Palgrave Macmillan

  • Hauntology

    Katy Shaw

    Post-millennial writings function as a useful prism through which we can understand contemporary English culture and its compulsion to revisit the immediate past. The critical practice of hauntology turns to the past in order to make sense of the present, to understand how we got to this place and how to build a better future. Since the Year 2000, popular culture has been inundated with representations of those who occupy a space between being and non-being and defy ontological criteria.  This Pivot explores a range of contemporary English literatures - from the poetry of Simon Armitage and the drama of Jez Butterworth, to the fiction of Zadie Smith and the stories of David Peace - that collectively unite to represent a twenty-first century world  full of specters, reminiscence and representations of spectral encounters. These specters become visible and significant as they interact with a range of social, political and economic discourses that continue to speak to the contemporary period.  The enduring fascination with the spectral offers valuable insights into a contemporary English culture in which spectral manifestations signal towards larger social anxieties as well as to specific historical events and recurrent cultural preoccupations. The specter confronts the contemporary with the necessity of participation, encouraging the realisation that we must engage with it in order to create meaning. Narrative agency is the primary motivating force of its return, and the repetition of the specter functions to highlight new meanings and perspectives.  Harnessing hauntology as a lens through which to consider the specters haunting twenty-first century English writings, this Pivot examines the emergence of a vein of hauntological literature that profiles the pervasive presence of the past in our new millennium. 

  • Here is a universal biology that draws upon the contributions of Aristotle, Kant, and Hegel to unravel the mystery of life and conceive what is essential to living things anywhere they may arise. The book develops a philosopher's guide to life in the universe, conceiving how nature becomes a biosphere in which life can emerge, what are the basic life processes common to any organism, how evolution can give rise to the different possible forms of life, and what distinguishes the essential life forms from one another. 

  • This book addresses the many avenues that are still left unexplored when it comes to our understanding of the First World War in the Low Countries. With the ongoing the centenary of the Great War, many events have been organized in the United Kingdom to commemorate its military events, its socio-political consequences, and its cultural legacy. Of these events, very few have paid attention to the fates of Belgium or the Netherlands, even though it was the invasion of Belgium in August 1914 that was the catalyst for Great Britain declaring war. The occupation of Belgium had long-term consequences for its people, but much of the military and social history of the Western Front concentrates on northern France, and the Netherlands is largely forgotten as a nation affected by the First World War. By opening the field beyond the military and beyond the front, this collection explores the interdisciplinary and international nature of the Great War.

  • The book considers some of the solutions proposed by Muslim activists and thinkers in their attempts to renew (tajdid) their ways of life and thought in accord with the demands of the age in which they lived. The two ways of reacting are studied - the movements led by men of action and inspiration, and the thoughts of quietist scholars who laid greater emphasis on calm continuity.  These two streams have often collided and particularly so in the contemporary age of greater violence. Other related problems are also considered: how a non-Muslim should regard the religion of the `other'; the ways modernization have been dealt with; and the two root causes of Muslim `rage' today - the invasions of the West and the failure to reach an equitable solution to the problem of Palestine. Building on the author's sixty-year experience researching the history of Islam, the book will appeal to students and scholars across the fields of Islamic studies, religious history and Middle Eastern politics.

  • This book describes the existential threats facing the global water systems from population growth and economic development, unsustainable use, environmental change, and weak and fragmented governance. It argues that `business-as-usual' water science and management cannot solve global water problems because today's water systems are increasingly complex and face uncertain future conditions. Instead, a more holistic, strategic, agile and publically engaged process of water decision making is needed.Building Resilience for Uncertain Water Futures emphasises the importance of adaptation through a series of case studies of cities, regions, and communities that have experimented with anticipatory policy-making, scenario development, and public engagement. By shifting perspective from an emphasis on management to one of adaptation, the book emphasizes the capacity to manage uncertainties, the need for cross-sector coordination, and mechanisms for engaging stakeholder with differing goals and conflict resolution. This book will be a useful resource for students and academics seeking a better understanding of sustainable water use, water policy and water resources management. 

  • The 21st century has born witness to myriad changes in the way the world is secured from the many emergencies that continually threaten to disrupt it. This book concentrates on two such changes. First, it takes stock of the ever-increasing development and diversification of data and digital technologies that security organisations have at their disposal. Secondly, it examines how these digital devices have fostered a new direction in which security agencies primarily conceive of emergencies as so many risks of the future. Emergency governance has undergone what might be called an anticipatory turn here, with digitally rendered and imagined scenes of future contingency becoming cause and justification for intervention in the here and now. Rather than scrutinising this turn at its most spectacular heights in the domains, for instance, of warfare or counter-terrorism, the book explores the facilitation of risk governance through digital technologies in a more quotidian incarnation; namely by tracing the steps that the United Kingdom's Fire and Rescue Service (FRS) take to govern fire emergencies whose potential has been identified but have yet to unfold. Delving into the FRS, the book maps out a digital infrastructure that includes various software, institutional processes, multiple forms of risk calculation but also human beings, relations and consciousness and an array of material spaces in which these things exist. Accentuated here is how these components assemble to produce projections of future emergencies on a number of sensorial registers. This infrastructure is shown, in turn, to inform and shape a catalogue of refined modes of action through which interventions on future emergencies are made in the present. Engaging in depth with this infrastructure, the FRS provides an understanding of risk as a lived relation, risk as an organisational ethos whose liveliness is founded upon and reverberates through the relations existing between those people and things operating in the FRS to make sense of potential fire emergencies. Using the concept of lived relation as a foundation, the book develops a critical understanding of anticipatory governance by grasping its resonance with issues emanating in the wider field of security, showing how security figures as a set of practices that rely upon and cultivates affective conditions, that enrols the force of elements like fire into its institutional arrangement, that draw on an array of knowledges to exercise power and, in the process, that instantiate new forms of subjectivity.