The Johannesburg Salon, Volume 8

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Volume 8 of The Johannesburg Salon is now live. Curated by Ayana Smythe (University of California, Santa Barbara), Megan Jones (University of Stellenbosch), Leigh-Ann Naidoo (University of the Witwatersrand) and Achille Mbembe (University of the Witwatersrand), it captures the form and spirit of “Archives of the Non-Racial”, the Mobile Workshop organized in 2014 by The Johannesburg Workshop in Theory and Criticism (JWTC) and the Seminar in Experimental Critical Thought (SECT) of the University of California Humanities Research Institute.

Current features include: Angela Davis on her life in the struggle against racism; Achille Mbembe on the dream of a world free from the burden of race; Ruha Benjamin on what we owe each other, Joshua Williams on the sort of community envisioned by the first-person plural “we”; Casey Golomski on memories of Apartheid-era Swaziland; Jorge Campos on reading John Berger from the back of the bus; Pule Welch on the idea of the human race; Kirk Sides on anti-racism and the ethics of listening; Nicky Falkof on extracts from an abortive travelogue, written in the style of Hunter S. Thompson; handwritten notes by Fredo Rivera; Helen Douglas on why the wheels in her head go round and round; Josslyn Luckett on the chronicles of a comic mulatta; Tania Lizarazo on moving utopia; Simon Abramowitsch his notes from Berkeley to South Africa; Tana Nolethu Forrest’s photo essay on affective journeying; Tjasa Kancler’s documentary video; texts and images by Naadira Patel; Sarah Godsell’s notebook as a holding space for thought and emotion; Federico Navarrete on metaphors of racialization and sexuality in the Americas; Danai Mupotsa’s Qunu poems; Ghassan Hage’s handwritten notes; Roberta Estrela D’Alva’s poems; Kelly Gillespie on the bus as method and Sharad Chari on how to get off the bus.

Decolonizing the Transgender Imaginary

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Aren Aizura, Marcia Ochoa, Salvador Vidal-Ortiz, Trystan Cotton, Carsten Balzer/Carla LaGata, special issue editors

TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly, Volume 1, Issue 3
Duke University Press, 2014

What is at stake in acknowledging transgender studies’ Anglophone roots in the global North and West? What kinds of politics might emerge from challenging the assumption that biological sex—or the categories “man” and “woman”—is stable and self-evident across time, space, and culture? This collection asks how trans scholarship can decolonize, rather than reproduce, dominant imaginaries of sexuality and gender.

The big prison. Storys of harraga

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Prisons fulfil central political and economic functions. They are industrial complexes that generate high profits, and at the same time they are internment camps for those not wanted in this society. Numerous groups of persons unwilling or unable to cope with the demands of late capitalism in the global North are affected by imprisonment.

Migrants are one of the most important and largest groups of persons imprisoned. For them the “small prison” is a part and a condensed expression of the big prison: this is the society in which they live, but are systematically prevented from participating in. Both the big and the small prisons individualize and moralize social problems, responding with radical exclusion.

This webjournal is part of a bigger project in the framework of WienWoche, “About borders and walls. Migration and Prison”, led by Hor 29 Novembar.

The Johannesburg Salon, Volume 7

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The publication of the next volume of the Johannesburg Salon. Volume 7 centres on a collection of essays convened for Achille Mbembe’s African Future Cities Seminar, held at Harvard University in Autumn of last year. Edited by Stephanie Bosch Santana, the pieces explore the continent’s diverse urbanisms with an eye towards future trajectories of inventiveness, fortification, resilience and segregation.

In the Editorial section, artist Raimi Gbadamosi remembers the late Stuart Hall, Ashleigh Harris discusses style in recent diasporic African fiction, Helena Chavez Mac Gregor explores emergent political formations in Mexico and elsewhere, Lewis Gordon ruminates on the philosophical blues, Jonathan Klaaren reflects on the limits of the South African legal system and Ellison Tjirera makes a case for Windhoek’s city-ness. Catherine Portevin interviews Achille Mbembe (in French) about how his book Critique de la Raison Negre draws on the theories of Frantz Fanon and others to enter into dialogue with Immanuel Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason. The AFC symposium is complemented by Bregtje van der Haak’s exclusive interview with Rem Koolhaas, in which the architect meditates upon the meanings and possibilites of his Lagos Project, now fifteen years old.

e-misférica 11.1: Decolonial Gesture

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Jill Lane, Marcial Godoy-Anativia and Macarena Gómez Barris

Volume 11 | Issue 1 | 2014

Decolonial gesture is: cuir. Transfeminist, Postpornographic. The textual shift from queer to cuir is, says Sayak Valencia, a gesture of “sexual dissidence and its geopolitical and epistemic displacement toward the south.” Decolonial gesture is: CUIR FAT POWER! with artist Alejandra Rodríguez, aka La Bala. It is Post-sexual with artist Katia Sepúlveda, whose 2007 work of that name offers a silicone dildo in a frypan, melting very slowly over low heat. The challenge to patriarchy pictured is both radical and glacial: the image of the upright penis melting on a frypan—a place of feminized domesticity par excellence—images the demise of patriarchy and also insists on the very slow, continuous process of social change. Its praxis as image is confrontational, oppositional: a bold portrait of feminism’s threat to patriarchy. Its praxis as durational performance is transformative: over time, the antagonism between patriarchy and transfeminism dissolves.

Decolonial gesture is, then, ¡transmarikaputabollomestizxmigranteprecarix!

Decoloniality and Crisis

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A JCRT Special Edition, Winter 2014
Edited by Nikolay Karkov and Jeffrey W. Robbins

The attentive reader might ask: why a special issue on decoloniality and crisis? What is decoloniality, what do we mean by crisis, and why pair them together? The reason is simple (at least in our eyes): we see decoloniality and crisis as arguably the two key terms/processes/realities of our new millennium, which, tellingly, seem to have to come to fruition at roughly the same time. Just as the new century, certainly post-9/11, was starting to move away from the rhetoric of the “end of history” to one of a “clash of civilizations,” of permanent instability and conflict (i.e. crisis), so also an explicitly decolonial perspective was starting to gain ground, at least among radical academics and activists, primarily in the U.S., the Caribbean, and Latin America. The near simultaneous emergence of (in Walter Mignolo’s words) a “grammar of decoloniality” and (a new sense and dimensions of) crisis needs to give us a pause. Perhaps reading them side by side can be mutually illuminating, as in a sort of dialectic, whereby the mutual confrontation of the two realities adds further layers of complexity to each one […]

Journal Crisis and Critique #1

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DEMOCRACY AND REVOLUTION, Volume 1, Issue 1, 2014
Edited by Henrik Jøker Bjerre & Agon Hamza

The first issue of the philosophical journal Crisis and Critique is now available. The first issue deals with Democracy and Revolutions. It is available online in PDF format:

We live in the time of crisis, even a double crisis: a crisis of the Left or Marxism, and a crisis of the capitalist mode of production itself. That is to say, on top of our list of current uncertainties – ideological, political and economic, we should add ‘theoretical’. We do not have a theory of the present. In this regard, the aim of this journal is to critically examine and comprehend not only the existing conjunctures, but also the possibilities of reinventing the idea of radical emancipation, under the name of Communism.

The Johannesburg Salon, Volume 6

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Edited by Achille Mbembe & Megan Jones

Participants: Lara Pawson, Zarah Hussain, Arjun Appadurai, Filip De Boeck, Comaroff & Ker-Shing, Jarad Zimbler, Marko Stamenkovic, Morris, et al., Kelly Gillespie, Françoise Vergès, Yara El-Ghadban, THE ZONE 2, Danny Hoffman, Candace Feit, Francois Laso Chenut, Achille Mbembe.

“IDENTITIES” Journal Vol 10 / No. 1 – 2

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Short Description of current edition
ISSHS is proud to announce the issuing of the 10th volume (No. 1-2) of the Journal for Gender, Politics and Culture “Identities.”

“Identities” vol.10 is available for free download or print on demand.


No1 Guest editor: Marina GRŽINIĆ
Science, Media, Necropolitics and Bastard Trans-feminism(s)

No2 Edited by Katerina KOLOZOVA
Of the Possibility of Immanent Revolt as Theory and Political Praxis

Book reviews of the latest publications by Simon O’Sallivan, Anthony Paul Smith, Clayton Crockett

Queer Studies and the Crises of Capitalism

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Special Issue Editor(s): Jordana Rosenberg, Amy Villarejo
GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies, Vol 18, Issue 1 (2012)

Extending the recent rapprochement among queer studies, Marxist theory, and political economics, this timely issue responds to the current crisis of capitalism. Contributors consider how methodologies of queer studies are specially poised to reveal the global, historical, and social dimensions of capitalist economic relations. Using queer hermeneutical tools in combination with globalization studies, secularization studies, and queer-of-color critique, contributors examine global economic history and the ideological collusion of capitalist production and biological reproduction. With a special emphasis on the regulation and policing of sexuality, the issue explores the assertion that capitalism is only made possible by systems of racial, sexual, and national exploitation, and recuperation from periods of crisis depends on the increasingly violent reassertion of those forms of exploitation.