Part of the International Texts in Critical Media Aesthetics series.
Svetlana Boym writes a new genealogy of modernity, moving beyond older debates between modernism and postmodernism to focus on the intersection of art, architecture, technology, and philosophy in the early twenty-first century. Drawing on theories of Georg Simmel, Henri Bergson, Aby Warburg, and Jacques Derrida, Boym presents the off-modern as an eccentric, self-questioning, anti-authoritarian perspective with roots in the Russian avant-garde, now developed in surprising ways by contemporary artists, architects, and curators around the world. She illustrates the off-modern in discussions of (and with) figures as diverse as architect Rem Koolhaas, Albanian artist-turned-mayor Edi Rama, an art collective in Delhi, and the creator of the Museum of Jurassic Technology in Los Angeles. Both a manifesto and a memoir, The Off-Modern often returns to themes of travel and immigration, exploring issues of diasporic intimacy and productive estrangement amid nostalgic landscapes of urban ruins.[publisher's note]