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Leo Bersani

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Journal Article
differences (2014) 25 (2): 62–100.
Published: 01 September 2014
...Mikko Tuhkanen “Homomonadology” outlines the emergence and elaboration of Leo Bersani’s onto-ethics/aesthetics over the past half a century, focusing particularly on his interest in the shared references to Leibnizian metaphysics in twentieth-century philosophical and literary texts. The essay...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 1–5.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Jacques Khalip; John Paul Ricco The editors’ introduction to this special issue of difference s titled Syntax of Thought: Reading Leo Bersani describes the issue’s focus on the speculative importance of aesthetics in Leo Bersani’s scholarship, especially his attention to a “syntax of thought...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 175–182.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Julia Jarcho This brief article considers Leo Bersani’s descriptions of Maggie Verver, a character in Henry James’s novel The Golden Bowl , in relation to some of Bersani’s famous arguments about sexuality. Observing that Bersani’s presentation of Maggie in “The Jamesian Lie” and elsewhere makes...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 276–282.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Zahid R. Chaudhary; Robyn Wiegman Responding to the theme of this special issue’s engagement with the work of Leo Bersani, “Un/reading” tracks the itinerary of a single quotation across the four appearances it makes in published work between 2011 and 2018. While it is easy to query whether Bersani...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 267–275.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Forest Pyle A radical identification predicated on unlikeness: this is how Leo Bersani understands the singular mode of desiring that Emily Brontë invents in her incomparable novel. With Catherine and Heathcliff, Wuthering Heights offers new “forms of being,” untethered to the world (of society...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 135–143.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Andrea Gadberry This essay remarks how a missing “hand” in Leo Bersani’s The Culture of Redemption illuminates more than a rhetorical strategy; with it, Bersani undermines the problem of “incongruent counterparts” made famous by Kant. While Bersani’s “hand” replies most plainly to the logic...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 228–234.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Joseph Litvak Leo Bersani was an enormously seductive critic, and he frequently wrote about seductiveness, beginning with his first book, Marcel Proust: The Fictions of Life and Art . This essay focuses on a passage in that book where Bersani discusses Proust’s character, the Baron de Charlus...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 27–34.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Joel Faflak This essay examines Intimacies , structured as an asymmetrical dialogue between two of the most astringent commentators of Freud and psychoanalysis: Leo Bersani and Adam Phillips. This dialogue takes place at both the intimate and extimate limits of what Bersani calls impersonal...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 209–216.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Ryan Dohoney In their ruminations on Mark Rothko’s Chapel paintings, Leo Bersani and Ulysse Dutoit posit a mode of aesthetic consciousness produced by acts of renunciation. Rothko deliberately relinquishes his paintings’ visibility and thus, like Beckett and Resnais, impoverishes a primary feature...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 95–103.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Bobby Benedicto This essay examines the role of failure in the work of Leo Bersani through the lens of self-shattering, impersonal narcissism, and castration. It revisits Bersani’s account of narcissism and masochism in “Erotic Assumptions” and critiques his subsequent shift toward impersonal...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 150–155.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Lisa Downing In Baudelaire and Freud (1977), Leo Bersani posits that psychoanalysis offers a way of understanding sexuality as characterized by the mobility of fantasy, rather than by the content of fetishes or sexual identities, and that this mobility offers the “potential for explosive...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 113–118.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Amber Jamilla Musser Written in 1987 in response to the aids emergency unfolding in the United States, Leo Bersani’s “Is the Rectum a Grave?” is often described as an early entry into the strain of queer theory that offers queerness as tarrying in abjection, failure, and antisociality. This essay...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 51–59.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Ramsey McGlazer This essay studies figures of arrest and mobility, imprisonment and release, and “rigor and extravagance” in Leo Bersani’s writings. Focusing on The Forms of Violence , a study of late Assyrian sculpture coauthored with Ulysse Dutoit and first published in 1985, the essay at once...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 44–50.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Kris Cohen In Leo Bersani’s essay “Sociality and Sexuality,” bracketing emerges as a critical procedure for sensing and for practicing nonsovereign forms of sociality. Following Foucault’s desire to discover modes of relation, forms of the homosexual, that do not yet have a world...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 165–174.
Published: 01 May 2023
...David L. Clark Leo Bersani is well known for making a case for the pleasures of sameness. But “to circulate within sameness,” he notes, “we must first of all welcome [ . . . ] lessness.” This essay explores that hospitable gesture in Bersani’s work, focusing on the self-abnegating practice...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 283–293.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Damon Ross Young Leo Bersani’s writings on aesthetics, often coauthored with Ulysse Dutoit, repeatedly deploy the trope of withdrawal, finding in the aesthetic works they discuss, such as Jean-Luc Godard’s film Contempt , a paradoxical double movement of bringing into view while projecting...
FIGURES
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 89–94.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Elissa Marder In “Cradling,” a chapter of Baudelaire and Freud , Leo Bersani shows how desire rocks the self. Desire always manifests as a movement that draws the self both toward and away from the object that excites it. Rocking simultaneously invokes infantile erotic enjoyment, an adult sexual...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 191–199.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Tom Holert Aiming at rendering “somewhat irrelevant” the “question of sadism” in the critique of film’s “seductive epistemological promise,” Leo Bersani and Ulysse Dutoit argued for a “participation in the film” that is “at once self-reflexive and self-shattering.” Such participation may bring...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 156–164.
Published: 01 May 2023
...John Paul Ricco This essay considers Leo Bersani’s concept of “incongruity” as a key term in his thinking of ethical relation and, specifically, as a description of the desynchronized movement and impersonal configuration of bodies, psyches, thoughts, and things, in which the formal mobilization...
Journal Article
differences (2023) 34 (1): 20–26.
Published: 01 May 2023
...Adrian Rifkin This essay argues that Leo Bersani’s immersion in a discipline of reading theoretical and psychoanalytic texts and literature with close critical attention effectively writes out his observations from an epistemology of being gay. His attention to visual materials is similarly acute...