• Autonomy: The Social Ontology of Art under Capitalism

    Author(s):
    Pages: 232
    Illustrations: 30 illustrations, incl. 21 in color
    Sales/Territorial Rights: World
  • Cloth: $89.95 - Not In Stock
    978-1-4780-0124-9
  • Paperback: $24.95 - Not In Stock
    978-1-4780-0159-1
  • Acknowledgments  ix
    Introduction. On Art and the Commodity Form  1
    1. Photography as Film and Film as Photography  41
    2. The Novel and the Ruse of the Work  79
    3. Citation and Affect in Music  115
    4. Modernism on TV  152
    Epilogue. Taking Sides  178
    Notes  183
    Bibliography  207
    Index
  • "With wide-ranging scholarship, brilliant and learned commentary, and prose that is impressive for its energy and clarity, Nicholas Brown has written a book that accomplishes what no other work has. A major contribution." — Michael Fried, author of, What Was Literary Impressionism?

    “In a series of deft and frequently astonishing readings ranging from Richard Linklater's films and Charles Ray's totaled cars to the White Stripes' music and Jennifer Egan's novels, Nicholas Brown's startlingly intelligent Autonomy transforms our understanding of contemporary aesthetic philosophy, literature, and theories of art.” — Lisa Siraganian, author of, Modernism’s Other Work: The Art Object’s Political Life

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  • Description

    In Autonomy Nicholas Brown theorizes the historical and theoretical argument for art's autonomy from its acknowledged character as a commodity. Refusing the position that the distinction between art and the commodity has collapsed, Brown demonstrates how art can, in confronting its material determinations, suspend the logic of capital by demanding interpretive attention. He applies his readings of Marx, Hegel, Adorno, and Jameson to a range of literature, photography, music, television, and sculpture, from Cindy Sherman's photography and the novels of Ben Lerner and Jennifer Egan to The Wire and the music of the White Stripes. He demonstrates that through their attention and commitment to form, such artists turn aside the determination posed by the demand of the market, thereby defeating the foreclosure of meaning entailed in commodification. In so doing, he offers a new theory of art that prompts a rethinking of the relationship between art, critical theory, and capitalism.

    About The Author(s)

    Nicholas Brown is Associate Professor of English and African American Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago, author of Utopian Generations: The Political Horizon of Twentieth-Century Literature, and coeditor of Contemporary Marxist Theory: An Anthology.
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