Author: Bruce Robbins

The Hard Hat Riot of May 1970: A Slice of Non-Memoir

  The feminists of the 1970s, who pioneered the now classic idea that the personal is political, probably also devoted some attention to those of us who wish that our personal had been political, or more political. If so, I didn’t get the memo. But there must be many who would have to confess, with Nora Ephron, that we were wallflowers at the orgy. As we enter our 70s, not having missed the news about climate change and the general dimming of hopes for anything better than human survival, there comes a moment for retrospection, whether intro- or not....

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My Dive

[What follows is an excerpt from the unpublished memoir of American journalist, translator, and “dispatriate” Frederika Randall (1948-2020). The excerpt is narrated by her Italian husband, Virgilio.] This is a story about Frances, a fascinating and dear American woman, my companion: about how she came to fall three stories from a balcony in Rome and what you might call the collateral damage of empire she sustained during Cold War times. I met her in New York, back in the early Reagan years. Daniela had just packed up all her things and moved back to Italy with the kids, and...

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Stuart Hall and Marxism

The following was delivered as a talk at a roundtable on June 30, 2021, organized by the Stuart Hall Foundation and Duke University Press, to mark the publication by Duke of Gregor McLennan’s “Stuart Hall: Selected Writings on Marxism.” The event was moderated by Catherine Hall and also featured Brett St Louis and Angela McRobbie as well as Gregor McLennan.   Gregor McLennan describes Stuart Hall as a mediator. Hall “can best be appreciated,” he says, “as a peerless dialectical mediator… He mediated within Marxism—structuralism/ culturalism; economism/ideologism; class/ nonclass social forces—and he mediated between Marxism and various non- and...

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Opt Out

Call for submissions: send us your take — whether via poetry or prose — on what it means to opt out. To opt out of the cultural moment, the political order, the favored conventions of language … to opt out of a stifling love affair, or a soul-deadening daily routine … or even to opt out of life itself, or of one’s role in creating new life. What does it mean to opt out? Who is allowed to opt out? What does opting allow for? What freedom is on the other...

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