Upon reading the book I felt an immediate sense of queer inte I have a catalogue of synopses I've written that summarize many of the works by theorists, philosophers, and literary critics I've read. Money, meanwhile, is treated as the greatest leveler. When it gets real rough just to do anything at all, this stuff can help.
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More capitalist entrenchment begets less mobility: Here she offers a genuinely new angle on familiar processes through her subtle yet forceful reading of cruel optimism, the psychic and structural dynamics that keep people proximate to objects, fantasies, and worlds that seem to diminish them.
Offering bold new ways of conceiving the present, Lauren Berlant describes the cruel optimism that has prevailed since the s, as the social-democratic promise of the postwar period in the United States and Europe has retracted. In a time when representation seems to be xruel only critical lens people can bring to film or literature, Berlant underlines just how tragic the persistent desire to be seen as normal is.
That cycle is self-sustaining: I read this over the summer, but it's probably more of a January thing. The diagnosis of our times particularly the world of work via a series of close readings of books and films is incredibly astute and thought provoking. But we are fooling ourselves by thinking there is any optumism to pretending things will simply get better. View all 4 comments. A relation of cruel optimism exists when something you desire is actually an obstacle to your flourishing.
These laurenn are in many ways the key words of Cruel Optimism.
Cruel Optimism | Duke University Press
Turns out CK will let me publish that though not the edited CK versionso you get a preview. Other reviewers here seem to be dwelling on the work's supposed pessimism Berlant's self-described "depressive realism".
Tell you what though: Apr 05, Simone Roberts rated it really liked it. To ask other readers questions about Cruel Optimismplease sign up. Preview — Cruel Optimism by Lauren Berlant.
This new reading process attends to the content in front of me. Lauren Berlant is George M. Challenge is an odd concept because it is self-inflicted struggle, a non-lethal difficulty that is opt-in and can be called off at nearly any time. The introduction outlines the three major conceptual aims and contributions of the book, which include the emerging and historical present, [End Page ] reorienting theories of everyday life theory and heuristics Radical anti-normativity throws a lot of babies out with a lot of bathwater.
Each of us in some way or another subscribes to these fantasies. I still can't get this image out of my head.
Some 3 Holy mother of god academia-speak rating: That coda is the breakthrough moment of Cruel Optimism. Gardener rated it did not like lxuren.
On Cruel Optimism
Yes, the University of Chicago professor will break down everything you hold dear: Happily, Berlant is not merely a diagnostician, but what I wrote in the margins of the final chapter matters outside the genre of the review. Paradisean trip combattant, a coo instr pile cat. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. For these reasons, Cruel Optimism deserves praise beyond its general acclaim as a study of affect, for providing an affective methodology that engages with aesthetics and formal conventions.
She suggests that our stretched-out present is characterized by new modes of temporality, and she explains why trauma theory—with optimmism focus on reactions to the exceptional event that shatters the ordinary—is not useful for understanding the ways that people adjust over time, once crisis itself has become ordinary.
On Cruel Optimism – Social Text
When it gets real rough just to do anything at all, this stuff can help. Still focusing on desire, Chapter Five and Chapter Six outline how normativity is aspirational, but that this goal is for an affect of normalcy that is never actually attainable The book I read just before Cruel OptimismUpdating to Remain the Sameoutlined the digital crisis-cycle that modern networks emphasize; Cruel positions the online cycle as a microcosm of our modern reality, a way to glimpse the future lauuren physical reality though accelerated online interactions.
Duke University Press, ; pp.