Introduction: Future, Heteronomy, Invention

James J. Bono, Tim Dean and Ewa Plonowska Ziarek

in A Time for the Humanities

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print November 2008 | ISBN: 9780823229192
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235063 | DOI:
Introduction: Future, Heteronomy, Invention

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This introductory chapter reflects on the future of the humanities with the help of an interdisciplinary group of renowned theorists and scholars including Deleuze, Freud, Lacan, Foucault, Kristeva, and Irigaray. It addresses questions such as: What notions of futurity, of the human, and of finitude underlie recurring anxieties about the humanities' future in our current geopolitical situation? How can we think about the unpredictable and unthought dimensions of praxis implicit in the very notion of futurity? What kind of agency is implied by future-oriented praxis? In what sense is such agency linked to heteronomy rather than to the autonomy of the subject? The essays in this book argue that the uncertainty of the future represents both an opportunity for critical engagement and a matrix for invention. Also discussed are philosophy, art and art history, visuality, political theory, criticism and critique, psychoanalysis, gender analysis, architecture, literature, art, political and social reform in Latin America, disposable populations, electronic textuality, and invention and accountability.

Keywords: futurity; humanities; invention; theorists; scholars; finitude; art history; political theory; architecture; literature

Chapter.  5796 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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