Asia and hormones

Max Sawicky sawicky at
Tue Jun 23 07:38:09 PDT 1998

Quoth Mme. Y:

<Max S, Eric Alterman, etc. use 'pomo' and 'identity politics' interchangeably because doing so helps them to dismiss both as matters of culture, symbols, discourse, etc. It's much more difficult--even for left conservatives--to assert that struggles against job discrimination, sexual harassment, hate crimes, etc., all of which have unmistakable material consequences, are of no importance, merely cultural nonsense, _without_ revealing their true colors.>>

NOBODY said that. I said POMO and ID politics were nonsense, though in a few more words than that. Can't you criticize something without reducing it to caricature first?

Note the issue here is not politics vs. culture either. I could imagine and can cite some effective cultural radicalism. Some of LP's stuff on the 'cultural front' is relevant here, though he often reads more into the stuff than it deserves (e.g., I dig Frank Sinatra, playing one of his CD's this very moment, but "one of us"? I think not. At the most an important liberal for a good part of his life.) I mentioned before that years ago I read some Jameson and enjoyed it; I did not, however, confuse lit-crit with political work.

>I'll bet there aren't too many folks from the econ or poli sci departments

<<It is understandable if the lit + theory crowd are more progressive, generally speaking, than scholars in econ + poli sci. After all, intellectual production in the econ + poli sci departments is much more tightly wedded to the interests of capital.>>

"I'll bet" . . . "It is understandable if . . . "

Anybody have any facts to offer in this matter?

One could also argue that serious radical types are more drawn to econ and poli sci and avoid overtly anti-political Judy Butler-type offerings.

In my undergrad days the radicals went into the history dept and avoided econ and 'sosh' because that's where the progressive profs were to be found (Rutgers: Genevese, Susman, Lloyd Gardner, etc.) Had little to do with the discipline in question.


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