This was a big year for wrapping up projects. Early on, Creepiness came out — and though I hadn’t done any actual work on it this year, it marked the conclusion of the pop culture project I’d been doing “on the side” (despite the fact that they were my most visible publications) since shortly after I finished my dissertation. I also completed (down to correcting proofs) a translation project that had occuppied me for around two years, Agamben’s The Use of Bodies, which is kind of the culmination of all the Agamben translating I’ve been doing over that same period.
Finally and most importantly, I completed the project that has “officially” been my next big thing since I defended: The Prince of This World, for which I have signed the contract and submitted my final text. In the course of developing my intuition that the devil theme from Politics of Redemption deserved its own study, I have taught three courses at three institutions, given multiple conference papers and invited lectures, written innumerable blog posts, and been in continual dialogue with many colleagues. I have been thinking about this project probably longer than I’ve ever thought about any one thing in my life. And now it’s found its final form and a good home.
Long-time readers will know that I’m too much of a workaholic to have completely cleared my decks. Over the course of the fall semester, as I was waiting for the gears of peer review to grind over my manuscript, Carlo Salzani and I gathered contributors for an edited volume tentatively entitled Agamben as Reader: A Guide to the Sources. We conceive it as a reference book with articles centered on Agamben’s relationship to his interlocutors, and we just submitted the proposal to a publisher this weekend. An edited volume is the one major form of academic publication I haven’t done yet, and I think this idea is a genuinely useful one — so there we go. Going over the chapters should keep me busy next fall. Good to have something pencilled in.
In the meantime, I will undoubtedly start work on the Trinity follow-up project I’ve been mentioning since mid-summer, which may take the form of a book on Athanasius. But for at least the next few weeks, I’m going to try to relax, read a couple books I’ve always meant to but never had time for, etc. Yesterday I managed to achieve literally nothing on net, so that was a helpful start. Plus I just subscribed to HBO Now.
In any case, if you ever wondered what it was like to have several projects that you’ve been working on for close to seven years all coming to a conclusion at around the same time — it’s weird. Good, but still weird.