File Size: 859 KB
Print Length: 134 pages
Publisher: University of Chicago Press; Reprint edition (September 15, 2008)
Publication Date: September 15, 2008
It should be observed that Bersani is building on previous work here: that is, it requires some familiarity with the psychoanalytic literature in order to understand fully the force of his critique. Moreover, Bersani's prose is characteristically dense, perhaps even more so in an e book so short in length (note that the margins are wide and the 12-point font is not hard on the eyes) yet so powerful in theoretical acumen. Together with those caveats, readers usually takes up *Intimacies* for superior study in: aesthetics (Chapter 1, on Henry James's *The Beast in the Jungle* and the French film *Intimate Strangers*); unorthodox theory (Chapter 2, on the culture of barebacking); and social theory (Chapter 3, on the issue of "evil" in our modern day moment).
While Chapters 1 and 3 cover acquainted terrain for longstanding viewers of Bersani, Chapter 2, I found, opens up new directions for theorizing libido. In his account of barebacking, Bersani turns to "pre-modern" expressions of faith based piety -- namely the Quietist practice of "pure love" -- to make clear the way the putative "self-destructiveness" of unprotected gay male sex bespeaks something more revolutionary: the ascetic discipline of ego-indifference, a kind of "pure" impersonality. Without "celebrating" barebacking as such, Bersani wants to acknowledge that there is something valuable in the mode of relating to others precisely through "self-divestiture. "
Chapter 2 is the most insightful, and original, work in unorthodox theory I've read since the much-debated turn to "gay shame" happened in the field with the publication of Lee Edelman's *No Future*. I find Bersani here to be a more convincing theorist of the limits of relationality than Edelman. Also i think his attempt to craft a theory of love (in Chapter 3) through the notion of "impersonal narcissism" is more supple and engaging than Edelman's repeated missives against heteronormative reproductivity.
The one reservation I possess about this book is that the self-described "dialogue" between Bersani and Phillips isn't executed to great effect. Phillips is surely an able respondent to Bersani, yet I couldn't shake the feeling that their swap was a little unequal. After following Bersani with patience construct his theoretical lattice from Chapters 1 through 3, I found Phillips's reply to be somewhat of a distraction, if not an "anticlimax. inches No doubt Bersani would have fun with my feeling of being let down (i. e., "Could it have been every other way? "). Still, I believe the book could have been better as a monograph, with Bersani composing a longer Conclusion and integrating certain of Phillips's points into the text of his critique.
One last note: Bersani bases much of his discussion of barebacking on Tim Dean's research on the topic. Leader has just published his book on barebacking, entitled *Unlimited Intimacy*, with the University of Chicago Click. I haven't read this book yet, but I imagine it will prove a useful analogue to *Intimacies*., great, Awesome product! Works flawlessly for leveling and trimming cakes! I will recommend it to my good friend. for my buddy, helpful., A new friend asked me to find this book for her - no problem, item exactly as described. Thanks!, Leo Bersani, which includes interspersed comment by Hersker Phillips, continues his theme of the shattering of the standard psychoanalytic ego in restrict experiences. Bersani has recently been developing this line of thought for a amount of years and provides it with an always interesting combo of erudition (here an analysis of Henry James' "Beast in the Jungle") with modern day gay issues (here "barebacking").
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