Fredric Jameson Intellectual Autobiography

Fredric Jameson

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Fredric Jameson and Ramón del Castillo
Fredric Jameson, direction

Fredric Jameson, Professor of Comparative Literature and Romance Studies at Duke University and one of the most internationally influential North-American philosophers in recent years, will look back over his career with the philosophy lecturer Ramón del Castillo.

Fredric Jameson has examined subjects including modernism and postmodernism or cultural evolution in the age of globalisation. His output covers architecture, painting, film and science fiction literature. In 2014 he received the Truman Capote Award for Literary Criticism for his book The Antinomies of Realism, which analyses Tolstoy, Zola and Pérez Galdós, among others.

Lecture cosponsored by the PhD program of the Faculty of Philosophy of the National Distance Education University (UNED).

(In English with simultaneous translation into Spanish)

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  1. Fredric JamesonFredric Jameson

    Nacido en 1934 en Cleveland (Ohio, Estados Unidos), estudió letras en Haverford College y en la Universidad de Yale, donde se doctoró en 1959 con una tesis sobre Sartre. Comenzó la actividad docente en la Universidad de Harvard (1959-1967) y la prosiguió en la de California en San Diego (1967-1976), Yale (1976-1983), California en Santa Cruz (1983-1985) y, por último, en la Universidad de Duke (1985-), donde actualmente es catedrático de Literatura Comparada y Estudios Romances. Ha sido profesor visitante en diversas universidades extranjeras, entre ellas las de Peking y Shenzhen (China).

    Entre sus publicaciones cabe citar Marxism and Form (1971), The Prision-House of Language: A Critical Account of Structuralism and Russian Formalism (1972), The Political Unconscious (1981), Late Marxism (1990), Signatures of the Visible (1990), Postmodernism or the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism (1991), The Geopolitical Aesthetic, or, Cinema and Space in the World System (1992), The Seeds of Time (1994), The Cultural Turn. Selected Writings on the Postmodern, 1983-1998 (1998), A Singular Modernity: Essay on the Ontology of the Present (2002), Archaeologies of the Future: The Desire Called Utopia and Other Science Fictions (2005), The Modernist Papers (2007), Jameson on Jameson: Conversations on Cultural Marxism (2007), The Ideologies of Theory (2009), Valences of the Dialectic (2009), The Hegel Variations: On the Phenomenology of Spirit (2010), Representing Capital: A Reading of Volume One (2011) y The Antinomies of Realism (2013).

    Gran parte de su obra ha sido traducida al español: La cárcel del lenguaje (1980), Documentos de cultura. Documentos de barbarie (1989), El posmodernismo o la lógica cultural del capitalismo avanzado (1991), La estética geopolítica (1995), Imaginario y Simbólico en Lacan (1995), Teoría de la postmodernidad (1996), Periodizar los 60 (1997), La postmodernidad y el mercado (1998), Estudios culturales: Reflexiones sobre el multiculturalismo (1998, con Slavoj Žižek), El giro cultural. Escritos seleccionados sobre el postmodernismo 1983-1998 (1999), Las semillas del tiempo (2000), Una modernidad singular (2004), Arqueologías del futuro. El deseo llamado utopía y otras aproximaciones de ciencia ficción (2009), Representing Capital. El desempleo: una lectura de El Capital (2011 y 2013) y Valencias de la dialéctica (2013), entre otros.

    Ha sido galardonado en 2014 con el Premio Truman Capote de Crítica Literaria por su último libro The Antinomies of Realism (2013), y recientemente con los premios Holberg (2008) y Modern Language Association (2011) en reconocimiento a su trayectoria profesional.

  2. Ramón del CastilloRamón del Castillo

    (Madrid, 1964) Profesor titular de Filosofía de la Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED), donde enseña corrientes actuales de la filosofía y estudios culturales. Forma parte del equipo coordinador del programa de doctorado en Filosofía de la UNED y ha sido director de varios proyectos de investigación dedicados a la filosofía contemporánea en colaboración con centros internacionales. También dirige desde 2014 el grupo de estudios culturales de la UNED. Ha impartido clases y conferencias en universidades de Estados Unidos, México, Argentina, Colombia, Australia, Japón, Alemania, Italia, Dinamarca, Irlanda y Gran Bretaña.

    Entre sus escritos se encuentran “Varieties of American Ecstasy”, “The Glass Prison”, “Estetas y profetas”, “Espectros del idealismo”, “Los reinos de la ironía”, “Una serena desesperación”, “Portrait of an Anxiety”, “El amigo americano”, “Érase una vez en América”, “The Comic Mind of William James” y Conocimiento y acción. El giro pragmático de la filosofía (1995).

    Se ha ocupado de la historia del marxismo en Gran Bretaña y Estados Unidos, y ha editado y prologado a pensadores como Terry Eagleton (La idea de cultura, La ideología de la estética) y Fredric Jameson (Teoría de la postmodernidad). Sobre temas de política, arte y religión ha publicado “In Spite of Theory”, “Cultural Supplements”, “Las ilusiones de la estética” y recientemente “Dar fe de la política”, y “Un filósofo con mano izquierda” (prólogo a Tragedia y modernidad de Simon Critchley, de cuyo autor prepara también la edición española de The Faith of The Faithless).

    Próximamente publicará los libros Unlimited America, colección de ensayos sobre comedia muda, dibujos animados, Theodor Adorno y Siegfried Kracauer en Estados Unidos y la literatura de ciencia ficción, y Wittgenstein y su relación con el chiste, donde retrata el absurdo sentido del humor de Wittgenstein, su ausencia de espíritu trágico y la relación entre normas y bromas. Asimismo, prepara trabajos sobre espacios de evasión, como jardines y parques temáticos.

    En la primavera de 2014 fue nombrado miembro del Parlamento Europeo de la Cultura.

Frederic Jameson (Cleveland, Ohio, 1934) is one of the most influential US intellectuals of the last 30 years. He studied with Erich Auerbach and obtained his PhD in the University of Yale in 1959 with a work on Jean-Paul Sartre. He has been professor in the universities if Harvard, Yale and California, and currently holds the Chair of Comparative Literature and Romance Studies in the University of Duke (North Carolina), where he has been teaching since 1985. In 2008 he received the Holberg Prize in recognition for his career, and in 2012 the 6th prize granted by the Modern Language Association for his Lifetime Scholarly Achievement.

Before gaining world fame for his original vision on the new cultural production modes, which he developed along the 1980s and finally produced his most famous book Postmodernism or the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism (1991), Jameson had already published unique works that carried literary criticism beyond marxism and structuralism: Marxism and Form (1971), The Prison-House of Language: A Critical Account of Structuralism and Russian Formalism (1972), and The Political Unconscious: Narrative as a Socially Symbolic Act (1981). In parallel he wrote extraordinary monographs of distinguished philosophic and artistic figures like Fables of Aggression: Wyndham Lewis, The Modernist as Fascist (1979), Late Marxism: Adorno or the Persistence of the Dialectic (1990) and Brecht and Method (1998), as well as numerous essays over the construction of historicity and the political dimensions of Reason, all of which was compiled in The Ideologies of Theory (1988).

In addition to modifying the views of literary theory, Jameson also gave a major twist to cultural studies and transformed the way the audiovisual media are understood, especially cinema, in books likeSignatures of the Visible (1990) and The Geopolitical Aesthetics: Cinema and Space in the World System (1995). For many years, he has continued addressing the problem of history and the differences between modernism and postmodernism in works like The Seeds of Time (1994), The Cultural Turn (1998) and A Singular Modernity: Essay on the Ontology of the Present (2002). More recently, he has reviewed the relationship between culture and historization in Reflexiones sobre la postmodernidad (2010), and in El postmodernismo revisado (2012).

Hegel and Marx have also had a big influence over his way of thinking. This is obvious in his recent and extraordinary works Valences of Dialectic (2009), The Hegel Variations: On the Phenomenology of Spirit (2010) and Representing Capital: A Reading of Volume One (2011), where he attempts to address the problem of organization in the world of unemployment. Furthermore, his insatiable curiosity has lead him to explore the utopian imagination and literature for masses in his monumental work Archaeologies of the Future: The Desire Called Utopia and Other Science Fictions (2005), while at the same time he has continued tracking the vestiges of modernism and realism in El realismo y la novela providencial (2006), The Modernist Papers (2007) and The Antinomies of Realism (2013). With this last work, which focuses on novels of 19th century and includes chapters devoted to Émile Zola, Leo Tolstoy and Benito Pérez Galdós, he has just received on June 2014 the Truman Capote Award for Literary Criticism.

Jameson's vitality and writing capacity apparently has no limits. His current work includes utopian imagination and the validity of allegories, thoughts about literature and globalization, and extremely original essays dealing with Wagner, Mahler, the opera adaptations and the relation between image an sound.

His books have been translated all around the world, including China, where he has a strong influence. This is a list of his titles currently available in Spanish:


La cárcel del lenguaje: perspectiva crítica del estructuralismo y del formalismo ruso (Barcelona, 1980)

Documentos de cultura, documentos de barbarie (Madrid, 1981, translation of The Political Unconscious)

El posmodernismo o la lógica cultural del capitalismo avanzado (Barcelona, 1991)

La estética geopolítica: cine y espacio en el sistema mundial (Barcelona, 1995)

Teoría de la postmodernidad (Madrid, 1996, short edition of Postmodernism, or the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism)

La estética geopolítica (Barcelona, 1996)

Las semillas del tiempo (Madrid, 2000)

El giro cultural. Escritos seleccionados sobre el postmodernismo 1983-1998 (Buenos Aires, 2002)

Una modernidad singular: ensayo sobre ontología del presente (Barcelona, 2004)

El realismo y la novela providencial (Madrid, 2006, conferece given in the Círculo de Bellas Artes in Madrid [originally in Spanish])

Arqueologías del futuro. El deseo llamado utopía y otras aproximaciones de ciencia ficción (Madrid, 2009)

Marxismo tardío. Adorno y la persistencia de la dialéctica (2010)

Reflexiones sobre la postmodernidad (Madrid, 2010 [originally in Spanish])

El postmodernismo revisado (Madrid, 2012, conferece given in the Círculo de Bellas Artes in Madrid [originally in Spanish])

Signaturas de lo visible (Buenos Aires, 2013)

Representar El capital: una lectura del tomo I(Buenos Aires, 2013 [also: Representing Capital. El desempleo: una lectura de El Capital, Madrid, 2011])

Brecht y el método (Buenos Aires, 2013)

Valencias de la dialéctica (Buenos Aires, 2013)