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Athens, The Academy

NEW DATE FOR ‘THE HUMANITIES AND THE IDEA OF THE UNIVERSITY’ – MIDDLESEX UNIVERSITY

NEW DATE for ‘The Humanities and the Idea of the University’, Philosophy Department, Middlesex University

The Middlesex workshop on the Humanities will now take place on TUESDAY 7 DECEMBER 2010, 11am-6pm, Saloon (M004), Ground Floor, Mansion Building, Middlesex University, Trent Park campus, Bramley Road, London N14 4YZ.

Schedule:

11am
Christian Kerslake
Introduction: Philosophy, the Humanities and the University

11.30
Andrew McGettigan
How will Willett’s ‘New Providers’ affect the Arts and Humanities? Independents, For-Profits and External Degrees in the Proposals for Higher Education

12.00
Dave Hill
Education and Resistance in/under Capitalism

12.30
Discussion

1.00
Break for Lunch

2.00
Johann Hoiby, Alfie Meadows, Maria-Louise Rosbech
Student Reflections

2.45
Andrew Goffey
Stupidity and the University

3.15
Matthew Charles
Philanthropy and the Image of the University

3.45
Discussion & Coffee

4.30
Mark Kelly
Resisting the Bureaucratisation of the University

5.00 
Marina Vishmidt
The Humanities and the Location of Value in the University

5.30
Discussion

* * * 
THE HUMANITIES AND THE IDEA OF THE UNIVERSITY

What are the Humanities, and what are they for? What is a university, and what is it for? Is it possible to stipulate that Humanities education is an essential component of what a university does, or should be doing? How can the links be reinforced between Humanities education and principles of universality and equality?

In her recent book Not for Profit: Why Democracy needs the Humanities (Princeton, 2010), Martha Nussbaum argues that “thirsty for national profit, nations, and their systems of education, are heedlessly discarding skills that are needed to keep democracies alive. If this trend continues, nations all over the world will soon be producing generations of useful machines, rather than complete citizens who can think for themselves”. She presents a case that Humanities education is essential to the cultivation of critical thinking, reflection and empathy with others. 

How, then, to effectively defend Humanities education? At this current juncture, is it possible to effectively defend the Humanities and higher education without also calling for an overall reform of the economy? 

In the past five years Middlesex University has abandoned teaching and research in two key Humanities subjects, History (closed in 2006) and Philosophy (admissions stopped in 2010). It appears to be on course to reduce all of its Humanities provision. This workshop will be a forum for lecturers and students to discuss the future of the Humanities at Middlesex and in the UK in general.

The workshop is co-organised by Andrew Goffey (a.goffey@mdx.ac.uk) and Christian Kerslake (c.kerslake@mdx.ac.uk).

Attendance is free, but please register at mdxhumanities@yahoo.co.uk.

Tube: Piccadilly line to Oakwood station, free bus to campus.

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Evil Media

Evil Media

STUDIES IN EVIL MEDIA

 

University of East London School of Humanities and Social Sciences and Centre for Cultural Studies Research present:

Studies in Evil Media

October 7th 2009, 14:00-17:00, University of East London, Docklands Campus (Cyprus DLR – the station is literally at the campus), Room EB.3.19 (third floor, main building, turn left on entering the main square from station)

All Welcome

Matthew Fuller (Goldsmiths: Author of Media Ecologies) & Andrew Goffey (Middlesex University: Translator of Isabelle Stengers’ Capitalist Sorcery)

Evil Media

Evil Media updates Machiavelli’s ‘The Prince’ for the era of networked digital media and corporate governance. Addressing a range of objects, practices, techniques and knowledges traditionally excluded from the purview of media studies, it explores the sophistry that is quite literally embodied by the sophisticated technologies of the knowledge economy. ‘Evil’ explicitly references the antagonistic ethical and moral quality that an epoch gorging itself on progress has sought unsuccessfully to banish; and so Evil Media offers a useful prospectus of the ruses, subterfuges, deception, manipulation and trickery which media technics make possible and effective.  By adopting a perspective which counters the idealistic, liberal, assumptions encoded within the notion of representation or facilitation and enabling, it aims to re-situate the study of media within a framework which includes forms of media that are ‘below the radar’ of most contemporary theory and actively occluded by the framework of representation.  Here, media do not so much tell us about things, but are themselves things that exhibit behaviours.

Tony Sampson (University of East London: Author of Virality:Contagion Theory in the Age of Networks) – New Media Hypnosis

Drawing on the microsociology of Gabriel Tarde (1843-1904), and a number of other “Tardean scholars”, this presentation approaches the idea that new media landscapes function increasingly as a mode of hypnotic mass persuasion. Significantly, this is not a sociological perspective that concerns itself with rational, self-contained individuals, or indeed society as a whole, but rather responds to what one viral marketer (following a decidedly similar trajectory to Tarde) recently referred to as ‘the invisible currents that run between and among consumers’. These ‘invisible currents’, affective contagions (Thrift, 2007), or the radiation of imitation-suggestibility, as Tarde termed it, work at the intersections between attention inattention, cognition/noncognition, social/biological domains and consciousness/unconsciousness. The talk focuses on examples taken from the new science of networks,epidemiology, HCI, emotional design, affective computing, eye tracking technology, neuromarketing and evil media studies.

Respondent: Paul Gormley
(University of East London: Author of The New Brutality Film: Race and Affect in Contemporary American Cinema).

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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