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What is an event?

Author: Robin Erica Wagner-Pacifici
Publisher: Chicago ; London : The University of Chicago Press, [2017]
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
We live in a world of breaking news, where at almost any moment our everyday routine can be interrupted by a faraway event. Events are central to the way that individuals and societies experience life. Even life's inevitable moments birth, death, love, and war are almost always a surprise. Inspired by the cataclysmic events of September 11, Robin Wagner-Pacifici presents here a tour de force, an analysis of how  Read more...
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Additional Physical Format: ebook version :
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Robin Erica Wagner-Pacifici
ISBN: 9780226439648 022643964X 9780226439785 022643978X
OCLC Number: 952567196
Description: xii, 225 pages : illustrations, maps ; 23 cm
Contents: Introduction; Why a book about events?; Advances and limitations of existing scholarship; Form and flow --
Political semiosis; Inside or outside; Deconstructing political semiosis ; Summary --
Ground; L'origine du monde: birth; Et in Arcadia ego: death; Background; Ground as surface, point of contact, scene of action; Underground and overground --
Rupture; Suspended animation; Time and space in rupture ; Event and series: the financial crisis of 2008; "The trigger gave" --
Resonating forms; Violence and event formation; The French Revolution --
Jacques-Louis David: eventful moments and the pause --
Fragmenting forms; The representational uncertainty of the Paris Commune; Styles and genres of the Paris Commune; Formal fault lines of Il Quarto Stato --
Sedimentation and drift; 9/11; Sedimentation and the official report; Insiders and outsiders; Event spaces; 9/11 in Lower Manhattan --
Conclusion.
Responsibility: Robin Wagner-Pacifici.

Abstract:

We live in a world of breaking news, where at almost any moment our everyday routine can be interrupted by a faraway event. Events are central to the way that individuals and societies experience life. Even life's inevitable moments birth, death, love, and war are almost always a surprise. Inspired by the cataclysmic events of September 11, Robin Wagner-Pacifici presents here a tour de force, an analysis of how events erupt and take off from the ground of ongoing, everyday life, and how they then move across time and landscape. "What Is an Event?" ranges across several disciplines, systematically analyzing the ways that events emerge, take shape, gain momentum, flow, and even get bogged down. As an exploration of how events are constructed out of ruptures, it provides a mechanism for understanding eventful forms and flows, from the micro-level of individual life events to the macro-level of historical revolutions, contemporary terrorist attacks, and financial crises. Wagner-Pacifici takes a close look at a number of cases, both real and imagined, through the reports, personal narratives, paintings, iconic images, political posters, sculptures, and novels they generate and through which they live on. What is ultimately at stake for individuals and societies in events, Wagner-Pacifici argues, are identities, loyalties, social relationships, and our very experiences of time and space. What Is an Event? provides a way for us all as social and political beings living through events, and as analysts reflecting upon them to better understand what is at stake in the formations and flows of the events that mark and shape our lives.

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"Once again, Wagner-Pacifici brings together art, philosophy, and sociology in probing, sophisticated, and deeply illuminating sophisticated ways. Her new social theory sheds new light on empirical Read more...

 
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