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National Global Imaginaries journal articles


Beyond post-feminism – McRobbie – 2011 – Public Policy Research


Outlining the terms of a ‘new sexual contract’, Angela McRobbie traces the trajectory of feminism and ‘sophisticated anti-feminism’ across the last two decades of political and cultural change.

Recentering Political Theory: The Promise of Mobile Locality


“In this post-universalist era, the idea of providing guidance for culturally different communities and individuals is rightly condemned as imperialist. Yet this very recognition of cultural limitations ironically encourages further Eurocentrism: fearful of making imperialist claims about political life that apply to all, many contemporary theorists carefully qualify the reach of the problems they examine and the applicability of the normative theories they propose. How may this vicious cycle be truncated? The emerging field of comparative political theory joins postcolonial studies, feminism, and subaltern studies to suggest that more sensitively calibrated forms of inclusion may deparochialize our political thinking, without replicating the homogenizing universalism of earlier centuries. Painfully aware that they are situated within the privileged cultural frames of the modern West, comparative political theorists identify their struggle in terms of understanding differently situated others amid power disparities created by colonialism, American hegemony, and the global flow of capital.”

Special Collection: The ethics of disconnection in a neo-liberal age – Introduction


“Scholars with Foucault in their arsenal have long understood how neoliberalism is more than simply political and economic policies that advocate universalizing market principles partially through deregulation and privatization. They realize that neoliberal policies also presuppose neoliberal selves—selves that consciously and reflexively see themselves as balancing alliances, responsibility, and risk through a mean-ends calculus (see Brown 2006, Cruikshank 1999, Harvey 2005, Rose 1990). David Harvey (2005:42), among others, argues that shifts from liberal economic policies to neoliberal policies are necessarily accompanied by relatively successful efforts to promote new conceptions of what it means to be an individual and an agent. This literature has largely focused on how selves are now expected to discipline themselves according to neoliberal logics and, in particular, how people should take themselves to be a bundle of skill sets which navigate responsibility and risk in a world that putatively operates always by market principles (Cruikshank 1999; Freeman 2007; Maurer 1999; O’Malley 1996; Rankin 2001; Rose 1990, 1996; Urciuoli 2008). The self is not only a bundle of skills from this perspective, the neoliberal self is also a bundle of alliances with an underlying goal of multiplying skills and alliances as much as possible. Yet the current moment has revealed precisely how unrealistic this vision of the self is—out of necessity, alliances must be cut as well as nurtured. The global economic crisis has required new interest not just in how neoliberal rhetorics are used to discipline selves, corporations, and nation-states, but also the ways in which neoliberalism shapes disconnection. In this special issue, we focus on this less explored area in which neoliberal perspectives are re-imagining the self—how the neoliberal self is expected to manage alliances as they end.”

Australian Trials of Trauma: The Stolen Generations in Human Rights, Law, and Literature


  • “In recent years, there have been numerous calls for the field of trauma studies to expand beyond its European and North American origins. It is especially important, as the insights of trauma theory are extended to a wider range of geopolitical sites and conflicts and into resistant fields such as law, that critics attend to the ways in which the discourse of trauma travels, how it is used or resisted in specific national or local contexts, and with what cultural and political effects. To explore these issues, I offer a case study of Australian responses to the Stolen Generations in human rights, law, and literature—fields in which trauma theory has significant purchase. The term “Stolen Generations” refers to children of mixed descent who were removed from their Indigenous mothers and communities with the aim of assimilating them into white Australian culture. Children were sent to institutions run by churches or government missions, where they received limited education and were trained as domestics or station hands. Removal typically curtailed the children’s relations with Indigenous family and culture, since they were prevented from speaking their language and participating in cultural traditions. Many children faced difficulties integrating into white Australian society; they and their mothers often experienced lifelong feelings of loss.”

    Eurozine – Unreliable narrators – Wolfram Kaiser Witness accounts and the institutional…


    “”Narrative tolerance” has encouraged an historiographic preference for witness accounts within European cultural institutions. Often, however, narrative authority continues to work beneath a blandly affirmative surface. Questions of reliability aside, is a witness-based history even able to fulfil the necessary task of narrating Europe’s political identity?”

    Eurozine – Racism in a post-racial Europe – Alana Lentin


    “The discrediting of the category of race in post-war European societies did not abolish racism: officially endorsed cultural relativism perpetuated Eurocentricism while dismissing racism as the pathology of the individual. Critique of culturalism is, however, to be distinguished from the new wave of anti-multiculturalism, argues Alana Lentin. Ostensibly aimed at the illiberalism of multiculturalism’s “beneficiaries”, the latter expresses intolerance of “bad diversity”.”

    Claiming the Right to Health in Brazilian Courts: The Exclusion of the Already Excluded…


    “The aim of this article is to test a widespread belief among Brazilian legal scholars in the area of social rights, namely, the claim that courts are an alternative institutional voice for the poor, who are usually marginalized from the political process. According to this belief, social rights litigation would be a means (supposedly “a better means”) of realizing rights such as the right to health care, since supposedly both the wealthy and the poor have equal access to the courts. To probe the consistency of this belief, we analyzed the socioeconomic profiles of plaintiffs in the city of Sao Paulo (Brazil) who were granted access to specific medications or medical treatments by judicial decisions. In this study, the justiciability of social rights has not proven to be a means of rendering certain public services more democratic and accessible.”

    Intersectionality and mediated cultural production in a globalized post-colonial world …


    “This paper aims to demonstrate how intersectionality provides an important conceptual tool to analyse practices of cultural production in ethnic minority media. In the context of the digital age, media are increasingly central as systems of representation of identity, culture and community. However, research examining how ethnic minority media become engaged in struggles of power is rare. Few works have paid attention to the ways in which race and gender operate in tandem to produce and maintain the unequal distribution of power in the mediascape of countries of post-colonial immigration. This paper juxtaposes gender studies and ethnic studies in order to analyse the representation of gender in ethnic media, with a particular focus on journalistic practices.”

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