Current theories of knowledge, art, and power are locked into sterile debates around the question of representation. This book examines the limits of antirepresentationalism in these fields and argues that the anarchist tradition can point the way beyond our contemporary "crisis of representation." The author rereads the theory and practical experiences of anarchism from the nineteenth century to the present, proposing a radical revision of received notions of the subject - from the equation of anarchy with literary "decadence" to the interpretation of anarchism as yet another discourse founded on a notion of the "human essence." What emerges, instead, is a complex portrait of anarchism as a body of thought that provides the framework for a kind of critical realism, with implications for fields ranging from aesthetics to economics, from philosophy to politics. Jesse Cohn teaches English at Purdue University North Central.