Monday, May 25, 2009

Joseph K & Joshist dossiers

[It was this fraught relationship between the symbolic and personal identity that Kafka so effectively investigated in both The Castle and The Trial. In both of those texts Joseph K’s identity– an identity marked only by an initial or an abbreviation –is entirely mysterious and his place within the social system or the symbolic order is entirely inscrutable. Joseph K’s plight is not extraordinary, but is characteristic of all social and cultural life. What does it mean to be a man? What does it mean to be a woman? What does it mean to be a professor or a salesman or an engineer or an American or straight or gay or bisexual or a Christian or Muslim, etc., etc., etc. No matter where we look, we find these fraught and precarious identities where the essence of these identities remains in question and where our own performance of these identities perpetually remains fraught. Orientalism
from Larval Subjects by larvalsubjects]

[The 59-year-old Congressman from Nathdwara is said to have impressed Mr Gandhi with his techno-savvy presentation of data, skill for political analysis and his style of speaking out his mind. Mr Joshi brought in the science of micro-managing elections in Rajasthan Congress. In 2008, he prepared dossiers on each assembly constituency, detailing the caste, gender profiles. Based on these, the Congress crafted its social coalition strategies and devised ways of welding contradictory caste interests. Bharat, India must merge: CP Joshi
Economic Times - 25 May 2009, 0320 hrs IST, Urmi A Goswami, ET Bureau]

Now that P.C. Joshi (1907-1980) is forgotten, C.P. Joshi is the new kid on the block whose "science of micro-managing elections" has worked wonders. The Fascist implications of such a science is frightening, however. [TNM]

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