April 20, 2016

Wampole Reading From “Rootedness”


Assistant Professor of French at Princeton University Christy Wampole will be reading from her new book Rootedness: The Ramifications of a Metaphor (Univ. of Chicago Press) at Labyrinth Books on Tuesday, April 26 at 6 p.m. She will be joined in a discussion of the book by her Princeton colleague, critic and theorist Eduardo Cadava.

In Rootedness, Ms. Wampole looks toward philosophy, ecology, literature, history, and politics to demonstrate how the metaphor of the root — surfacing often in an unexpected variety of places, from the family tree to folk etymology to the language of exile — developed in 20th-century Europe. She examines both the philosophical implications of this metaphor and its political evolution. With a focus on this concept’s history in France and Germany, the book traces its influence in diverse areas such as the search for the mystical origins of words, land worship, and nationalist rhetoric while exploring the works of Martin Heidegger, Simone Weil, Jean-Paul Sartre, Paul Celan, and others.

According to Alison James of the University of Chicago, “Rootedness is original, compelling, and ambitious in scope. This is an exemplary work of scholarship in its breadth and depth, not only as an investigation into a number of major works of European literature and thought, but also as an exploration of the human relationship to the other living beings that inhabit the earth.”

Christy Wampole is the author of The Other Serious: Essays for the New American Generation, as well as a regular contributor to the New York Times and other publications. Eduardo Cadava’s books include Words of Light: Theses on the Photography of History, Emerson and the Climates of History, and Fazal Sheikh: Portraits. He is co-editor of The Itinerant Languages of Photography, Who Comes After the Subject?, and Cities Without Citizens.