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Latour and the Humanities

In recent years, defenses of the humanities have tended to argue along predictable lines: the humanities foster empathy, the humanities encourage critical thinking, the humanities offer a counterweight to the cold calculations of the natural and social sciences. The essays in Latour and the Humanities take a different approach. Exploring the relevance of theorist Bruno Latour's work, they argue for attachments and entanglements between the humanities and the sciences while looking closely at the interests, institutions, and intellectual projects that shape the humanities within and beyond the university.

The collection, which is written by a group of highly distinguished scholars from around the world, is divided into two sections. In the first part, authors engage in depth with Latour's work while also rethinking the ties between the humanities and the sciences. Essays argue for greater attention to the nonhuman world, the urgency of climate change, and more nuanced views of universities as institutions. The second half of the volume contains essays that reflect on Latour's influence on the practices of specific disciplines, including art, the digital humanities, film studies, and political theory.

Inspiring conversation about the relevance of actor-network-theory for research and teaching in the humanities, Latour and the Humanities offers a substantial introduction to Latour's work while discussing the humanities without falling back on the genres of either the sermon or the jeremiad. This volume will be of interest to all those searching for fresh perspectives on the value and importance of humanistic disciplines and thought.

Contributors: David J. Alworth, Anders Blok, Claudia Breger, Dipesh Chakrabarty, Yves Citton, Steven Connor, Gerard de Vries, Simon During, Rita Felski, Francis Halsall, Graham Harman, Antoine Hennion, Casper Bruun Jensen, Bruno Latour, Heather Love, Patrice Maniglier, Stephen Muecke, Barbara Herrnstein Smith, Nigel Thrift, Michael Witmore

About the Authors

Rita Felski is a William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor at the University of Virginia and a Niels Bohr Professor at the University of Southern Denmark. She is the author of The Limits of Critique. Stephen Muecke is a professor of creative writing in the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences at Flinders University and a fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. He is the coauthor of Reading the Country: Introduction to Nomadology.

Reviews

"The 'Latour' presented here is an intriguing network composed of diverse passions, concerns, inversions, colleagues, sermons, and fears. This collection amply demonstrates that his work offers a polyphonous, contentious, liberating, exasperating, and stimulating source of inspiration to that other amalgam, the humanities. Enjoy!"—Annemarie Mol, University of Amsterdam, author of The Body Multiple: Ontology in Medical Practice

"Bruno Latour is a protean thinker who has addressed the most crucial concerns of contemporary life, from networks to high technology to climate change. The essays in this volume innovatively apply Latour's insights to the humanities, exploring the current state of the field but also working to propose new directions."—Steven Shaviro, Wayne State University, author of Discognition

"Can the humanities still matter in a world of climate change and technological disruption? Can they wean themselves from the genteel (if angst-ridden) comforts of cultural critique? These accomplished and enlivening essays address these and other timely questions, making the case that Bruno Latour shows us paths and risks worth taking."—William Paulson, University of Michigan, author of Literary Culture in a World Transformed: A Future for the Humanities

"This excellent introduction to Latour's work fully embraces its adventurous quality. Bringing together leading scholars from across disciplinary boundaries, this book draws inspiration from Latour's art of interpretation to re-activate scholarship as a way of engaging with today's great challenges of ecological crisis, digital transformation, and economic turmoil."—Noortje Marres, Centre for Interdisciplinary Methodologies, University of Warwick, author of Material Participation: Technology, the Environment and Everyday Publics

The Johns Hopkins University Press

9781421438900 : latour-and-the-humanities-felski-muecke
Paperback / softback
488 Pages
$34.95 USD
9781421438917 : latour-and-the-humanities-felski-muecke
Electronic book text
488 Pages
$34.95 USD
9781421439211 : latour-and-the-humanities-felski-muecke
Hardback
488 Pages
$94.95 USD

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Comparison

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