“One… indication of such promise is the collection Immanuel Wallerstein and the Problem of the World: System, Scale,Culture... As the collection stages a conversation between world-systems and literary and cultural studies, it brings Wallerstein into the optics of the known for colleagues who are neither in sociology nor history departments.” Stephen Shapiro, Year's Work in Critical and Cultural Theory
“The collection of essays in this compilation ... should be of interest to scholars both in the humanities and the social sciences, as well as those in the growing number of global studies programs.” Okori Uneke, International Social Science Review
"The breadth and scope of the volume make it a valuable reference resource for anyone interested in the contribution and implications of world-systems analysis to the humanities. The cogent analyses provided by the contributors offer a much-needed indication of the ongoing transformations in the field. At the same time, the thoughtful account of the impact and consequences of Wallerstein’s approach will benefit students and scholars alike—especially, those interested in developing a holistic approach for the explanation and understanding of the increasingly complex world system.” Emilian Kavalski, Itinerario
“As the current crisis of financial markets displays both its high level of economic uncertainty and its devastating geopolitical consequences—with East and West, North and South progressively trading their places—the prescience of Wallerstein’s world-systems analysis appears admirable. But the authors of this book also demonstrate that it potentially affects the basic time-space determinants of every cultural critique. A timely and fruitful contribution.” Étienne Balibar, author of We, the People of Europe?
“This is a very compelling collection, one that is sure to be of interest to humanists and social scientists and to the growing number of programs in ‘global studies.’ It turns to Immanuel Wallerstein’s ‘large-scale vision’ as a means of countering the historical damage done by large-scale capitalism and acquiring a sharper understanding of the notion of ‘system’ and of the contingencies of ‘culture’ within it.” Françoise Lionnet, co-editor of The Creolization of Theory
About the Editors
David Palumbo-Liu is Professor of Comparative Literature at Stanford University.
Bruce Robbins is the Old Dominion Foundation Professor in the Humanities at Columbia University.
Nirvana Tanoukhi received her doctorate in Modern Thought and Literature from Stanford University. She has held fellowships at the Humanities Center and the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research, both at Harvard University.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Most Important Thing Happening 1
Part 1. System and Responsibility
The Modern World-System: Its Structures, Its Geoculture, Its Crisis and Transformation / Richard Lee 27
Blaming the System / Bruce Robbins 41
Part 2. Literature: Restructured, Re-historicized, Re-scaled
World-Systems Analysis, Evolutionary Theory, Weltliteratur / Franco Moretti 67
The Scale of World Literature / Nivrana Tanoukhi 78
Part 3. Respatializing, Remapping, Recognizing
The Space of the World: Beyond State-Centricism? / Neil Brenner 101
Cartographies of Connection: Ocean Maps as Metaphors for Inter-Area History / Kären Wigen 138
What Is a Poem?: The Event of Women and the Modern Girl as Problems in Global or World History / Tani E. Barlow 155
Part 4. Ethics, Otherness, System
Legal System of International Rights / Helen Stacy 187
Rationality and World-Systems Analysis: Fanon and the Impact of the Ethico-Historical / David Palumbo-Liu 202
Thinking about the Humanities / Immanuel Wallerstein 223
The Twilight of Capital? / Gopal Balakrishnan 227