Recently the distinguished feminist theorist Elizabeth Grosz has turned her critical acumen toward rethinking time and duration. Time Travels brings her trailblazing essays together to show how reconceptualizing temporality transforms and revitalizes key scholarly and political projects. In these essays, Grosz demonstrates how imagining different relations between the past, present, and future alters understandings of social and scientific projects ranging from theories of justice to evolutionary biology, and she explores the radical implications of the reordering of these projects for feminist, queer, and critical race theories.
Grosz’s reflections on how rethinking time might generate new understandings of nature, culture, subjectivity, and politics are wide ranging. She moves from a compelling argument that Charles Darwin’s notion of biological and cultural evolution can potentially benefit feminist, queer, and antiracist agendas to an exploration of modern jurisprudence’s reliance on the notion that justice is only immanent in the future and thus is always beyond reach. She examines Henri Bergson’s philosophy of duration in light of the writings of Gilles Deleuze, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, and William James, and she discusses issues of sexual difference, identity, pleasure, and desire in relation to the thought of Deleuze, Friedrich Nietzsche, Michel Foucault, and Luce Irigaray. Together these essays demonstrate the broad scope and applicability of Grosz’s thinking about time as an undertheorized but uniquely productive force.
"[Grosz's] promotion of a reconceived biology is pertinent not only for feminist theory but also for cultural theory and literary theory more generally."—Randall Knoper, College Literature
“Grosz offers an alternative to the socially constructed identity and sexualities by calling for an examination of how inhuman forces constitute them.”—Catherine Villanueva Gardner, American Philosophical Association Newsletter
“In its drive towards the future – a future seen as radically open and indeterminable – Grosz’s work provides a positive and invigorating vision of the role of cultural theory. It also offers a compelling re-envisioning of the present, and the present’s relationship to the future. The structure of the book, as a collection of connected but disparate essays, means that it does not, and does not attempt to, develop a totalising theory of temporality. Rather, it opens up new directions both in how we think about theory and the consequences – and futures – of cultural and feminist theory.”—Karen Hall, Limina
Part I. Nature, Culture, and the Future
1. Darwinism and Feminism: Preliminary Investigations into a Possible Alliance 13
2. Darwin and the Ontology of Life 35
3. The Nature of Culture 43
Part II. Law, Justice, and the Future
4. The Time of Violence: Derrida, Deconstruction, and Value 55
5. Drucilla Cornell, Identity, and the â€śEvolutionâ€ť of Politics 71
Part III. Philosophy, Knowledge, and the Future
6. Deleuze, Bergson, and the Virtual 93
7. Merleau-Ponty, Bergson, and the Question of Ontology 113
8. The Thing 131
9. Prosthetic Objects 145
Part IV. Identity, Sexual Difference, and the Future
10. The Time of Thought 155
11. The Force of Sexual Difference 171
12. (Inhuman) Forces: Power, Pleasure, and Desire 185
13. The Future of Female Sexuality 197
About The Author:
Elizabeth Grosz is Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at Rutgers University. She is the author of The Nick of Time: Politics, Evolution, and the Untimely (also published by Duke University Press); Architecture from the Outside: Essays on Virtual and Real Space; Space, Time, and Perversion: Essays on the Politics of Bodies; and Volatile Bodies: Toward a Corporeal Feminism. She is the editor of Becomings: Explorations in Time, Memory, and Futures.