechnologies. edited by Gabriel Brahm Jr. and Mark Driscoll. Boulder: Westview. Press Michael Taussig. Tactility and Distraction. Cultural Anthropology 6:2, 1991. Ann Friedberg. "Les Flaneurs/Flaneuse Du Mall." Window Shopping: Cinema and the Postmodern. University of California, 1994. Margaret Morse. "An Ontology of Everyday Distraction: The Freeway. The Mall, and Television." Mary Ann Doane. "Information, Crisis, Catastrophe." Patricia Mellancamp. "TV Time and Catastrophe, or Beyond the Pleasure Principle of Television." all in Logics of Television, edited by Patricia Mellancamp, Indiana, 1990. Elaine Scarry. "The Merging of Bodies and Artifacts in the Social Contract." Stuart Ewen. All Consuming Images: The Politics of Style in Contemporary Culture. Basic Books, 1988. Brenda Bright. "Remappings: Los Angeles Low Riders." George Marcus. "Middlebrow into Highbrow at the J. Paul Getty Trust, Los Angeles." in Looking High and Low: Art and Cultural Identity. edited by Brenda Jo Bright and Liza Bakewell. University of Arizona Press, 1995. William Pietz. "Fetishism and Materialism: The Limits of Theory in Marx." rem koolhaas. delirious new york. Susan Stewart. "Ceci Tuera Cela: Graffiti as Crime and Art." Crimes of Writing, Oxford, 1991. Arjun Appadurai and Carol Breckenridge. "Why Public Culture?" Public Culture, 1:1, 1988 Miriam Hansen. Forward. Oskar Negt and Alexander Kluge. Public Sphere and Experience. Jean and John Comaroff. "Millennial Capitalism: First Thoughts on a Second Coming" Public Culture 12: 2, 2000. Dilip Goankar. Toward New Imaginaries: An Introduction. Public Culture 14:1, 2002 Selections from Dilip Goankar and Benjamin Lee, eds. New Imaginaries (readings by Appadurai, Warner, Taylor, Gole, and Mbembe) Bruce Robbins. The Phantom Public Sphere.


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