Impasses of the Post-Global: Theory in the Era of Climate Change, Vol. 2

edited by Henry Sussman

The diverse materials comprising Impasses of the Post-Global take as their starting point an interrelated, if seemingly endless sequence of current ecological, demographic, socio-political, economic, and informational disasters. These have impacted on the stakes and tenor of cultural criticism as much as they have on tangible relations in the contemporary world. The contributors to the Impasses struggle as valiantly with a rapidly unfolding set of new discursive and communicative preconditions as they do with the open-ended chain of current insults and injuries to the ecological, socio-political, and cultural surrounds. These in turn demand increased attentiveness on the part of culturally and politically engaged readers.

If the volume claims a global, if not post-global scope in the range of its perspectives and interventions, the diversity of approaches and interests advanced and updated by its contributors is correspondingly vast. These include the contemporary discourses of deconstruction, climate change, ecological imbalance and despoilment, sustainability, security, economic bailout, auto-immunity, and globalization itself. With contributions by James H. Bunn, Rey Chow, Bruce Clarke, Tom Cohen, Randy Martin, Yates McKee, Alberto Moreiras, Haun Saussy, Tian Song, Henry Sussman, Samuel Weber, Ewa P. Ziarek, and Kryzsztof Ziarek.

“Crucially and critically positioned in response to the imbricated catastrophes that constitute our era of global climate change, this volume offers far more than a collection of superlative essays. It might be thought of rather as an assemblage of texts that powerfully address the role of critique in a time of global catastrophe. Taking up the ecological, financial, political, and ethical crises that beset our imperiled moment, these essays demonstrate how global catastrophe necessarily rereads and repositions the work of theory and praxis. No utopian discourse is to be found here. The authors of these pieces are far too aware of the magnitude and perilous reach of the collected crises that we place under the name of climate change, but in their singular way, each of these pieces profoundly reflects on, and perhaps points the way to, a possible passage through the impasse of the post-global.”
Russell Samolsky – University of California, Santa Barbara
“Including some of the most prominent figures on the critical-theoretical horizon today, Impasses of the Post-Global challenges theory to move out of the academy—first and foremost into the gathering ecological crisis, but also into related aspects of the contemporary world scene: sustainability, homeland security, bailout, mimetic sacrifice and victimhood, the global, the marrano and political democracy. Those interested in what new permutations postructuralist and other theory may undergo, as well as those concerned with the condition of our planet and the systems implicated in its current despoilation will find much to ponder in these essays. This volume proves as stimulating as it does urgent.
Joshua Kates – Department of English, Indiana University
Impasses of the Post-Global is a complex and committed critical engagement with the global environmental crisis. This collation demonstrates the power of contemporary theory as a means of intervention with the various natural, economic, and informational disasters that are radically reshaping human and planetary ecology. Sussman’s volume both establishes an important new critical agenda for theorists and the continuing significance of the humanities for understanding the unprecedented challenges we face. This inspiring cutting-edge collection is essential reading for anyone who cares about our environmental future.”
Jeffrey di Leo – University of Houston-Victoria

Editor Bio

Henry Sussman is Visting Professor, Germanic Language and Literature and Charlotte M. Craig Distinguished Visiting Professor of German, Dept. of German, Russian, and E. European Languages and Literatures, Rutgers University. His recent titles include Playful Intelligence: Digitizing Tradition (2014), Around the Book: Systems and Literacy (2011), Idylls of the Wanderer: Outside in Literature and Theory (2007), The Task of the Critic: Poetics, Philosophy, and Religion (2005), The Aesthetic Contract: Statutes of Art and Intellectual Work in Modernity (2005).