Cover of Judith Hamera's book Unfinished Business: Michael Jackson, Detroit, and the Figural Economy of American Deindustrialization. Cover contains title and author in pale yellow text against a black background. Photo above is Tyree Guyton's art installation the Heidelberg Project and the photo below is Michael Jackson wearing his signature white globe and sunglasses waving at the camera with Nancy and Ronald Reagan as well as two other people in suite accompanying him.

Unfinished Business: Michael Jackson, Detroit, and the Figural Economy of American Deindustrialization

Author: Judith Hamera

Oxford University Press, 2017

Service: Indexing

How does structural economic change look and feel? How are such changes normalized? Who represents hope? Who are the cautionary tales?

Unfinished Business argues that US deindustrialization cannot be understood apart from issues of race, and specifically apart from images of, and works by and about African Americans that represent or resist normative or aberrant relationships to work and capital in transitional times.

It insists that Michael Jackson's performances and coverage of his life, plays featuring Detroit, plans for the city's postindustrial revitalization, and Detroit installations The Heidelberg Project and Mobile Homestead have something valuable to teach us about three decades of structural economic transition in the US, particularly about the changing nature of work and capitalism between the mid-1980s and 2016.

Jackson and Detroit offer examples of the racialization of deindustrialization, how it operates as a structure of feeling and as representations as well as a shift in the dominant mode of production, and how industrialization's successor mode, financialization, uses imagery both very similar to and very different from its predecessor.

*Book description from publisher

Cover of Judith Hamera's book Unfinished Business: Michael Jackson, Detroit, and the Figural Economy of American Deindustrialization. Cover contains title and author in pale yellow text against a black background. Photo above is Tyree Guyton's art installation the Heidelberg Project and the photo below is Michael Jackson wearing his signature white globe and sunglasses waving at the camera with Nancy and Ronald Reagan as well as two other people in suite accompanying him.