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Baldness and Civilization

Alopecia and the Social Construction of Race in the Gilded Age and Progressive Era

Brian Donovan


In late-nineteenth and early-twentieth-century America, doctors, scientists, and social commentators amplified concerns that white men were going bald at an alarming rate. Theories of baldness in the Gilded Age and Progressive Era created and relied on racial distinctions. This article examines the role of baldness and perceptions of baldness in the construction of racial categories during the turn of the twentieth century in the United States. Theories of baldness centered on racial claims-making; doctors and scientists described different racial groups as unevenly susceptible to alopecia (biological hair loss), and they referred to mechanisms of hair loss as resulting from race-specific qualities. The language of baldness, and efforts to understand the condition's causes and cures, used racial contrasts and racial logic. In this way, baldness became part of the schema through which race was discussed and understood.

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‘Between Stage and Page’

La vida es sueño as Comic Book

Daniela Kuschel


This study analyses how the comic book La vida es sueño (Life Is a Dream) by Ricardo Vílbor, Alberto Sanz and Mario Ceballos transposes the form and content of Calderón de la Barca's dramatic text La vida es sueño (1635–1636) into the multimodal discourse of the comic. Drawing on Irina Rajewsky's theory of ‘intermediality’ and the concept of mise en scène, introduced as an analytical tool for comics studies by Geraine D'Arcy, the findings present evidence that the design strategies of the adaptation are based on a convergence of the modalities of theatre and comic, and on the imitation of the poetic visuality and musicality of the original via the comic's media-specific means. The resulting comic offers a sophisticated but nonetheless highly accessible reading of the philosophical, political, religious and ethical discourse of the Spanish literary classic.

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Beyond the Education of Desire

The Utopia of Councils in Abensour

Paul Mazzocchi


While critical utopias sought to rescue the political import of utopia, recently scholars have questioned their overemphasis on literary forms and a disempowering pluralism. Challenging the applicability of these claims to one of the instigators of critical utopias, I provide a political reading of Miguel Abensour's understanding of utopia and connect this to councils as a concrete institutional infrastructure. This begins with a re-reading of his influential conception of the ‘education of desire’ in relation to the simulacrum as a utopian ‘model’ that, in rejecting identity-thinking, refuses to reduce utopias to a blueprint. I then turn to conceptualising the utopia of councils through the simulacrum on two fronts: first, as a form subject to innovation in the context of the dialectic of emancipation; second, as a content that aims to both ‘democratise utopia’ by embracing plurality and ‘utopianize democracy’ by expanding the realm of democratic space.

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Book Review

Katie Masters

Michiel Baas, Muscular India: Masculinity, Mobility and the New Middle Class (Chennai: Context, 2020), 313 pp. ISBN: 9789389648218. Hardback, $19.79.

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Book Reviews

Tom Scott-Smith, Matthew A. L. Gault, Joshua Falcon, Phaedra Douzina-Bakalaki, and Bilal Nadeem

Barbara Harrell-Bond, Imposing Aid: Emergency Assistance to Refugees, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 440 pp., 1986.

Rosemary Harris, Prejudice and Tolerance in Ulster: A Study of Neighbours and ‘Strangers’ in a Border Community. Manchester: University Press, 234 pp., 1972.

Allan D. Coult, Psychedelic Anthropology: The Study of Man Through the Manifestation of the Mind. Philadelphia: Dorrance & Company, 296 pp., 1977.

Eirini Papadaki, The Politics of Kinship: Adoption in Contemporary Greece. Athens: Alexandria Publications, 196 pp, 2021.

Christos Lynteris, Visual Plague: The Emergence of Epidemic Photography. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, 2022. 322 pp., 6 × 9 in, 44 figures.

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Book Reviews

Stephen Milder, Adam R. Seipp, Jeffrey Luppes, Matthias Dilling, Lotte Houwink ten Cate, and Randall Newnham

Jennifer Allen, Sustainable Utopias: The Art and Politics of Hope in Germany (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2022)

Kevin T. Hall, Terror Flyers: The Lynching of American Airmen in Nazi Germany (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2021)

Michael Hughes, The Anarchy of Nazi Memorabilia: From Things of Tyranny to Troubled Treasure (London: Routledge, 2022)

Mark Edward Ruff and Thomas Großbölting, eds., Germany and the Confessional Divide: Religious Tensions and Political Culture, 1871–1989 (New York: Berghahn Books, 2022)

Christoph Lorke, Liebe verwalten: “Ausländerehen” in Deutschland 1870–1945 [Managing love: “Foreign marriages” in Germany 1870–1945] (Paderborn: Brill | Schöningh, 2020)

John P. Miglietta, Hitler's Allies: The Ramifications of Nazi Alliance Politics in World War II (London: Routledge, 2022)

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Book Reviews

Yunnan Ye, Mariske Westendorp, Remus Gabriel Anghel, Dominic Martin, and Dhruv Gautam

Nucho, Joanne R. 2016. Everyday Sectarianism in Urban Lebanon: Infrastructures, Public Services, and Power. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. 192 pp. Ebook: US$29.95. ISBN: 9781400883004.

Schorch, Philipp, Martin Saxer and Marlen Elders (eds.). 2020. Exploring Materiality and Connectivity in Anthropology and Beyond. London: UCL Press. 282 pp. Pb.: £20.00. ISBN: 9781787357495.

Cvajner, Martina. 2019. Soviet Signoras. Personal and Collective Transformations in East European Migration. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. 279 pp. Pb.: US$30.00. ISBN: 978-0226662398.

McGonigle, Ian. 2021. Genomic Citizenship: The Molecularization of Identity in the Contemporary Middle East. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 220 pp. Pb.: US$75.00. ISBN: 9780262542944.

Sax, William and Claudia Lang. 2021. The Movement for Global Mental Health: Critical Views from South and Southeast Asia. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press. 346 pp. Hb.: €129.00. ISBN: 9789463721622.

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Book Reviews

Çağla Ay, Tayeba Batool, Arita Chakrabarty, Bill Derman, Ipsita Dey, Alexandra Holdbrook, Amy Leigh Johnson, Wangui Kimari, Daniel J. Read, Sailen Routray, Gabe Schwartzman, Noah Theriault, and Caroline White-Nockleby

Chao, Sophie, Karin Bolender, and Eben Kirksey, eds. 2022. The Promise of Multispecies Justice. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. 284 pp. ISBN 978-1478018896.

Ranganathan, Malini, David L. Pike, and Sapana Doshi. 2023. Corruption Plots: Stories, Ethics, and Publics of the Late Capitalist City. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. 294 pp. ISBN: 978-1501768750.

Liboiron, Max. 2021. Pollution Is Colonialism. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. 196 pp. ISBN: 978-1478014133.

Hoag, Colin. 2022. The Fluvial Imagination on Lesotho's Water-Export Economy. Berkeley: University of California Press. ISBN 9780520386358 ebook.

King, Tiffany Lethabo. 2019. The Black Shoals: Offshore Formations of Black and Native Studies. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. 284 pp. ISBN 978-1478005681.

Ameli, Katharina. 2022. Multispecies Ethnography: Methodology of a Holistic Research Approach of Humans, Animals, Nature and Culture. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books. 149 pp. ISBN 978-1666911923.

Zee, Jerry C. 2021. Continent in Dust: Experiments in a Chinese Weather System. Oakland, California: University of California Press. 311 pp. ISBN 9780520384088.

Ferdinand, Malcolm. 2021. Decolonial Ecology: Thinking from the Caribbean World. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. 300 pp. ISBN: 978-1-509-54624-4.

Ogden, Laura. 2021. Loss and Wonder at the World's End. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. 200 pp. ISBN: 978-1-4780-1456-0.

Hathaway, Michael J. 2022. What a Mushroom Lives For: Matsutake and the Worlds They Make. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. 270 pp. ISBN 978-0691225883.

Harrison, Jill Lindsey. 2019. From the Inside Out: The Fight for Environmental Justice within Government Agencies. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.

Stoetzer, Bettina. 2022. Ruderal City: Ecologies of Migration, Race, and Nature in Berlin. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. 328 pp. ISBN 9781478018605.

Turner, James Morton, 2022. Charged: A History of Batteries and Lessons for a Clean Energy Future. Seattle: University of Washington Press. 234 pp. ISBN 9780295750248.

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Book Reviews

Kevin Irakoze, Mandisi Majavu, and Nathalie Etoke

Nathalie Etoke, Black Existential Freedom. Roman & Littlefield, 2023, 156 pp. ISBN: 978-538173060 (pbk).

Tendayi Sithole, Refiguring in Black. Polity Press, 2023, VII +158 pp. ISBN: 978-1509557028 (pbk).

T Hasan Johnson, Solutions for Anti-Black Misandry, Flat Blackness, and Black Male Death: The Black Masculinist Turn. Routledge, 2023, 131pp. ISBN: 978-1032529592.

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Book Reviews

Louise Jashil R. Sonido and Ed McKeon

Acciari, Monia & Philipp Rhensius, eds. 2023. Politics of Curatorship: Collective and Affective Interventions. Bern, Switzerland: Norient Books.

Voegelin, Salomé. 2023. Uncurating Sound: Knowledge with Voice and Hands. London: Bloomsbury Academic.