The Integral Nature of Things: Critical Reflections on the Present

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9780415831383: The Integral Nature of Things: Critical Reflections on the Present

The world is an interdependent whole of which everything is an integral, complexly related, part. Yet current ways of thinking, and being, persistently separate social phenomena and the individual self from the multiple dimensions with which they are interconnected. The Integral Nature of Things examines this revealing paradox and its consequences in a variety of sites: everyday language, labour, advertising, technology, post-structuralist theory, political rhetoric, urban planning, sex, neoliberal globalisation. Mani demonstrates how even though the interrelations between things are obscured by the ruling paradigm, the facts of relationality and indivisibility continually assert themselves. The book interweaves prose with poetry and sociocultural analysis with observational accounts to offer an alternative framework for addressing aspects of the cognitive, cultural, political, and ethical crisis we face today.

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About the Author:

Lata Mani is a feminist historian and cultural critic.

Review:

These are deeply felt, lucidly written, vignettes on a tremendous range of ideas ― of nature, religion, consciousness, work, sex, integrity, duty, suffering, the market, corruption, the fate of the Left. There is acute observation and probing analysis, poetry and prose, each voiced in turn. It is hard to say what this genre is and that is an essential part of its charm. When critical, it is resolutely but effortlessly gentle; when constructive it is without the strain or artifice of systematic theory. The Integral Nature of Things brings much instruction and a uniquely quiet form of pleasure.

Akeel Bilgrami, Johnsonian Professor of Philosophy, Columbia University

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