On Freedom: Four Songs Of Care And Constraint
ISBN: 1644450623
EAN13: 9781644450628
Language: English
Release Date: Sep 7, 2021
Pages: 288
Weight: 1.737243 lbs.
Format: Hardcover
Select Format Format: Hardcover Select Conditions Condition: Good


Format: Hardcover

Condition: Good

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Book Overview

An expansive, exhilarating work of criticism by one of the most significant writers of our day

So often deployed as a jingoistic, even menacing rallying cry, or limited by a focus on passing moments of liberation, the rhetoric of freedom both rouses and repels. Does it remain key to our autonomy, justice, and well-being, or is freedom's long star turn coming to a close? Does a continued obsession with the term enliven and emancipate, or reflect a deepening nihilism (or both)? On Freedom examines such questions by tracing the concept's complexities in four distinct realms: art, sex, drugs, and climate.

Drawing on a vast range of material, from critical theory to pop culture to the intimacies and plain exchanges of daily life, Maggie Nelson explores how we might think, experience, or talk about freedom in ways responsive to the conditions of our day. Her abiding interest lies in ongoing practices of freedom by which we negotiate our interrelation with--indeed, our inseparability from--others, with all the care and constraint that entails, while accepting difference and conflict as integral to our communion.

For Nelson, thinking publicly through the knots in our culture--from recent art-world debates to the turbulent legacies of sexual liberation, from the painful paradoxes of addiction to the lure of despair in the face of the climate crisis--is itself a practice of freedom, a means of forging fortitude, courage, and company. On Freedom is an invigorating, essential book for challenging times.

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Book Reviews (3)

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   Nuanced and Worthwhile
While I couldn t hang with the chapter on Art, those on Sex, Medicines and Climate were mind-blowing. I, myself, was frustrated at times by the author's lack of commitment to certainty, and yet I realized when I read the book that this is exactly how my own mind tends to work. Once I committed herself to staying with the unraveling and holding the many paradoxes she presents between freedom and limitation, I found myself richly rewarded with a broadened perspective on very complicated topics. Her discussion of intimate encounters and freedom is perhaps the best, most in-depth analysis of this sexual material that I have ever encountered.
   Freedom is an active choice, not a final destination.
Really insightful and challenging, how freedom is often used as a justification for whichever action one may desire. Academic, yet readable and not Pushing An Agenda ''. Book club material from Good Book... good conversation and debate sure to ensue!
   Sections on audio version missing from hardcover copy?
I bought the audio version so that I could listen while I painted. Shortly after, I bought the hardcover so that I could digest the work more thoroughly.