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Book Title: History and Repetition|
Date of issue: November 29th 2011
ISBN 13: 9780231157292
The author of the book: Kōjin Karatani
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 25.75 MB
Edition: Columbia University Press
Read full description of the books History and Repetition:
Kojin Karatani wrote the essays in "History and Repetition" during a time of radical historical change, triggered by the collapse of the Cold War and the death of the Showa emperor in 1989. Reading Karl Marx in an original way, Karatani developed a theory of history based on the repetitive cycle of crises attending the expansion and transformation of capital. His work led to a rigorous analysis of political, economic, and literary forms of representation that recast historical events as a series of repeated forms forged in the transitional moments of global capitalism.
"History and Repetition" cemented Karatani's reputation as one of Japan's premier thinkers, capable of traversing the fields of philosophy, political economy, history, and literature in his work. The first complete translation of "History and Repetition" into English, undertaken with the cooperation of Karatani himself, this volume opens with his innovative reading of "The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte," tracing Marx's early theoretical formulation of the state. Karatani follows with a study of violent crises as they recur after major transitions of power, developing his theory of historical repetition and introducing a groundbreaking interpretation of fascism (in both Europe and Japan) as the spectral return of the absolutist monarch in the midst of a crisis of representative democracy.
For Karatani, fascism represents the most violent materialization of the repetitive mechanism of history. Yet he also seeks out singularities that operate outside the brutal inevitability of historical repetition, whether represented in literature or, more precisely, in the process of literature's demise. Closely reading the works of Oe Kenzaburo, Mishima Yukio, Nakagami Kenji, and Murakami Haruki, Karatani compares the recurrent and universal with the singular and unrepeatable, while advancing a compelling theory of the decline of modern literature. Merging theoretical arguments with a concrete analysis of cultural and intellectual history, Karatani's essays encapsulate a brilliant, multidisciplinary perspective on world history.
Read information about the authorKōjin Karatani (柄谷 行人 Karatani Kōjin, born August 6, 1941, Amagasaki) is a Japanese philosopher and literary critic.
Karatani was educated at University of Tokyo, where he received a BA in economics and an MA in English literature. The Gunzō Literary Prize, which he received at the age of 27 for an essay on Natsume Sōseki, was his first critical acclaim as a literary critic. While teaching at Hosei University, Tokyo, he wrote extensively about modernity and postmodernity with a particular focus on language, number, and money, concepts that form the subtitle of one of his central books: Architecture as Metaphor.
In 1975, he was invited to Yale University to teach Japanese literature as a visiting professor, where he met Paul de Man and Fredric Jameson and began to work on formalism. Starting from a study of Natsume Sōseki, the variety of the subjects examined by Karatani became so wide that he earned the nickname The Thinking Machine.
Karatani collaborated with novelist Kenji Nakagami, to whom he introduced the works of Faulkner. With Nakagami, he published Kobayashi Hideo o koete (Overcoming Kobayashi Hideo). The title is an ironic reference to “Kindai no chokoku” (Overcoming Modernity), a symposium held in the summer of 1942 at Kyoto Imperial University (now Kyoto University) at which Hideo Kobayashi (whom Karatani and Nakagami did not hold in great esteem) was a participant.
He was also a regular member of ANY, the international architects' conference that was held annually for the last decade of the 20th century and that also published an architectural/philosophical series with Rizzoli under the general heading of Anyone.
Since 1990, Karatani has been regularly teaching at Columbia University as a visiting professor.
Karatani founded the New Associationist Movement (NAM) in Japan in the summer of 2000. NAM was conceived as a counter–capitalist/nation-state association, inspired by the experiment of LETS (Local Exchange Trading Systems, based on non-marketed currency). He was also the co-editor, with Akira Asada, of the Japanese quarterly journal, Hihyōkūkan (Critical Space), until it ended in 2002.
In 2006, Karatani retired from the chair of the International Center for Human Sciences at Kinki University, Osaka, where he had been teaching.
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