Charlie Harvey

May 2012 Reading

  • Frames of War, by Judith Butler

    Butler’s take on Guantanamo, Iraq and to an extent Abu Ghraib centres around the question of grievability. The question of what constitutes a recognizably human life is a powerful way to start thinking about State violence and war and what an effective left resistence might look like. Butler’s wonderfully dense and complex consideration of the philosophical implications of every nuance of the language of her argument are in turns poetic, insightful and inpenetrable. In the end her political vision seems rather tame given the radical rhetoric in which she wraps it, but reading her simply for her perceptive critical take on the complex ideological underpinnings of the world which surrounds and constructs us is always rewarding.

    2012-05-29 by Charlie Harvey
  • Anarchism and Political Modernity, by Nathan Jun

    Its worth reading Anarchism and Political Modernity simply for Jun’s wonderfully lucid explanations of the bases of Western political philosophy and how they interact with postmodern analyses. Jun’s central case is that, contrary to the analysis of Saul Newman or Todd May, "classical" anarchism, far from being essentialist or needing the insights of poststructural thinkers, is already one of the first postmodenisms. He makes a compelling case that anarchism's rejection of political modernity and in particular the notions of representation upon which both socialism and liberalism are founded in combination with its prefigurative principle of action allow it to escape "universalism and relativism in ethics, rationalism and scientism in epistemology, idealism and (vulgar) materialism in metaphysics, individualism and statism in politics". As such anarchist ideas represent perhaps the first coherent statement of the concerns to which poststructuralist and postmodern thinkers have consistently returned.

    2012-05-12 by Charlie Harvey
  • A Matter of Death and Life, by Andrey Kurkov

    My pal Simmie introduced me to Kurkov. His is a darkly surreal, amoral world, and this book continues that tradition. An absurd black comedy that is sharp and rather wonderful.

    2012-05-02 by Charlie Harvey


  • Be respectful. You may want to read the comment guidelines before posting.
  • You can use Markdown syntax to format your comments. You can only use level 5 and 6 headings.
  • You can add class="your language" to code blocks to help highlight.js highlight them correctly.

Privacy note: This form will forward your IP address, user agent and referrer to the Akismet, StopForumSpam and Botscout spam filtering services. I don’t log these details. Those services will. I do log everything you type into the form. Full privacy statement.