The Persistence of History examines how the moving image has completely altered traditional modes of historical thought and representation. Exploring a range of film and video texts, from The Ten Commandments to the Rodney King video, from the projected work of documentarian Errol Morris to Oliver Stone's JFK and Spielberg's Schindler's List, the volume questions the appropriate forms of media for making the incoherence and fragmentation of contemporary history intelligible.
In Japan, people often refer to August 15, 1945 as the end of "that war." But the duration of "that war" remains vague. At times, it refers to the fifteen years of war in the Asia-Pacific. At others, it refers to an imagination of the century long struggle between the East and the West that characterized much of the 19th century. This latter dramatization in particular reinforces longstanding Eurocentric and Orientalist discourses about historical development that presume the non-West lacks historical agency. Nearly 75 years since the nominal end of the war, Japan’s "history problem" – a term invoking the nation’s inability to come to terms with its imperial past – persists throughout Asia today. Going beyond well-worn clichés about the state’s use and abuse of discourses of historical modernity, Koyama shows how the inability to confront the debris of empire is tethered to the deferral of agency to a hegemonic order centered on the United States. The present is thus a moment one stitched between the disavowal of responsibility on the one hand, and the necessity of becoming a proper subject of history on the other. Behind this seeming impasse lay questions about how to imagine the state as the subject of history in a postcolonial moment – after grand narratives, after patriotism, and after triumphalism.
Author: Francisco Javier Buera
Release Date: 2010
"We quantify the role of financial frictions and the initial misallocation of resources in explaining development dynamics. Following a reform that triggers efficient reallocation of resources, our model economy with financial frictions converges slowly to the new steady state-it takes twice as long to cover half the distance to the steady state as the neoclassical growth model. Investment rates and total factor productivity start out low and rise over time. These model dynamics are endogenously determined by the extent of initial resource misallocation and the degree of financial frictions. We present data from post-war miracle economies on the evolution of macro aggregates, factor reallocation, and establishment size distribution, which support the aggregate and micro-level implications of our theory"--National Bureau of Economic Research web site.
Author: John C. Super
Release Date: 2006-08-21
In Religion and World History, distinguished authors John C. Super and Briane K. Turley examine the value of religion for interpreting the human experience in the past and present. They explore the elements of religion which best connect it to the cultural and political dynamics that have influenced history. Working within this framework, Super and Turley present three unifying themes: * the relationship between formal and informal religious beliefs, how these change through time, and how they are reflected in different cultures * the relationship between church and state, from theocracies to the repression of religion * the ongoing search for spiritual certainty, and the consequent splintering of core religious beliefs and the development of new ones. One of the few recent books to examine religion’s role in geo-political affairs, its unique approach enables the reader to grasp the many and complex ways in which religion acts upon and reacts to broader global processes.
Author: Ian Gordon
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
Release Date: 2017-02-13
Genre: Comics & Graphic Novels
After debuting in 1938, Superman soon became an American icon. But why has he maintained his iconic status for nearly 80 years? And how can he still be an American icon when the country itself has undergone so much change? Superman: Persistence of an American Icon examines the many iterations of the character in comic books, comic strips, radio series, movie serials, feature films, television shows, animation, toys, and collectibles over the past eight decades. Demonstrating how Superman’s iconic popularity cannot be attributed to any single creator or text, comics expert Ian Gordon embarks on a deeper consideration of cultural mythmaking as a collective and dynamic process. He also outlines the often contentious relationships between the various parties who have contributed to the Superman mythos, including corporate executives, comics writers, artists, nostalgic commentators, and collectors. Armed with an encyclopedic knowledge of Superman’s appearances in comics and other media, Gordon also digs into comics archives to reveal the prominent role that fans have played in remembering, interpreting, and reimagining Superman’s iconography. Gordon considers how comics, film, and TV producers have taken advantage of fan engagement and nostalgia when selling Superman products. Investigating a character who is equally an icon of American culture, fan culture, and consumer culture, Superman thus offers a provocative analysis of mythmaking in the modern era.
Author: Dennis Wrong
Release Date: 2017-07-12
Genre: Social Science
Definitions of human beings as "symbolic animals" emphasize our capacity to form theories and general laws that can be applied to common social experience. This is balanced by an equally strong will to define events and conditions that are particular to specific times, places, and individuals. In this volume, Dennis H. Wrong argues that the scientific standard of universal laws and propositions has only limited relevance to human historical phenomena. Wrong identifies the essential questions for social science as the place of nature and nurture in forming personality, the sources of variation in human conduct and culture, the causes of deviations from social norms, how human motivations are socially shaped and controlled to make society possible, and, finally, the causes of social change. Because successive generations of thinkers have given varying answers to these questions, no cumulative progress can be said to have occurred. Wrong argues that the unity of theory and research sought by American sociologists cannot be obtained in social theory. In terms of sociological practice, this has created a disparity between the canonical theories of Marx, Durkheim, and Weber, and the empirically oriented methodologies of current social research--especially questionnaires, fieldwork, and statistical research. Wrong attributes this disparity to postmodern skepticism about the potential of the social sciences to create a body of knowledge that might positively reshape human society. Between the large-scale theoretical constructs of classical theory and the overly particularistic tendencies associated with postmodernism, Wrong argues for a historically oriented approach emphasizing unforeseen, accidental agents as a foundation for modestly conceived theories. Wrong emphasizes that the capacity to avoid predictable, standardized responses, whether they are based on instinct or ingrained habit, is the source of human creativity. Homo sapiens is as m
Author: Josey G. Fisher
Release Date: 1991
This volume is a collection of fifteen first-person accounts of growing up during the Nazi era. The selections cover a broad range of personalities and circumstances. Included are testimonies from the daughter of an anti-Nazi German family, the son of a mixed marriage in Germany threatened with deportation, a German Gypsy who witnessed Mengele's experiments, a Polish Jewish girl saved by her teacher, a Prague teenager escaping to Denmark and Sweden, a Polish Jewish youth in communist Siberia, a partisan, an eleven-year-old in Auschwitz, a young Yiddish actress exiled to Tashkent, and a Polish Catholic child deported to work camps. Drawn from the Holocaust Oral History Archive of Gratz College, each testimony is a unique story of survival through defense, adaptation, and resilience. The introduction to the book, written by Professor Nora Levin, provides the historical background of the rise of fascism and Nazism in Germany and the social and political dislocations that ensued. Editor Josey Fisher integrates the testimonies into the framework of adolescent development in the preface. Brief introductions to each chapter set the historical framework and describe the unique set of obstacles challenging each child. The youth of the Holocaust were caught in the time of their growing. Their external world had real enemies and unspeakable danger at the same time that their physical, psychological, and social development were propelling them toward adulthood. Internal intensity was intertwined with external threat. . . . (from the preface). "Persistence of Youth" provides a unique perspective on child development and psychological issues and will be of value to researchers in these fields as well as historians and others concerned with the Holocaust.
Author: Robert M. Ryan
Publisher: Univ of Massachusetts Press
Release Date: 1998
Genre: Literary Collections
If, as George Gissing once wrote, to like Keats is a test of fitness for understanding poetry, then the essays collected in this volume suggest that literary criticism remains a lively and vigorous endeavour. Written by a broad range of prominent scholars - senior Romanticists as well as younger critics and major poets - the essays offer a fresh reevaluation of the nature and importance of John Keats's achievement. The idealistic aesthetic or humanistic hero admired by earlier generations of readers develops into a much richer, more complex image of the poet. The product of a continuing critical dialogue, this new Keats attests not only to his own enduring appeal but to the persistent vitality of poetry itself amid the distractions of a fragmented postmodern culture.
Author: Thomas Elsaesser
Release Date: 2012-05-22
Genre: Social Science
While Hollywood’s success – its persistence – has remained constant for almost one hundred years, the study of its success has undergone significant expansion and transformation. Since the 1960s, Thomas Elsaesser’s research has spearheaded the study of Hollywood, beginning with his classic essays on auteurism and cinephilia, focused around a director’s themes and style, up to his analysis of the "corporate authorship" of contemporary director James Cameron. In between, he has helped to transform film studies by incorporating questions of narrative, genre, desire, ideology and, more recently, Hollywood’s economic-technological infrastructure and its place within global capitalism. The Persistence of Hollywood brings together Elsaesser’s key writings about Hollywood filmmaking. It includes his detailed studies of individual directors (including Minnelli, Fuller, Ray, Hitchcock, Lang, Altman, Kubrick, Coppola, and Cameron), as well as essays charting the shifts from classic to corporate Hollywood by way of the New Hollywood and the resurgence of the blockbuster. The book also presents a history of the different critical-theoretical paradigms central to film studies in its analysis of Hollywood, from auteurism and cinephilia to textual analysis, Marxism, psychoanalysis, and post-industrial analysis.
Author: Rob Kroes
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
Release Date: 1992
Immigration and ethnicity have long been staples of American history and literature, yet ethnicity has rarely been explored as the complex process of acculturation and adaptation that it is. In an adept combination of theoretical analysis and narrative, Rob Kroes presents the story of Amsterdam, Montana, a small, century-old village in the Gallatin Valley. Through extensive use of archival material, interviews with community members, and several months of first-hand experience living there, Kroes depicts the village's struggles for survival, its development as an "American" community, and, most important, its ability to maintain a strong Dutch ethnicity and culture through its ties to the Christian Reformed church. The reader sees the community as a whole as it moves through time, developing its many forms of accommodation to the surrounding American environment. There is a pervasive sense of the religion-based internal stratification and strife which, in the end, have served to draw the community more closely together as a solidly ethnic enclave. Amsterdam, Montana, is in America, but not quite of it.
Author: Tony Eprile
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Release Date: 2004
In this humane yet savagely witty portrait of apartheid South Africa in its waning years, Tony Eprile renders his homeland's turbulent past with striking clarity. declared Eprile's "horrifying yet heartrendingly beautiful" prose to be "comparable to his fellow authors of Apartheid Andre Brink and Nadine Gordimer." As the novel builds to a harrowing conclusion, the protagonist, a veteran of the secret war in Angola and Namibia, is forced to appear before the Truth and Reconciliation Committee with astonishing results. Nobel Prize-winning author J. M. Coetzee calls "a story of coming to maturity in South Africa in the bad old days. Always warm-hearted, sometimes comic, ultimately damning." Reading group guide included.