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Theory, Culture, Society & Autonomy

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The December 2014 issue of Theory, Culture & Society contains a section on Jacques Rancière edited by Nikos Papastergiadis. Nikos was involved in the organizing of the Autonomy Symposium at the Van Abbemuseum in 2011, and like 2012’s autonomy issue of Open, which I guest-edited, this TCS special is an outcome of the symposium. My essay, “Autonomy as Aesthetic Practice,” is a further development of my essay in the Open issue and related to the subsequent book chapter (“Autonomy in Action”) in History in Motion (2013). Originally I assumed that Nikos’s Rancière issue would see the light of day before my book, but the glacial pace of peer-reviewed academic publishing has decreed otherwise. The advantage of this is that it has allowed me some further tweaking. It’s fair to say that the Open issue had its share of small editorial slip-ups, due to pressing temporal constraints – though I wouldn’t have wanted to wait till 2014, quite apart from the fact that at the moment Open (now Open!) is an online platform. (The possibility of paper anthologies for certain thematic strands is however being examined.)

Meanwhile, the Art and Autonomy reader on which I’m working for Afterall is also inching forward in a snail-like manner, mostly due to the many pressures on both parties (Afterall and myself). It should see the light of day sometime in 2015.

Image: Charles Esche, Nikos Papastergiadis and Jacques Rancière at the Autonomy Symposium. Photo by Emilio Moreno.

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