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Latour and the Humanities

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In recent years, defenses of the humanities have tended to argue along predictable lines: the humanities foster empathy, the humanities encourage critical thinking, the humanities offer a counterweight to the cold calculations of the natural and social sciences. The essays in Latour and the Humanities take a different approach. Exploring the relevance of theorist Bruno Latour's work, they argue for attachments and entanglements between the humanities and the sciences while looking closely at the interests, institutions, and intellectual projects that shape the humanities within and beyond the university.

The collection, which is written by a group of highly distinguished scholars from around the world, is divided into two sections. In the first part, authors engage in depth with Latour's work while also rethinking the ties between the humanities and the sciences. Essays argue for greater attention to the nonhuman world, the urgency of climate change, and more nuanced views of universities as institutions. The second half of the volume contains essays that reflect on Latour's influence on the practices of specific disciplines, including art, the digital humanities, film studies, and political theory.

Inspiring conversation about the relevance of actor-network-theory for research and teaching in the humanities, Latour and the Humanities offers a substantial introduction to Latour's work while discussing the humanities without falling back on the genres of either the sermon or the jeremiad. This volume will be of interest to all those searching for fresh perspectives on the value and importance of humanistic disciplines and thought.

Contributors: David J. Alworth, Anders Blok, Claudia Breger, Dipesh Chakrabarty, Yves Citton, Steven Connor, Gerard de Vries, Simon During, Rita Felski, Francis Halsall, Graham Harman, Antoine Hennion, Casper Bruun Jensen, Bruno Latour, Heather Love, Patrice Maniglier, Stephen Muecke, Barbara Herrnstein Smith, Nigel Thrift, Michael Witmore

Introduction, by Rita Felski

I. What Do the Humanities Do?1. Stephen Muecke, An Ecology of Institutions: Recomposing the Humanities 002. Antoine Hennion, From ANT to Pragmatism: A Journey with Bruno Latour at the CSI 003. Graham Harman, Demodernizing the Humanities with Latour4. Heather Love, Care, Concern, and the Ethics of Description5. Anders Blok and Casper Bruun Jensen, Redistributing Critique6. Steven Connor, Decomposing the Humanities7. Dipesh Chakrabarty, Humanities in the Anthropocene: The Crisis of an Enduring Kantian Fable8. Yves Citton, Fictional Attachments and Literary Weavings in the Anthropocene9. Simon During, Are the Humanities Modern?10. Nigel Thrift, The University of Life

II. Latour and the Disciplines11. David J. Alworth, Critique, Modernity, Society, Agency: Matters of Concern in Literary Studies12. Claudia Breger, Cinematic Assemblies: Latour and Film Studies13. Michael Witmore, Latour, the Digital Humanities, and the Divided Kingdom of Knowledge14. Barbara Herrnstein Smith, Anthropotheology: Latour Speaking Religiously15. Gerard de Vries, Politics Is a ""Mode of Existence"": Why Political Theorists Should Leave Hobbes for Montesquieu 16. Patrice Maniglier, Art as Fiction: Can Latour's Ontology of Art Be Ratified by Art Lovers? (An Exercise in Anthropological Diplomacy17. Francis Halsall, Actor-Network Aesthetics: The Conceptual Rhymes of Bruno Latour and Contemporary Art

AfterwordLife among Conceptual Characters, by Bruno Latour


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