Fredric Jameson (Book acquired, 4.23.2015)


Fredric Jameson’s latest from Verso is The Ancients and the Postmoderns. Verso’s blurb:

High modernism is now as far from us as antiquity was for the Renaissance. Such is the premise of Fredric Jameson’s major new work in which modernist works, this time in painting (Rubens) and music (Wagner and Mahler), are pitted against late-modernist ones (in film) as well as a variety of postmodern experiments (from SF to The Wire, from “Eurotrash” in opera to Altman and East German literature): all of which attempt, in their different ways, to invent new forms to grasp a specific social totality. Throughout the historical periods, argues Jameson, the question of narrative persists through its multiple formal changes and metamorphoses.

4 thoughts on “Fredric Jameson (Book acquired, 4.23.2015)”

    1. You understand that this is why art theory and criticism means nothing to contemporary artists – (or anyone else for that matter) The words that they use like Modernism have become overdefined and meaningless. Before he wrote this book maybe he should have written a book about why Baroque is a first kind of modernism, because unless anybody, anybody buys that the rest of his argument seems to be built on sand on top of marbles. He could have just skipped the whole Baroque thing and gone straight to Wagner and Mahler. Maybe he needed a painter? I think the problem is that so many art historians and critics are desperate to figure out what happened after postmodernism to art – they don’t have a name to call art now, they don’t have a movement, they don’t have something to define and they are all scrambling to pull from the past to find something that attaches to now – Art has been so reactionary for so long I think that maybe there isn’t anything left to react to – what’s left? profanity? been there done than. nudity? yup? toilet humor? yup consumerism? yup government oppression? yawn violence? how do you want it? So – let’s connect baroque art to to to the wire let’s do that, we’ll figure out what art today means – it sounds like he’s grasping at straws. Sorry, looked at alot of art today, my brain is fried and this little blurb struck a nerve.


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