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Postmodern Impegno - Impegno postmoderno

Ethics and Commitment in Contemporary Italian Culture - Etica e engagement nella cultura italiana contemporanea

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Pierpaolo Antonello and Florian Mussgnug

This book challenges widespread and largely negative assumptions about Italian postmodernism and postmodernism in general. It considers contemporary Italian culture as a particularly interesting testing-ground for pluriform struggles of an ethical or political kind, struggles which build upon, whilst rejecting the essentialist assumptions behind, conventional notions of artistic commitment, or impegno.
Drawing on a variety of cultural fields and artistic media – from cinema to the literary genres of autobiography, romance and the giallo; from feminism to pensiero debole; from theatrical performance to shared practices of cultural memory – the volume charts instances of ethical commitment and emancipatory social and political intervention in Italian culture within a post-ideological and post-hegemonic framework, siding with a more constructive and less ‘apocalyptic’ analysis of the cultural climate of the past two decades in Italy. This balancing act is described by the contributors as ‘postmodern impegno’. The authors, artists and thinkers discussed in the essays include, among others, Eraldo Affinati, Adriana Cavarero, Marco Tullio Giordana, Carlo Lucarelli, Nanni Moretti, Marco Paolini, Roberto Saviano, Gianni Vattimo and Antonio Tabucchi.
Questo libro mette in discussione la diffusa posizione critica che tende a svalutare l’esperienza culturale della postmodernità e del postmodernismo in Italia. Il contesto italiano contemporaneo è di fatto un esempio quanto mai interessante e sintomatico per il definirsi di forme plurali e non monologiche di impegno politico-culturale, che pur rifiutando forme di assolutismo o essenzialismo epistemico o ideologico, mantengono fede a una consolidata tradizione di engagement artistico.
Partendo dall’analisi di vari generi e strategie discorsive – cinema, teatro, filosofia, letteratura di genere (romance, giallo, autobiografia) o di denuncia – e di vari autori – Eraldo Affinati, Adriana Cavarero, Marco Tullio Giordana, Carlo Lucarelli, Nanni Moretti, Marco Paolini, Roberto Saviano, Antonio Tabucchi, Gianni Vattimo, e altri – questo volume raccoglie e analizza esempi di impegno etico e di intervento socio-politico all’interno di una prospettiva post-ideologica e post-egemonica, proponendo una visione più costruttiva e meno «apocalittica» del clima culturale generale degli ultimi vent’anni in Italia.

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Pierpaolo Antonello and Florian MussgnugIntroduction 1

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Pierpaolo Antonello and Florian Mussgnug Introduction Dis-moi ce que tu exclus, je te dirai ce que tu penses. […] Celui ou ce qu’on chasse ou expulse enseigne plus de choses sur ceux qui l’excluent que tout les discours que ceux-ci tiennent sur eux-mêmes. — Michel Serres, Atlas Perspectivistic understanding fails as soon as political interests are at stake; but otherwise, especially in aesthetic matter, our historical capacity of adaptation to the most various forms of beauty is almost boundless. — Erich Auerbach, ‘Vico’s Contribution to Literary Theory’ S’il est vrai que les Européens ont inventé la modernité, il est important qu’ils puissent, si j’ose dire, la désinventer, ou, plus exactement la ‘rappeler’, comme l’industrie rappelle un produit défectueux. — Bruno Latour, ‘Le Rappel de la modernité’ ‘Postmodern Impegno’: the title of this book may strike some readers as a category error, a contradiction-in-terms. Postmodernism, as Hans Bertens points out, is an ‘exasperating term’, which has been applied in an extra- ordinary number of fields and at various levels of abstraction, meaning very different things to different people.1 For nearly fifty years, it has been used to describe diametrically opposed cultural practices: in architecture, a predilection for hybridity over order and unity; in American literary criti- cism of the 1960s and 1970s, a move away from narrative and representa- tion; in music, an attention to the sounds of everyday life; in sociology, a rapid transformation of consumer culture caused by the rise of a new middle class.2 Most frequently, however,...

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