By Lee Quinby
As the 12 months 2000 looms, heralding a brand new millennium, apocalyptic inspiration abounds-and no longer simply between spiritual radicals. In politics, technological know-how, philosophy, pop culture, and feminist discourse, apprehensions of the top seem in photos of cultural decline and concrete chaos, forecasts of the tip of background and ecological devastation, and visions of a brand new age of positive expertise or a gender-free utopia. there's, Lee Quinby contends, a threatening "regime of fact" winning within the United States-and this regime, with its enforcement of absolute fact and morality, imperils democracy. In Anti-Apocalypse, Quinby deals a strong critique of the millenarian rhetoric that pervades American tradition. In doing so, she develops ideas for resisting its tyrannies.
Drawing on feminist and Foucauldian conception, Quinby explores the advanced courting among energy, fact, ethics, and apocalypse. She exposes the ramifications of this dating in components as assorted as jeanswear journal ads, the Human Genome venture, modern feminism and philosophy, texts by way of Henry Adams and Zora Neale Hurston, and radical democratic activism. by way of bringing jointly this type of wide selection of issues, Quinby exhibits how apocalypse weaves its means via an enormous community of probably unrelated discourses and practices. Tracing the deployment of strength via platforms of alliance, sexuality, and know-how, Quinby unearths how those strength relationships produce conflicting modes of subjectivity that create chances for resistance. She promotes various severe stances—genealogical feminism, an ethics of the flesh, and "pissed criticism"—as demanding situations to apocalyptic claims for absolute fact and common morality. Far-reaching in its implications for social and cultural idea in addition to for political activism, Anti-Apocalypse will interact readers around the cultural spectrum and problem them to confront the most sophisticated and insidious orthodoxies of our day.
Lee Quinby is affiliate professor of English and American experiences at Hobart and William Smith schools. She is the writer of Freedom, Foucault, and the topic of the United States (1991) and coeditor (with Irene Diamond) of Feminism and Foucault: Reflections on Resistance (1988).
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Additional resources for Anti-Apocalypse: Exercises in Genealogical Criticism
Nor is it necessarily the case that fashion become a foundation for genetic medicine. The danger that I am concerned with here is that which occurs when eugenics and fashion gain apocalyptic momentum within the discourses and practices of genetic science and popular culture to produce the social reality of eu(jean)ics. On the threshold of the nineties, the United States government announced the launching of the Human Genome Project, with a funding of $3 billion over 15 years through government and private sources.
First of all, postmodernist simulation is neither completely unified nor centrally controlled—hence the rationale for acknowledging the Baudrillardian insight of pushing a system to its limits. Second, late-capitalist appropriation is a sign of radical resistance's impact—that's why the second strategy of ongoing reappropriation makes sense. And, third, it is vital to see that both the hegemonic, fashioned subjectivity of late capitalism and the counterhegemonic subjectivity of self-stylization are made possible by the material conditions of the present day.
In fact, I am arguing that such a cleansing is not possible —nor is it entirely desirable. As I have already pointed out, in the West generally, and in the United States especially, apocalyptic thought has always run deep and wide. Feminism has always found itself struggling on behalf of women in the context of masculinist apocalyptic discourse. To some extent, feminism must meet apocalypse on its own ground in order to be heard. And let's face it—feminist apocalypse is rhetorically powerful and has moved women to social action.