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Space, Time, and Modernity

Roger Friedland (Author), Deirdre Boden (Author)

Available worldwide

Paperback, 452 pages
ISBN: 9780520080188
January 1995
$36.95, £27.95
The fall of the Berlin wall, the uprising at Tiananmen Square, the war in the Persian Gulf, the conflict in Bosnia—such events have been fundamentally affected by modern technology. As we become instant spectators of war, famine, and revolution, time and space assume new global meanings. This provocative volume presents an eclectic group of contributors who attempt to make sense of the "now" and the "here" that define the modern age.

The essays, by anthropologists, religionists, geographers, linguists, sociologists, and historians, explore the temporal and spatial facets of social life. Their range is remarkable and includes English landscape painting, talk in corporations, agoraphobic women, the ecological structure of Los Angeles, the cosmology of the Holocaust, and the ritual spaces of Buddhist Japan and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. The editors' introduction addresses the diversity of these empirical concerns and positions them within a rapidly expanding theoretical landscape.

David Hockney's striking painting on the book jacket captures the tension between somewhere and everywhere, between space and place, now and just a moment ago—hence "nowhere" or "now/here."
Ann Bermingham
Richard Biernacki
Deirdre Boden
Roger Friedland
Saul Friedlander
Carol Brooks Gardner
Anthony Giddens
Allan G. Grapard
Richard D. Hecht
Stephen Kern
Harvey L. Molotch
Donald Palmer
Paul Rabinow
A. F. Robertson
Adam Seligman
Edward W. Soja
Roger Friedland is Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. His most recent book is To Rule Jerusalem: The Profane Politics of a Sacred Place, with Richard Hecht (1993). Deirdre Boden is Lecturer in Sociology at Lancaster University in England and the author of Talk and Social Structure (California, 1991).
"NowHere is a fascinating collection of essays, led off by an introduction of shrewd, comprehensive readings of space-time problems in the thought of the leading theorists of modernity and late (post) modernity."—George E. Marcus, Rice University

"NowHere represents one of the liveliest and most original attempts to rethink modernity on the contemporary scene. The focus on real time and real place generates a sense of intensity and urgency that is rare in social science writing."—Sherry B. Ortner, University of Michigan

"Look what Friedland, Boden, and their fellow authors have put into this space: it's about time! . . . They establish the inadequacy of the vacant temporal and spatial geometries most social science adopts unthinkingly, point the way to reflection on time and space as rich, dynamic, interacting media, and have a lot of fun along the way."—Charles Tilly, New School for Social Research

"Modernity is indeed the spatio-temporality of the 'now here.' It is the empty time and space of the disciplines and technology as well as the lived time-space of being in the world. This book is a panoramic and sustained investigation of the 'chronoscape' of la condition moderne—from the negative space of the painter's tableau, to the proximate immediacy of face-to-face communication, to the eschatological time of Judaic myth. All of this is itself located in the concrete rhythm and place of the contemporary city, the workday, the family, the mass media. This book is essential in order to grasp the spatio-temporal recasting of thought in the social and cultural sciences."—Scott Lash, Lancaster University

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