The Institute for Comparative Literature and Society and Columbia University Press present a panel discussion with interviewees from "The Present as History: Critical Perspectives on Global Power," moderated by the book's author, Nermeen Shaikh.
"The Present as History" offers a rare opportunity for renowned scholars to address current issues of global power and post-election America in both historical and political terms- Institute for Comparative Literature and Society
Talal Asad is an anthropologist at the City University of New York who has made important theoretical contributions to Post-Colonialism, Christianity, Islam, and Ritual Studies and has recently called for, and initiated, an anthropology of Secularism.
Using a genealogical method developed by Friedrich Nietzsche and made prominent by Michel Foucault, Asad "complicates terms of comparison that many anthropologists, theologians, philosophers, and political scientists receive as the unexamined background of thinking, judgment, and action as such. By doing so, he creates clearings, opening new possibilities for communication, connection, and creative invention where opposition or studied indifference prevailed."
Partha Chatterjee is a Subaltern Studies and Postcolonial scholar.
He is a multi-disciplinary scholar, with special emphasis on political science, anthropology and history.
Sanjay G. Reddy
Sanjay G. Reddy, assistant professor of economics, joined the faculty of Barnard in 2000. At Barnard, Professor Reddy is also affiliated with the human rights studies program. He also teaches in the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University.
Professor Reddy's areas of research and teaching include development economics, international economics, and economics and philosophy. His work has been supported by fellowships from the Center for Ethics and the Professions (Harvard University), the Center for Population and Development Studies (Harvard University), and the Center for Human Values (Princeton University).
Professor Reddy has consulted extensively for United Nations organizations, NGOs, and the World Bank.
Professor Reddy has been on the editorial advisory boards for Development, Ethics and International Affairs; the European Journal of Development Research; and the Review of Income and Wealth.
Nermeen Shaikh is the Managing Editor of Asia Society Online.
Her book The Present as History: Critical Perspectives on Global Power has just been published by Columbia University Press. She studied politics at Cambridge University in England and at Queen’s University in Canada.
Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak
Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak (born February 24, 1942) is an Indian literary critic and theorist. She is best known for the article "Can the Subaltern Speak?", considered a founding text of postcolonialism, and for her translation of Jacques Derrida's Of Grammatology.
Spivak teaches at Columbia University, where she was tenured as University Professor Columbia's highest rank in March 2007. A prolific scholar, she travels widely and gives lectures around the world. She is also a visiting faculty member at the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta.
While looking for historical parallels to Barack Obama, Talal Asad finds similarities between the "enormous infatuation" and nationalism associated with Adolf Hitler during the 1930s in Germany and Obama’s election night acceptance speech "disquieting."
However, he also finds Obama's goal of unification similar to that of Nelson Mandela's.