This book proposes the necessity of a new critical attitude appropriate to a post-enlightenment social and political condition. Theory - the intellectual and his or her knowledge - has been institutionalised and tamed; the critic interested in praxis must find a new means of establishing an effective intellection. After Theory argues the demand for a post-theoretical or ana-theoretical attitude which will recondition and regenerate critique under the aegis of a philosophical and austere postmarxism. The 'waking' of theory advanced here ranges eclectically over twentieth-century practice in philosophy, literature, painting, music, dance, architecture, film and photography, breaking theory from its institutionalised bonds.
Thomas Docherty is professor of English at the University of Kent, Canterbury.
Part 1 Getting going: postmodernism. Part 2 Excess and extravagance: theory, enlightenment, violence; photography as modern cartography. Part 3 Clews and webs: representing postmodernism; postmodern (dis)simulation. Part 4 Aural labyrinth: listening; deterritorialization; "list, list, O list...". Part 5 Conclusion going on: post-Marxism.