Mary Louise PrattApr 27, 2022
Dissident Acts 2022
In Planetary Longings (Duke UP, 2022), eminent cultural theorist Mary Louise Pratt posits that the last decade of the twentieth century and the first decades of the twenty-first mark a turning point in the human and planetary condition. Examining the forces of modernity, neoliberalism, coloniality, and indigeneity in their pre- and postmillennial forms, Pratt reflects on the crisis of futurity that accompanies the millennial turn in relation to environmental disaster and to the new forms of thinking it has catalyzed. She turns to 1990s Latin American vernacular culture, literary fiction, and social movements, which simultaneously registered neoliberalism’s devastating effects and pursued alternate ways of knowing and living. Tracing the workings of colonialism alongside the history of anticolonial struggles and Indigenous mobilizations in the Americas, Pratt analyzes indigeneity both as a key index of coloniality, neoliberal extraction, and ecological destruction, and as a source for alternative modes of thought and being. Ultimately, Pratt demonstrates that the changes on either side of the millennium have catalyzed new forms of world-making and knowledge-making in the face of an unknowable and catastrophic future.
Louisa Hann recently attained a PhD in English and American studies from the University of Manchester, specialising in the political economy of HIV/AIDS theatres. She has published work on the memorialisation of HIV/AIDS on the contemporary stage and the use of documentary theatre as a neoliberal harm reduction tool. She is currently working on a monograph based on her doctoral thesis. You can get in touch with her at email@example.com.