Black and Blur – Fred Moten
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The book in question has many words but I am stuck on these two by sheer magnetic awkwardness. How the register abruptly shifts, the essay suddenly looking up to stare at the reader. How the pronoun cartwheels even as the interrogative tries to stay still. Fifteen years of essays gleaned from academic journals, exhibition catalogs, critical anthologies and miscellanea, the sentences here range wildly but also obsessively circle—musicology, Marx, the middle passage—getting at but decidedly not to a breathtaking glimpse of blackness. But I am not convinced it will work out. The essays encounter things in the world and do the work of criticism. But the book accumulates and undermines the distinction between essays.
Black and Blur. Fred Moten. In these interrelated essays, Moten attends to entanglement, the blurring of borders, and other practices that trouble notions of self-determination and sovereignty within political and aesthetic realms. Moten holds that blackness encompasses a range of social, aesthetic, and theoretical insurgencies that respond to a shared modernity founded upon the sociological catastrophe of the transatlantic slave trade and settler colonialism. In so doing, he unsettles normative ways of reading, hearing, and seeing, thereby reordering the senses to create new means of knowing. Not In Between. Interpolation and Interpellation.