This discussion addresses two parts of Pamela M. Lee’s forthcoming study of Think Tank Aesthetics: Mid-Century Modernism, The Cold War and the Rise of Visual Culture: the 2011 October essay “Aesthetic Strategist: Albert Wohlstetter, the Cold War, and a Theory of Mid-Century Modernism,” and a recent talk, “1973: or, the Arché of Neoliberalism.”1 Two core issues are at stake throughout Lee’s study, the crisis of the humanities and its connections with neoliberal policy.2 In “Aesthetic Strategist” Lee focuses on the surprising relationship between military strategist and systems theorist Wohlstetter and art historian Meyer Schapiro, who shared a defining commitment to semiotics; in “1973” Lee looks at the Ulm designer Gui Bonsiepe, the management systems expert Stafford Beer, and the Austrian economist Friedrich Hayek to consider the way their work occupies and evacuates history.
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Cronan, Todd and Palermo, Charles J., More Neoliberal Art History (2018). nonsite.org.