Book Search:  

 

 
Google full text of our books:

bookjacket

The Shape of the Signifier:
1967 to the End of History
Walter Benn Michaels

Paperback | 2006 | $23.95 / £16.95 | ISBN: 9780691126180
232 pp. | 6 x 9 | 6 halftones.
| SHOPPING CART

eBook | ISBN: 9781400849598 |
Our eBook editions are available from these online vendors

Reviews | Table of Contents
Introduction [HTML] or [PDF] pdf-icon

The Shape of the Signifier is a critique of recent theory--primarily literary but also cultural and political. Bringing together previously unconnected strands of Michaels's thought--from "Against Theory" to Our America--it anatomizes what's fundamentally at stake when we think of literature in terms of the experience of the reader rather than the intention of the author, and when we substitute the question of who people are for the question of what they believe.

With signature virtuosity, Michaels shows how the replacement of ideological difference (we believe different things) with identitarian difference (we speak different languages, we have different bodies and different histories) organizes the thinking of writers from Richard Rorty to Octavia Butler to Samuel Huntington to Kathy Acker. He then examines how this shift produces the narrative logic of texts ranging from Toni Morrison's Beloved to Michael Hardt and Toni Negri's Empire. As with everything Michaels writes, The Shape of the Signifier is sure to leave controversy and debate in its wake.

Review:

"Michaels's absorbing new book swims against the critical stream with a brilliance and originality unmatched this side of Slavoj Zizek."--Henry Staten, Modernism/modernity

"[This] book is not scholarship, criticism, or theory. It is a brazen call for the return to ideology."--Lindsay Waters, Chronicle of Higher Education

"[W]hat makes this book compelling . . . is his central thesis: that the apparent diversity of the marketplace of ideas, as in the marketplace of commodities, conceals fundamental uniformity (so many choices in the cereal aisle, so few in the voting booth)."--Robin J. Sowards, The Minnesota Review

Table of Contents:

Acknowledgments vii
Introduction: The Blank Page 1
One: Posthistoricism 19
The End of History 19
Political Science Fictions 26
Partez au vert/Go on the green 41
The Shape of the Signifier 51
The End of Theory 66
Two: Prehistoricism 82
rocks 82
and stones 105
and trees 118
Three: Historicism 129
Remembering 129
Reliving 140
Dismembering 149
Forgetting 158
Coda: Empires of the Senseless 169
Notes 183
Index 213

This book has been translated into:

  • Japanese

Subject Areas:

Shopping Cart:

  • For ebooks:

Our eBook editions are available
from these online vendors:

  • Barnes & Noble Nook Store
  • Google Play eBook Store
  • Kno eBook Store
  • Kobo eBook Store
  • Many of our ebooks are available through
    library electronic resources including these platforms:

  • Books at JSTOR
  • Ebrary
  • Ebook Library
  • EBSCO Ebooks
  • MyiLibrary
  • Dawsonera (UK)

  • Shopping Cart:

    • For hardcover/paperback orders:

      For hardcover/paperback orders in the United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, and Australia

      Paperback: $23.95 ISBN: 9780691126180

      For hardcover/paperback orders in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and India

      Paperback: £16.95 ISBN: 9780691126180

      Prices subject to change without notice

      File created: 4/17/2014

    Questions and comments to: webmaster@press.princeton.edu
    Princeton University Press

    New Book E-mails
    New In Print
    PUP Blog
    Videos/Audios
    Princeton APPS
    Sample Chapters
    Subjects
    Series
    Catalogs
    Textbooks
    For Reviewers
    Class Use
    Rights
    Permissions
    Ordering
    Recent Awards
    Princeton Shorts
    Freshman Reading
    PUP Europe
    About Us
    Contact Us
    Links
    F.A.Q.
    PUP Home


    Bookmark and Share
    Send me emails
    about new books in:
    Comparative Literature
    American Literature
    More Choices
    Email:
    Country:
    Name: