STARKVILLE, Miss.--A Mississippi State professor's new book on political genealogy offers useful insights for geographers, historians, sociologists, and political scientists, as well as philosophers.
"Empowerment: The Theory and Practice of Political Genealogy," by Michael R. Clifford of the university's philosophy and religion department, explores the philosophy of political genealogy.
Released in November 2013 by Lexington Books, a subsidiary of Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, the 147-page book surveys political genealogy comprehensively in an effort to formalize it as a mode of theoretical inquiry.
"This book is a history of the present," Clifford said. "We live in a post-representational world where the government does not represent our interests. What I try to show in this book is, once we recognize this, we begin to understand why things are the way they are.
"If we're interested in justice and freedom, then we have to recognize the ways that we are subjected to the ways identities are being changed and formulated by technology, the ways corporations sell us things by creating this myth of autonomous individualism," he continued. "So, the notion of empowerment requires a different interpretation of freedom."
The Vanderbilt University doctoral graduate explored political genealogy from a philosopher's perspective, and his latest book impacts other academic disciplines -- especially geography. He said geographers, along with policy makers and cultural theorists, are researching political genealogy, too.
To complete his research, for "Empowerment," Clifford became a visiting scholar in the geography department at University of California-Berkeley.
By expanding his research initiatives and allowing a variety of disciplinary thinking to contribute to the first single-author study of political genealogy, Clifford said he hopes to foster conversation among academic disciplines and researchers.
For more information, contact Clifford at 662-325-2382 or firstname.lastname@example.org.