Category: Agency Theory

The Communist Manifest – Marx and Engels

Marx, Karl, and Friedrich Engels. The Communist Manifesto. New York: Barnes & Nobel Classics, 2005. Print. In the Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels argue that while the whole of history is the story of class struggle, that the current struggle of our time is that between the working class (proletariat) and the owners and means of production (bourgeois).

Powers of Horror – Kristeva

Kristeva, Julia. Powers of Horror: An Essay on Abjection. New York: Columbia University Press, 1982. Print. In Powers of Horror, Julia Kristeva addresses the role of abjection in literary theory and in the realm of the psychosocial. Defined by Kristeva, abjection occurs as a response to a threatened breakdown in meaning caused by the loss of the distinction between subject…

Reassembling the Social – Latour

Latour, Bruno. Reassembling the Social: An Introduction to Actor-Network-Theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005. Print. In Reassembling the Social, Bruno Latour argues that the use of the word “social” by social scientists or sociologist has come to wrongly describe something stable that can be used to describe a phenomenon

How We Became Posthuman – Hayles

In the introduction to her book, How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics, Katherine Hayles states “Here, at the inaugural moment of the computer age, the erasure of embodiment is performed so that ‘intelligence’ becomes a property of the formal manipulation of symbols rather than enaction in the human life-world” (xi). Yet, Hayles contests the notions…

Crip Theory – McRuer

McRuer, Robert. Crip Theory: Cultural Signs of Queerness and Disability. New York: New York University Press, 2006. Print. In Crip Theory, Robert McRuer uses queer studies as a springboard for a comparative theory of disability. McRuer begins the text with an introduction that establishes the parallels between queer and crip theories. McRuer analyzes the ways othered bodies (both queer and…

Gender Trouble (Chapter 1) – Butler

Butler, Judith. Gender Trouble: Feminism and Subversion of Identity. Hoboken, NJ: Taylor and Francis, 2001. Print. In Gender Trouble, Judith Butler analyzes and critiques the problematic qualities of sex/gender theories that predate her own. Butler begins with a discussion of what constitutes “woman.” Butler argues that the idea of woman is limited or subjugated by the same power structures through…

“The Subject and Power” – Foucault

Foucault, Michel. Power. Ed. James Faubion. New York: The New Press, 1994. Print. In “The Subject and Power” Foucault explains the modes of objectification that turn human beings into subjects. Foucault states, “This form of power that applies itself to immediate everyday life categorizes the individual, marks him by his own individuality, attached him to his own identity, imposes a…

Narrative Theory : Core Concepts & Critical Debates – Herman

Herman, David et al. Narrative Theory: Core Concept and Critical Debates. Columbus, OH: The Ohio State University Press, 2012. Print. In Narrative Theory: Core Concepts & Critical Debates, Herman argues for approaching narrative through the lens of worldmaking. He states, “worldmaking encompasses the referential dimensions of narrative, its capacity to evoke worlds in which interpreters can, with more or less…