Surpassing the Spectacle: Global Transformations and the Changing Politics of Art by Carol BeckerSurpassing the Spectacle: Global Transformations and the Changing Politics of Art by Carol Becker

Surpassing the Spectacle: Global Transformations and the Changing Politics of Art

byCarol Becker

Paperback | December 17, 2001

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In her newest book, leading social critic Carol Becker offers a timely analysis of the nature of art and its role in politics and society. Completed just before the September 11, 2001 World Trade Center catastrophe, Surpassing the Spectacle is now especially relevant in its analysis of the spectacle society that was omnipresent before that fatal day. This book is remarkably prescient of the new concerns that have now become foremost in our thoughts since the attack. This collection of essays explores such topics as public memorials, America's attempt to hold onto a sense of security while faced with the reality of international terrorists living within our own cities, the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission, restorative justice, and issues of freedom of expression as they relate to incidents such as New York Mayor Guiliani's quest to ban Chris Ofili's painting of 'The Holy Virgin Mary' at the Brooklyn Museum. The essays cohere around Becker's central concerns: the education and role of artists in a post post-modern climate, controversies over public space, iconography, memorializing, and the myth of the global citizen. Throughout, Becker works to reconstruct a vision of humanity that incorporates, and hopefully moves us beyond, a dystopian moment when we no longer were able to use words such as humane, accountable, or the public good without seeming nostalgic and romantic. Becker raises the question of the place of art and the function of public intellectuals in a society desperately in need of creativity and leadership. The book is written in clear and accessible prose, which nonetheless looks at the issues philosophically and does not sacrifice any of the subtleties of thought necessary to contextualize and surpass the spectacle of contemporary U.S. society.
Carol Becker is dean of faculty and vice-president for academic affairs at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She is the author of Zones of Contention: Essays on Art, Institutions, Gender, and Anxiety (New York Press, 1996) and The Subversive Imagination: Artists, Society, and Social Responsibility(Routledge, 1994).
Title:Surpassing the Spectacle: Global Transformations and the Changing Politics of ArtFormat:PaperbackPublished:December 17, 2001Publisher:Rowman & Littlefield PublishersLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0742509206

ISBN - 13:9780742509207

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Introduction Chapter 2 The Artist as Public Intellectual Chapter 3 The Nature of the Investigation: Art Making in a Post-Postmodern Era Chapter 4 The Art of Testimony Chapter 5 Brooklyn Museum: Messing with the Sacred Chapter 6 Betrayal Chapter 7 Trial by Fire: A Saga of Gender and Leadership Chapter 8 Reconciling Truth in South Africa Chapter 9 Memory and Monstrosity Chapter 10 The Second Johannesburg Biennale Chapter 11 The Romance of Nomadism Chapter 12 Art and Ecology Chapter 13 GFP Bunny and the Plight of the Posthuman Chapter 14 Surpassing the Spectacle Chapter 15 Index

Editorial Reviews

In this passionate and fiercely engaged book, Carol Becker makes the case that without the ability of artists to speak the unspeakable and find form for the invisible, this country has no chance to resist the infantilizing seductiveness of spectacle and realize the radical potential of freedom.