Faultlines: Cultural Materialism and the Politics of Dissident Reading
University of California Press, 1992 M09 28 - 365 pages
If we come to consciousness within a language that is complicit with the social order, how can we conceive, let alone organize, resistance to that social order? This key question in the politics of reading and subcultural practice informs Alan Sinfield's book on writing in early-modern England.
New historicism has often shown people trapped in a web of language and culture. In lively discussions of writings by Shakespeare, Marlowe, Sidney, and Donne, Sinfield reassesses the scope of dissidence and control. The early-modern state, Christianity, and the cultural apparatus, despite an ideology of unity and explicit violence, could not but allow space to challenging voices. Sinfield shows that disruptions in concepts of hierarchy, nationality, gender, and sexuality force their way into literary texts.
Sinfield is often provocative. He "rewrites" Julius Caesar to produce a different politics, compares Sidney's idea of poetry to Leonid Brezhnev's, and reinstates the concept of character in the face of post-structuralist theory. He keeps the current politics of literary study in view, especially in a substantial chapter on Shakespeare in the U.S. Sinfield subjects interactions between class, ethnicity, sexuality, and the professional structures of the humanities to a detailed and hard-hitting critique, and argues for new commitments to collectivities and subcultures.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
TWO Cultural Materialism Othello and the
THREE When Is a Character Not a Character?
An Outline Theory
History Ideology and
SIX History and Ideology Masculinity and
Questions of Subjectivity
Other editions - View all
absolutist action actually allowed American appear argued argument audience authority become believe Books Caesar called Calvin Cambridge chapter character Christian claim continuous course criticism cultural depends discourses dissident distinctive divine dominant early effect Elizabethan England English established fact fall further Hamlet hand hence Henry History human idea ideology individual instance institutions issue James John killing kind king lines literary Literature live London Macbeth means mind move nature observes Othello Oxford pagan person Philip play poetry political position present Press produce protestant puritan question quoted reason Reformation relations religion Renaissance respect role rule says seems sense sexual Shakespeare Sidney Sidney's social society story structure suggests supposed theory things thought traditional Tragedy Univ universal women writing York