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  • Boy-Wives and Female Husbands

    Murray, Stephen O.; Roscoe, Will (SUNY Press, 2021-04-01)
    Among the many myths created about Africa, the claim that homosexuality and gender diversity are absent or incidental is one of the oldest and most enduring. Historians, anthropologists, and many contemporary Africans alike have denied or overlooked African same-sex patterns or claimed that such patterns were introduced by Europeans or Arabs. In fact, same-sex love and nonbinary genders were and are widespread in Africa. Boy-Wives and Female Husbands documents the presence of this diversity in some fifty societies in every region of the continent south of the Sahara. Essays by scholars from a variety of disciplines explore institutionalized marriages between women, same-sex relations between men and boys in colonial work settings, mixed gender roles in east and west Africa, and the emergence of LGBTQ activism in South Africa, which became the first nation in the world to constitutionally ban discrimination based on sexual orientation. Also included are oral histories, folklore, and translations of early ethnographic reports by German and French observers. Boy-Wives and Female Husbands was the first serious study of same-sex sexuality and gender diversity in Africa, and this edition includes a new foreword by Marc Epprecht that underscores the significance of the book for a new generation of African scholars, as well as reflections on the book’s genesis by the late Stephen O. Murray. (The open access edition is available due to the generous support of the Murray Hong Family Trust.)
  • Death Rights

    Koretsky, Deanna P. (SUNY Press, 2021-03-01)
    Death Rights presents an antiracist critique of British romanticism by deconstructing one of its organizing tropes—the suicidal creative “genius.” Putting texts by Olaudah Equiano, Mary Shelley, John Keats, and others into critical conversation with African American literature, black studies, and feminist theory, Deanna P. Koretsky argues that romanticism is part and parcel of the legal and philosophical discourses underwriting liberal modernity’s antiblack foundations. Read in this context, the trope of romantic suicide serves a distinct political function, indexing the limits of liberal subjectivity and (re)inscribing the rights and freedoms promised by liberalism as the exclusive province of white men. The first book-length study of suicide in British romanticism, Death Rights also points to the enduring legacy of romantic ideals in the academy and contemporary culture more broadly. Koretsky challenges scholars working in historically Eurocentric fields to rethink their identification with epistemes rooted in antiblackness. And, through discussions of recent cultural touchstones such as Kurt Cobain’s resurgence in hip-hop and Victor LaValle’s comic book sequel to Frankenstein, Koretsky provides all readers with a trenchant analysis of how eighteenth-century ideas about suicide continue to routinize antiblackness in the modern world.
  • The Other/Argentina

    Kaminsky, Amy K. (SUNY Press, 2021-04-01)
    The Other/Argentina looks at literature, film, and the visual arts to examine the threads of Jewishness that create patterns of meaning within the fabric of Argentine self-representation. A multiethnic yet deeply Roman Catholic country, Argentina has worked mightily to fashion itself as a modern nation. In so doing, it has grappled with the paradox of Jewishness, emblematic both of modernity and of the lingering traces of the premodern. By the same token, Jewishness is woven into, but also other to, Argentineity. Consequently, books, movies, and art that reflect on Jewishness play a significant role in shaping Argentina’s cultural landscape. In the process they necessarily inscribe, and sometimes confound, norms of gender and sexuality. Just as Jewishness seeps into Argentina, Argentina’s history, politics, and culture mark Jewishness and alter its meaning. The feminized body of the Jewish male, for example, is deeply rooted in Western tradition; but the stigmatized body of the Jewish prostitute and the lacerated body of the Jewish torture victim acquire particular significance in Argentina. Furthermore, Argentina’s iconic Jewish figures include not only the peddler and the scholar, but also the Jewish gaucho and the urban mobster, troubling conventional readings of Jewish masculinity. As it searches for threads of Jewishness, richly imbued with the complexities of gender and sexuality, The Other/Argentina explores the patterns those threads weave, however overtly or subtly, into the fabric of Argentine national meaning, especially at such critical moments in Argentine history as the period of massive state-sponsored immigration, the rise of labor and anarchist movements, the Perón era, and the 1976–83 dictatorship. In arguing that Jewishness is an essential element of Argentina’s self-fashioning as a modern nation, the book shifts the focus in Latin American Jewish studies from Jewish identity to the meaning of Jewishness for the nation.
  • Defending Women's Rights in Europe

    Avdeyeva, Olga A. (SUNY Press, 2015-05-01)
    Between 2004 and 2007, ten post-communist Eastern European states became members of the European Union (EU). To do so, these nations had to meet certain EU accession requirements, including antidiscrimination reforms. While attaining EU membership was an incredible achievement, many scholars and experts doubted the sustainability of accession-linked reforms. Would these nations comply with EU directives on gender equality? To explore this question, Defending Women’s Rights in Europe presents a unique analysis of detailed original comparative data on state compliance with EU gender equality requirements. It features a comprehensive quantitative analysis combined with rigorous insightful case studies of reforms in Poland, the Czech Republic, and Lithuania. Olga A. Avdeyeva reveals that policy and institutional reforms developed furthest in those states where women’s advocacy NGOs managed to form coalitions with governing political parties. After becoming members of the EU, the governments did not abolish these policies and institutions despite the costs and lack of popular support. Reputational concerns prevented state elites from policy dismantling, but gender equality policies and institutions became marginalized on the state agenda after accession.
  • Two Sides of a Barricade

    Scholl, Christian (SUNY Press, 2013-01-01)
    Two Sides of a Barricade argues that to construct global democracy, conflict and dissent must be taken seriously. Christian Scholl explores the political significance of the confrontations within four sites of interaction: bodies, space, communication, and law. Each site of struggle provides a different entry point to understand the influence of protester and police tactics on each other. At the same time, the four sites of struggle allow a comprehensive analysis of how the contestation of global hegemonic forces during summit protests trigger a preemptive shift in social control through increased deployment of biopolitical forms of power.
  • Shaping Gender Policy in Turkey

    Marshall, Gül Aldıkaçtı (SUNY Press, 2013-07-01)
    Shaping Gender Policy in Turkey uncovers how, why, and to what extent Turkish women, in addition to the Turkish state and the European Union, have been involved in gender policy changes in Turkey. Through analysis of the role of multiple actors at the subnational, national, and supranational levels, Gül Aldıkaçtı Marshall provides a detailed account of policy diffusion and feminist involvement in policymaking. Contextualizing the meaning of gender equality and multiple approaches to women’s rights, she highlights a pivotal but neglected dimension of scholarship on Turkey’s candidacy for European Union membership. This book represents one of the few works providing a multilevel analysis of gender policy in predominantly Muslim countries, and highlights Turkey’s role at a time of swift structural changes to several political regimes in the Middle East.
  • New Frontiers of Slavery

    Tomich, Dale W. (SUNY Press, 2016-03-01)
    The essays presented in New Frontiers of Slavery represent new analytical and interpretive approaches to the crisis of Atlantic slavery during the nineteenth century. By treating slavery within the framework of the modern world economy, they call attention to new zones of slave production that were formed as part of processes of global economic and political restructuring. Chapters by a group of international historians, economists, and sociologists examine both the global dynamics of the new slavery, and various aspects of economy-society and master-slave relations in the new zones. They emphasize the ways in which certain slave regimes, particularly in Cuba and Brazil, were formed as specific local responses to global processes, industrialization, urbanization, market integration, the formation of national states, and the emergence of liberal ideologies and institutions. These essays thus challenge conventional understandings of slavery, which often regard it as incompatible with modernity.
  • Austerity and the Labor Movement

    Schiavone, Michael (SUNY Press, 2016-12-01)
    Austerity policies have become the new norm throughout both the developed and developing world. Indeed, austerity has become the new buzz word in the lexicon of politicians from across the political spectrum. At the same time austerity measures have been met with mass protest, the most famous example of which is the Occupy Movement. In the not-too-distant past it would have been the labor movement at the forefront resisting policies that arguably disproportionally target working people and their families. Throughout the twentieth century it was the labor movement that fought for all working people. However, there is an increasing assumption that the labor movement is unable to adequately defend workers from the onslaught of austerity measures. Austerity and the Labor Movement analyzes whether this assumption is indeed true. Examining the labor movements in the US, UK, Greece, Ireland, and Spain, Michael Schiavone provides a systematic explanation of the appeal of austerity policies in certain circles and why the labor movement in each of these countries has been largely unsuccessful in overturning such policies. He argues that the labor movement needs to make major changes and embrace social movement unionism if it has any hope to stop its decline and have any chance to successfully fight against austerity and neoliberalism more generally.
  • American Dolorologies

    Strick, Simon (SUNY Press, 2014-04-01)
    American Dolorologies presents a theoretically sophisticated intervention into contemporary equations of subjectivity with trauma. Simon Strick argues against a universalism of pain and instead foregrounds the intimate relations of bodily affect with racial and gender politics. In concise and original readings of medical debates, abolitionist photography, Enlightenment philosophy, and contemporary representations of torture, Strick shows the crucial function that evocations of “bodies in pain” serve in the politicization of differences. This book provides a historical contextualization of contemporary ideas of suffering, sympathy, and compassion, thus establishing an embodied genealogy of the pain that is at the heart of American democratic sentiment.
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Theorized

    Henderson, Errol A. (SUNY Press, 2019-08-01)
    The study of the impact of Black Power Movement (BPM) activists and organizations in the 1960s through ʼ70s has largely been confined to their role as proponents of social change; but they were also theorists of the change they sought. In The Revolution Will Not Be Theorized Errol A. Henderson explains this theoretical contribution and places it within a broader social theory of black revolution in the United States dating back to nineteenth-century black intellectuals. These include black nationalists, feminists, and anti-imperialists; activists and artists of the Harlem Renaissance; and early Cold War–era black revolutionists. The book first elaborates W. E. B. Du Bois’s thesis of the “General Strike” during the Civil War, Alain Locke’s thesis relating black culture to political and economic change, Harold Cruse’s work on black cultural revolution, and Malcolm X’s advocacy of black cultural and political revolution in the United States. Henderson then critically examines BPM revolutionists’ theorizing regarding cultural and political revolution and the relationship between them in order to realize their revolutionary objectives. Focused more on importing theory from third world contexts that were dramatically different from the United States, BPM revolutionists largely ignored the theoretical template for black revolution most salient to their case, which undermined their ability to theorize a successful black revolution in the United States.