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Book review: Martha Rosler: The Bowery in Two Inadequate Descriptive Systems, written by Steve Edwards

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Steve Edwards’s book, Martha Rosler: The Bowery in Two Inadequate Descriptive Systems, is a close study of Rosler’s 1976 artwork. The book takes up the social and political coordinates of the work’s production, focusing on the San Diego Group of which Rosler was a member, New York City during the fiscal crisis, and the broader contribution Rosler makes to what Edwards calls ‘second-wave political modernism’. This review considers Edwards’s analyses of the work, and locates its importance within the discussion around Rosler, as well as the broader history of radical American art.

Affiliations: 1: University College


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1. Brecht Bertolt Willet John Willet"‘The Popular and the Realistic’" 1964 [1938] 1964
2. Denning Michael The Cultural Front: The Laboring of American Culture in the Twentieth Century 2011 London Verso
3. Jameson Fredric Valences of the Dialectic 2009 London Verso
4. Krauss Rosalind E. The Originality of the Avant-Garde and Other Modernist Myths 1985 Cambridge, MA The MIT Press.
5. Marx Karl Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of 1844 1988 [1844] New York Prometheus Books
6. Sekula Allan"‘Dismantling Modernism, Reinventing Documentary (Notes on the Politics of Representation)’" The Massachusetts Review 1978Vol 19 4 859 83
7. Willet John Brecht on Theatre: The Development of an Aesthetic 1964 London Methuen

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