Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Cruel Optimism in the Summer

This Summer, the CSRG will be meeting every second Wednesday in CNH 332 to read through Lauren Berlant's Cruel Optimism (Duke UP, 2006). Berlant's book examines a variety of textual sites, from literature, film and art to family life and body image, to examine the ways people remain attached to post World War II visions of "the good life" even in the midst of the widespread dissolution of this fantasy. Combining affect and queer theory with Marxian analysis, and delivered with Berlant's equally poetic and rigorous style of academic prose, this summer's readings promise a venue in which to explore the structures of feeling that emerge as contemporary situations coalesce into new generic forms.
“A relation of cruel optimism exists when something you desire is actually an obstacle to your flourishing.”
The Cultural Studies Reading Group meets during the summer every second Wednesday, starting June 14, in CNH 332 at McMaster University. Newcomers are always welcome. Please e-mail us for further details.

*Check out Lauren Berlant's blog, Supervalent Thought.

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