Anarchism, Representation, and Culture
Year Published: 2002 First Published:
Resource Type: Article
Cx Number: CX6985
A discussion of the role of anarchism in the formation of modernist avant-garde aesthetics.
Abstract: Over the last decade and a half, cultural historians like Patricia Leighten, David Weir, David Kadlec, and Allan Antliff have rediscovered the role of anarchism in the formation of modernist avant-garde aesthetics. Their new historical narrative posits a "resistance to representation" and an embrace of "stylistic fragmentation" as thematic links between modernism and anarchism: modernist moves toward abstraction and anti-art can be seen as informed by the individualism of Max Stirner, founded on the uniqueness of the ego, that irreducible fragment which belongs to no group and therefore cannot be represented.