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The Weather in Proust (Series Q) Paperback – December 20, 2011

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Review
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“The Weather in Proust is not just a random final collection of Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s essays. It is a frank and
flowing analysis of the conflict of pleasure and destruction that shapes our attachment to life; it is an account of the
deities that artists invent to embody these dramatic life forces; and, perhaps above all, it is what she calls a
‘fantasy book,’ a stimulus to follow out affect beyond the conventions of thought. Like the artists and psychoanalysts
whom Sedgwick seeks out, this work provides a ‘calm voice, so contagious and easy to internalize’ that ‘a new mental
faculty’ emerges: through crystalline prose, clear-sighted formulations, and an unsurpassed aesthetic patience,
Sedgwick’s engagement with sexuality, politics, and reading closely constitute a sublime teaching.”—Lauren Berlant,
author of Cruel Optimism

“With breathtaking range and brilliance, Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick once again, and in myriad ways, reminds us of the complex
relationality of affective life. These extraordinary essays give life to her claim that something about queer is
inextinguishable.”—Judith Butler, Maxine Elliot Professor, University of California, Berkeley

“For a writer whose prose (and thought) could often be astoundingly dense, circuitous, and lovingly (if sometimes
frustratingly) devoted to articulating the farthest reaches of complexity, the overall effect of The Weather in Proust
is one of great clarification and distillation. Indeed, for those unfamiliar with Sedgwick’s work, I would recommend
starting with The Weather in Proust and moving backward from there, as the volume offers an enjoyably compressed,
coherent, and retrospective portrait of Sedgwick’s principal preoccupations.” (Maggie Nelson Los Angeles Review of
Books)

“Like all of [Sedgwick’s] writing, The Weather in Proust both contributes to theory and challenges what we actually mean
when we theorize, or read and write theory. . . . The Weather in Proust ravishes in the flexibility of its theoretical
energies, in essays on topics as surfacially different as Proustian weather, the Greek poet C.P. Cavafy, Japanese
textile practice, anality, and autism. . . . The delight of discovering Sedgwick’s own findings arises in part because
the voice in these essays feels so lucidly sincere. Her writing feels true, a word which aptly comes from an Old English
word meaning “loyal;” her writing feels loyal, both to itself and its readers.” (Michael D. Snediker Theory and Event)

“The Weather in Proust embodies Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s seemingly simple yet revolutionary claim that ‘people are
different.’ It is grounded in her commitment to a critical taxonomy that refuses binarisms, that works in the space
between two and infinity, whether it be of sexualities or affects, ‘kinds of people,’ or even ‘little gods,’ a practice
she brilliantly argues that Marcel Proust’s writing, even its discussion of the weather, and C. P. Cavafy’s invocation
of the periperformative, epitomize.” (Kathryn R. Kent GLQ)

“This posthumous collection of Sedgwick’s essays presents readers with a glittering kaleidoscope of ‘capacious
concerns.’ Sedgwick, a pioneer in queer studies, shines as she contemplates Proust, textile art, and mortality in
language that is challenging and exhilarating. . . . Engaging with Sedgwick will fill readers will wonder.” (Publishers
Weekly)

“This selection of Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s unpublished papers and talks voers a wide range, from lively fragments of a
projected book on Proust, to Cafavy, psychoanalysis, and Buddhism. The illuminate Segwick’s attempt to establish an
epistemology of the individual subject. . . . Sedgwick’s wit is tonic. . . .” (Allen Thiher Times Literary Supplement)

“I was deeply moved by the book. It has much to offer to Proust scholars, scholars of queer studies, scholars (and
skeptics) of psychoanalysis, and anyone concerned with how intellectual work might be made meaningfully continuous with
the creative, political, and pedagogical practices of everyday life. Upon finishing the volume, I felt grief at the loss
of this exceptionally gifted theorist, mixed with gratitude for the stunning body of work that Eve Sedgwick has left
us—including The Weather in Proust.”
(Hannah Freed-Thall MLN)

“If Sedgwick found in emptiness a certain energy, a kind of ‘arising,’ then those of us who remain in the empty space
she has left behind might be encouraged to take up The Weather in Proust when her absence touches us most acutely, to
breathe in its atmosphere and bask in the warm climate of its thought.” (Gregory Tomso American Literature)

“It is an adventure and a privilege to read The Weather in Proust, but these readerly experiences are alloyed with a
strong sense of sadness that this carefully edited and beautifully produced volume should be posthumous. . . . We might
think of these collected pieces as the characteristically vibrant and multifarious ways in which Sedgwick came to the
‘realisation’ of her mortality.” (Adam Watt Journal of Gender Studies)

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About the Author
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Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick (1950–2009) was Distinguished Professor of English at the CUNY Graduate Center. She is the author
of Epistemology of the Closet, Between Men, and A Dialogue on Love. Her books Touching Feeling; Tendencies; Fat Art,
Thin Art; Novel Gazing; Gary in Your Pocket; and Shame and Its Sisters (co-edited with Adam Frank), are all also
published by Duke University Press.

Jonathan Goldberg is Arts and Sciences Distinguished Professor of English and Director of the Studies in Sexualities
Program at Emory University. He is the author, most recently, of The Seeds of Things.

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