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Cornell University    
  Feb 21, 2018
Courses of Study 2017-2018
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AMST 4313 - [The Beautiful Struggle: Radical Aesthetics and Politics]

(crosslisted) ENGL 4313  
Not offered 2017-2018. 4 credits. Student option grading.

Permission of instructor required.

B. Maxwell.

Now let us begin.  Now let us rededicate ourselves to the long and bitter, but beautiful, struggle for a new world. The course will begin from the declaration made by Martin Luther King, Jr. that the struggle for a new world, inevitably political, is also beautiful, that is, that it is involved with aesthetics. “The struggle is beautiful, I’m too strong for your slavery,” raps Talib Kweli, thirty-seven years after King’s speech.  What did King mean, and what have others in American culture meant, when they invoked beauty and struggle in the same breath?  What have the arts and radical politics had to do with each other?  When have radical politics and experimental aesthetics needed each other?  We will work with all forms of the arts; discussion will figure heavily in this effort; political and aesthetic theory will surface regularly.

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