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Declensions of the self; a bestiary of modernity.


Declensions of the self; a bestiary of modernity.

Ed. by Jean-Jacques Defert et al.

Cambridge Scholars Publishing


342 pages




Defert, Tchir and Webb, all doctoral candidates at the University of Alberta, have bravely ventured into interdisciplinary waters in this collection of essays on modern forms of self-definition. Beginning with a discussion by two professors that includes the danger of working outside academic structure, the essays cover a wide range of viewpoints from which human "declensions" are observed. Many of the authors take Foucault as a jumping-off point, either to refute or elaborate on his theories. Specific authors are sometimes analyzed to suggest particular forms of the search for identity in their work and their lives. The body as text is a new concept that is addressed as is the idea of the Other that is needed to define ourselves. This variegate collection is one that would be much more difficult for those already entrenched in departmentalized universities to create.

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Publication:Reference & Research Book News
Article Type:Book review
Date:Nov 1, 2009
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