"Feenin": POSTHUMAN VOICES IN CONTEMPORARY BLACK POPULAR MUSIC

"Feenin": POSTHUMAN VOICES IN CONTEMPORARY BLACK POPULAR MUSIC Alexander G. Weheliye This essay takes up N. Katherine Hayles’s challenge to seize this critical moment in order “to contest what the posthuman means . . . before the trains of thought it embodies have been laid down so firmly that it would take dynamite to change them,” by closely examining her recent text, How We Became Posthuman.1 I do this because Hayles’s volume provides the most elaborate history and theory of the posthuman, even while her framework embodies the “trains of thought” she herself queries. In other words, Hayles’s own formulations are on the way to becoming hegemonic, at least in the discrepant disciplines in the humanities and social sciences that make up the postdiscipline of cultural studies. I begin with two contentions. The first concerns the literal and virtual whiteness of cybertheory.2 The second establishes at the very least an aporetic relationship between New World black cultures and the category of the “human.” In addition, this essay also seeks to realign the hegemony of visual media in academic considerations of virtuality by shifting the emphasis to the aural, allowing us to conjecture some of the manifold ways in which black cultural production engages with informational technologies. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Social Text Duke University Press

"Feenin": POSTHUMAN VOICES IN CONTEMPORARY BLACK POPULAR MUSIC

Social Text, Volume 20 (2 71) – Jun 1, 2002

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2002 by Duke University Press
ISSN
0164-2472
eISSN
1527-1951
DOI
10.1215/01642472-20-2_71-21
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Alexander G. Weheliye This essay takes up N. Katherine Hayles’s challenge to seize this critical moment in order “to contest what the posthuman means . . . before the trains of thought it embodies have been laid down so firmly that it would take dynamite to change them,” by closely examining her recent text, How We Became Posthuman.1 I do this because Hayles’s volume provides the most elaborate history and theory of the posthuman, even while her framework embodies the “trains of thought” she herself queries. In other words, Hayles’s own formulations are on the way to becoming hegemonic, at least in the discrepant disciplines in the humanities and social sciences that make up the postdiscipline of cultural studies. I begin with two contentions. The first concerns the literal and virtual whiteness of cybertheory.2 The second establishes at the very least an aporetic relationship between New World black cultures and the category of the “human.” In addition, this essay also seeks to realign the hegemony of visual media in academic considerations of virtuality by shifting the emphasis to the aural, allowing us to conjecture some of the manifold ways in which black cultural production engages with informational technologies.

Journal

Social TextDuke University Press

Published: Jun 1, 2002

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