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History's Disquiet Modernity, Cultural Practice, and the Question of Everyday Life

by Harry Harootunian

  • ISBN: 9780231117944
  • ISBN10: 0231117949

History's Disquiet Modernity, Cultural Practice, and the Question of Everyday Life

by Harry Harootunian

  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Columbia Univ Pr
  • Publish date: 05/01/2000
  • ISBN: 9780231117944
  • ISBN10: 0231117949
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Description: Our understanding of the culture and geopolitics of the world around us has been characterized by a partitioning between an "inside" and an "outside" that has succeeded in producing categories that act as boundaries. Yet even as the postmodern academic community professes awareness of the capricious nature of such barriers, scholars regularly operate within the strictures implied. Contemporary history has shown that as these barriers become ever less logical, the meaning of modernity is thrown sharply into question.

In History's Disquiet, acclaimed historian Harry Harootunian calls attention to the boundarie that compartmentalize the world around us. In one of the first works to explore on equal footing the European and Japanese conceptions of modernity -- as imagined in the writings of Georg Simmel and Walter Benjamin, as well as ethnologist Yanagita Kunio and Marxist philosopher Tosaka Jun -- Harootunian seeks to expose the archaic nature of scholarly categories. In demystifying these rigid categories, he demonstrates how they can be escaped.

As elegantly written as it is controversial, History's Disquiet is a book that will be widely read and debated in a spectrum of fields ranging from postcolonial studies to intellectual history. It is both an invitation for rethinking intellectual boundaries and an invigorating affirmation that such boundaries can indeed be broken down.

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