Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Violent Politics of the Lit Review

It's slowly dawning on me that the lit review of a grant proposal is counter-intuitive to a graduate student (or to this one, anyway) because it must maim and wound each item to make it fit into its appropriate bullet point. This violates every single principle we've learned about honest critical reading. A lit review is an act of intellectual violence—it is a putsch, a coup. Like all violence, its success is measured not by its erudition, but by whether or not you get away with it. It is utterly political.

Thank you, Nelly, for having me read Latour.