James Baldwin might be imagined as reaching his greatest level of popularity within this current decade. With the growth of social media activist movements like Black Lives Matter, which captures and catalyzes off a Baldwinian rage, and the publishing of works directly evoking Baldwin, his voice appears more pronounced between the years of 2013 and 2015. Scholars in Baldwin studies, along with strangers who were turned into witnesses of his literary oeuvre, have contributed to this renewed interest in Baldwin, or at least have been able to sharpen the significance of the phenomenon. Publications and performances highlight Baldwin’s work and how it prefigured developments in critical race and queer theories, while also demonstrating Baldwin’s critique as both prophetic and “disturbingly” contemporary. Emerging largely from Baldwin’s timelessness in social and political discourse, and from the need to conjure a figure to demystify the absurd American landscape, these interventions in Baldwin studies follow distinct trends. This essay examines the 2013–15 trends from four vantages: an examination of a return, with revision, to popular work by Baldwin; identifying Baldwin’s work as a contributor to theoretical and critical methodology; Baldwin and intertextuality or intervocality; and a new frontier in Baldwin studies.
Ernest L. Gibson
James Baldwin and Melanie Klein in the Context of Black Lives Matter
David W McIvor
Recent killings of unarmed black citizens are a fresh reminder of the troubled state of racial integration in the United States. At the same time, the unfolding Black Lives Matter protest movements and the responses by federal agencies each testify to a not insignificant capacity for addressing social pathologies surrounding the color line. In order to respond to this ambivalent situation, this article suggests a pairing between the work of James Baldwin and that of the psychoanalyst Melanie Klein. I will argue that we cannot fully appreciate the depths of what Baldwin called the “savage paradox” of race without the insights provided by Klein and object relations psychoanalysis. Conversely, Baldwin helps us to sound out the political significance of object relations approaches, including the work of Klein and those influenced by her such as Hanna Segal and Wilfred Bion. In conversation with the work of Baldwin, object relations theory can help to identify particular social settings and institutions that might allow concrete efforts toward racial justice to take root.
Passion and politics in the English Defence League
‘Loud and proud’: Politics and passion in the English Defence League is a study of grassroots activism in what is widely considered to be a violent Islamophobic and racist organisation.
The book uses interviews, informal conversations and extended observation at EDL events to critically reflect on the gap between the movement’s public image and activists’ own understandings of it. It details how activists construct the EDL, and themselves, as ‘not racist, not violent, just no longer silent’ inter alia through the exclusion of Muslims as a possible object of racism on the grounds that they are a religiously not racially defined group. In contrast activists perceive themselves to be ‘second-class citizens’, disadvantaged and discriminated by a ‘two-tier’ justice system that privileges the rights of ‘others’. This failure to recognise themselves as a privileged white majority explains why ostensibly intimidating EDL street demonstrations marked by racist chanting and nationalistic flag waving are understood by activists as standing ‘loud and proud’; the only way of ‘being heard’ in a political system governed by a politics of silencing.
Unlike most studies of ‘far right’ movements, this book focuses not on the EDL as an organisation – its origins, ideology, strategic repertoire and effectiveness – but on the individuals who constitute the movement. Its ethnographic approach challenges stereotypes and allows insight into the emotional as well as political dimension of activism. At the same time, the book recognises and discusses the complex political and ethical issues of conducting close-up social research with ‘distasteful’ groups.
Sport, globalization and the environment
Brad Millington and Brian Wilson
Golf is a major global industry. It is played by more than 60 million people worldwide, and there are more than 32 000 courses in 140 countries across the globe. Golf is a sport that has traditionally appealed to the wealthy and powerful in particular, though it attracts players and spectators from a wide range of demographics. Golf has also received criticism regarding its impact on the environment, particularly when it comes to the appropriation of land for golf course development and the use of water and pesticides in course management. The golf industry has, over time, responded to these and other concerns by stressing its capacity for recognizing and dealing with environmental problems. Yet there are reasons to be sceptical about the golf industry's environmental leadership – and, indeed, to be sceptical about corporate environmentalism in general. This book looks at the power relationships in and around golf, examining whether the industry has demonstrated such leadership on environmental matters that it should be trusted to make weighty decisions that have implications for public and environmental health. This is the first comprehensive study of the varying responses to golf-related environmental issues. It is based on extensive empirical work, including research into historical materials and interviews with stakeholders in golf such as course superintendents, protesters, and health professionals. The authors examine golf as a sport and as a global industry, drawing on and contributing to literatures pertaining to environmental sociology, global social movements, institutional change, corporate environmentalism and the sociology of sport.
Anarchist theory and practice in a global age
Edited by: Jonathan Purkis and James Bowen
This book attempts to convey the different sociological contexts for how contemporary anarchist theory and practice is to be understood. It concentrates on the issue of broadening the parameters of how anarchist theory and practice is conceptualized. The book compares the major philosophical differences and strategies between the classical period (what Dave Morland calls 'social anarchism') and the contemporary anti-capitalist movements which he regards as being poststructuralist in nature. It also documents the emergence of the now highly influential anti-technological and anti-civilisational strand in anarchist thought. This offers something of a challenge to anarchism as a political philosophy of the Enlightenment, as well as to other contemporary versions of ecological anarchism and, to some extent, anarcho-communism. The book further provides a snapshot of a number of debates and critical positions which inform contemporary anarchist practice. The specific areas covered offer unique perspectives on sexuality, education, addiction and mental health aspects of socialisation and how this can be challenged at a number of different levels. The fact that anarchism has largely premised its critique on a psychological dimension to power relations, not just a material one, has been an advantage in this respect. Ecological anarchism, which has been the driving force behind much contemporary anarchist theory and practice, has been committed to thinking about the relationships between people and 'nature' in new ways.
anarchism is equivalent to constructing a future society without the State. (See, for example, the classic statement by Malatesta from the 1890s (Malatesta, 1974).) In etymological terms, anarchy refers to the absence of rule or government. Therefore, when we talk of anarchy we generally talk of ‘a stateless society’ (Carter, 1993: 141). This chapter is not an attempt to resolve or settle the difficulties associated with defining anarchy or social anarchism. It will suggest that, when situated alongside the practices of new social movements associated with the recent
La gauche de la gauche
factors, in a context of rising inequalities and scepticism about the Socialists’ commitment to reform, help to explain what has given rise to the emergence of the autonomous groups and associations which make up the ‘social movement’, to which we now turn. The ‘social movement’ The literature on social movements generally stresses their emergence in two waves, the post-1968 liberation movements (gays, women, immigrant workers, ecologists) and the post-1981 movements typified by SOS Racisme. New social movements in general, the argument runs, are linked to the decline
The autonomous life?
. Mamadouh contends that the influence and impact of urban social movements is difficult to measure in terms of class conflict. Instead, these movements were directed towards enacting a vision of the city that challenged the types of municipal policies and the social norms of urban lifestyles at the time. Mamadouh investigates how urban social movements interpreted the city ideologically, their attempts to modify the built environment, and how their methods and tactics compared with each other. In Cracking
Greta Fowler Snyder
cooperation and ensuring enforcement. In this context, global social movements are especially important in the struggle against injustice. Such movements draw attention to transnational sources of injustice and put pressure on multiple governments to change their behaviour. They also influence and/or give greater legitimacy to international institutions that
Kevin Harrison and Tony Boyd
6/5/03 3:16 pm 310 Page 310 Understanding political ideas and movements Religion and politics Religion has always played a major part in politics. Marxists have been especially strong on recognising the crucial role of religion as a means of social control, of reinforcing the status quo in society. Indeed, many conservatives have claimed that religion is a vital and positive social ‘cement’, holding society together. Religious identity plays a very important role in the creation of the national identity of most countries. Judaism and Christianity, via the