Some theoretical differences between structuralism and post-structuralism
Is post-structuralism a continuation and development of structuralism or a form of rebellion against it? In one important sense it is the latter, since a very effective way of rebelling is to accuse your predecessors of not having the courage of their convictions. Thus post-structuralists accuse structuralists of not following through the implications of the views about language on which their intellectual system is based. As we saw, one of structuralism's characteristic views is the
One of the pulsions that led me to launch this study is the naively ethical
feeling that we cannot let state technocrats continue like that, in a state
of total civic irresponsibility, and that it would be intolerable and unconscionable for social scientists not to intervene, with all due awareness
of the limitations of their discipline.
If, as Bachelard says, ‘every chemist must fight the alchemist within’,
every sociologist must fight the social prophet within that his public
asks him to incarnate.
Pierre Bourdieu and
The problems with poststructuralism
Feminism in the wilderness
Poststructuralist theory is the pre-eminent discourse of alterity in our time. It
offers a language through which to explore the mechanisms which silence and
violate the ‘others’ of dominant regimes. It has unmasked a benign-seeming
liberal humanism in order to critique the totalising grip of the capitalist worldsystem for which it provides ideological support. Poststructuralism is held by
many to be a means through which the sacred is reinhabiting the cultural order.
During the 1980s and 1990s controversies raged around history and postmodernism, and history and poststructuralism. While these theories developed from the 1960s, initially they were used mainly by literary theorists. The 1980s engagement of historians with poststructuralism was referred to as the ‘cultural turn’, and this began as an involvement mainly with the linguistic theories. As the ‘cultural turn’ overtook the social histories prominent from the middle of the century, historians worked hard to put the new cultural theory into practice although some
Theory often eclipses the text, just as the moon's shadow obscures the sun in an eclipse, so that the text loses its own voice and begins to voice theory. This book provides summaries or descriptions of a number of important theoretical essays. It commences with an account of the 'liberal humanism' against which all newer critical approaches to literature, broadly speaking, define themselves. The book suggests a useful form of intensive reading, which breaks down the reading of a difficult chapter or article into five stages, as designated by the letters 'SQRRR': Survey, Question, Read, Recall, and Review. It explains the rise of English studies by indicating what higher education was like in England until the first quarter of the nineteenth century. The book talks about the Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure, Roland Barthes, and Jacques Derrida. It lists some differences and distinctions between structuralism and post-structuralism under the four headings: origins, tone and style, attitude to language, and project. Providing a clear example of deconstructive practice, the book then describes three stages of the deconstructive process: the verbal, the textual, and the linguistic. It includes information on some important characteristics of literary modernism practiced by various writers, psychoanalytic criticism, feminist criticism and queer theory. The book presents an example of Marxist criticism, and discusses the overlap between cultural materialism and new historicism, specific differences between conventional close reading and stylistics and insights on narratology. It covers the story of literary theory through ten key events.
Every piece of historical writing has a theoretical basis on which evidence is selected, filtered, and understood. This book explores the theoretical perspectives and debates that are generally acknowledged to have been the most influential within the university-led practice of history over the past century and a half. It advises readers to bear in mind the following four interlinked themes: context, temporal framework, causation or drivers of change, and subjectivities. The book outlines the principles of empiricism, the founding epistemology of the professional discipline, and explores the ways in which historians have challenged and modified this theory of knowledge over the past century and a half. It then focuses upon three important dimensions of historical materialism in the work of Marxist historians: the dialectical model at the basis of Marx's grand narrative of human history; the adaptations of Marxist theory in Latin America; and the enduring question of class consciousness. The use of psychoanalysis in history, the works of Annales historians and historical sociology is discussed next. The book also examines the influence of two specific approaches that were to be fertile ground for historians: everyday life and symbolic anthropology, and ethnohistory. The roles of narrative, gender history, radical feminism, poststructuralism and postcolonial history are also discussed. Finally, the book outlines the understandings about the nature of memory and remembering, and looks at key developments in the analysis and interpretation of oral histories and oral traditions.
In 1796 a German politico-philosophical manifesto proclaims the 'highest act of reason' as an 'aesthetic act'. The ways in which this transformation relates to the development of some of the major directions in modern philosophy is the focus of this book. The book focuses on the main accounts of the human subject and on the conceptions of art and language which emerge within the Kantian and post-Kantian history of aesthetics. Immanuel Kant's main work on aesthetics, the 'third Critique', the Critique of Judgement, forms part of his response to unresolved questions which emerge from his Critique of Pure Reason and Critique of Practical Reason. The early Romantics, who, after all, themselves established the term, can be characterized in a way which distinguishes them from later German Romanticism. The 'Oldest System Programme of German Idealism', is a manifesto for a new philosophy and exemplifies the spirit of early Idealism, not least with regard to mythology. The crucial question posed by the Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling of the System of Transcendental Idealism (STI) is how art relates to philosophy, a question which has recently reappeared in post-structuralism and in aspects of pragmatism. Despite his undoubted insights, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel's insufficiency in relation to music is part of his more general problem with adequately theorising self-consciousness, and thus with his aesthetic theory. Friedrich Schleiermacher argues in the hermeneutics that interpretation of the meaning of Kunst is itself also an 'art'. The book concludes with a discussion on music, language, and Romantic thought.
The massive expansion of global aviation, its insatiable demand for airport capacity, and its growing contribution to carbon emissions, makes it a critical societal problem. Alongside traditional concerns about noise and air pollution, and the disruption of local communities, airport politics has been connected to the problems of climate change and peak oil. Yet it is still thought to be a driver of economic growth and connectivity in an increasingly mobile world. The Politics of Airport Expansion in the UK provides the first in-depth analysis of the protest campaigns and policymaking practices that have marked British aviation since the construction of Heathrow Airport. Grounded in documentary analysis, interviews and policy texts, it constructs and employs poststructuralist policy analysis to delineate the rival rhetorical and discursive strategies articulated by the coalitions seeking to shape public policy. Focusing on attempts by New Labour to engineer an acceptable policy of ‘sustainable aviation’, the book explores its transformation into a ‘wicked policy issue’ that defies a rational and equitable policy solution. It details the challenges posed to government by the rhetoric of scientific discourse and expert knowledge, and how the campaign against the third runway at Heathrow turned local residents, the perpetual ‘losers’ of aviation expansion, into apparent ‘winners’. It concludes by evaluating the challenges facing environmentalists and government in the face of concerted pressures from the aviation industry to expand. This book will appeal to scholars and researchers of environmental policy and politics, poststructuralist political theory, social movements, and transport studies.
within political economy fail to recognise the ideational
realm as a sphere of agency. The chapter will argue that ideology enables this
First, however, it surveys the main forms of ideational analysis influential
within political economy: constructivism, post-structuralism and neoGramscianism. Constructivism is an interpretivist approach. Its origins are in
sociology; it became influential among political economists following John
Ruggie’s work on the liberal norms embedded in the Bretton Woods institutions. Post-structuralism can also be classified as
The original aim of this book, when it was conceptualized as a doctoral
thesis, was to trace the borders of an insurrectionary canon through anarchism and poststructuralism, concluding at modern insurrectionary theory.
I hypothesized that the High Theory forebears, such as Tiqqun and Bonanno,
inform the ideological framework of attackers. After spending several years
surveying the literature produced by the anarchists of praxis, the contemporary urban guerrillas, I have observed that, in fact, the communiqué
corpus does not demonstrate any strongly central