Alberto Toscano has just published an article entitled ‘The World is Already Without Us’ in a special issue of Social Text around the work of Fredric Jameson. The article revisits the problematic of the cognitive mapping of capital by probing the affinity between two representational predicaments: the depopulated nature of images of human-altered landscapes in the “new topographics” photography and its epigones, and the current debate over the definition of the Anthropocene. It looks in Fredric Jameson’s treatment of the time of capital, and of the place therein of dead labor, for a clue to critically rethink both these phenomena, revealing their profound affinity in the aporia besetting our thinking of historical agency under capitalist conditions. The article concludes with a brief reflection on what it might mean to define communism in this light as the “resurrection of dead labor.”

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