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Tag Archives: Realism

Speculative Realism

Speculative Realism

REALISM BITES

Eighth Biannual Graduate Student Conference of the German Program

Department of German and Romance Languages and Literature at the Johns Hopkins University

Realism Bites: Disruptive Realisms in Modernity

Keynote speakers:

Prof. Elisabeth Strowick, Johns Hopkins University

Prof. Timothy Brennan, University of Minnesota

November 6- 7, 2015
The Johns Hopkins University

 

All the fissures and rents which are inherent in the historical situation must be drawn into the form-giving process and cannot nor should be disguised by compositional means.

(György Lukács, The Theory of the Novel)

 

The term realism has been associated with multiple artistic practices, styles and movements from nineteenth-century bourgeois realism to socialist realism, surrealism, Italian neorealism, magical realism, and postmodern hyperrealism. Its repetitions and invocations express a commitment to and a struggle for reality, rearticulating the political, social and epistemological functions and meanings of art. As a form of “Darstellung der Wirklichkeit,” it carries the tension of a set of oppositions: the reality that is and the reality that ought to be; an objective and verisimilar reproduction and a poetic constitution of reality; a conventional mode and personal expression of reality.

György Lukács emphasized the necessity for a “critical realism,” one that is determined by a critical perception and mediation of social contradictions, rather than their naïve reproduction. The notion of unity, so important for the Lukácsian concept of ‘critical realism,’ refers not only to the realist novel’s capacity to reveal the totality of social relations, but also to its depiction of the individual’s striving to reach totality as a mode of being. Even though, Lukács considered the novel as the primary form for the critical depiction of the modern conditio humana, the question can be raised whether “critical realism” functions more as an epistemo-critical concept than as a rigid genre definition. Since Lukács, many scholars and artists have called into question his notion of totality and human agency, and contested h is definition of art as a representational medium that reveals a social totality. Should we, as Fredric Jameson has suggested, hold on to a concept of totality, when discussing current “problems of realism?” How do the various forms of realism relate to what Lukács – justifiably or not – has identified as the pseudo-objectivity of Naturalism, on the one hand, and extreme subjectivism, on the other? Can one actualize critical realisms for a critique of representation? And in what way do contemporary reassessments and actualizations of realisms repeat or reverse traditional dichotomies, such as those between idealism and realism, nominalism and realism, realism and modernism?

 

This call for paper invites submissions from a wide variety of disciplines that discuss competing aesthetic strategies. Presentations should not exceed 20 minutes.

Please submit abstracts (300-500 words) with your name and affiliation to Esther Edelmann and Christiane Ketteler at realismbitesgermangrads@gmail.com by August 13, 2015.

Topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Realism repeated: Realism after Modernism
  • Avant-garde “realities”
  • Antinomies and instabilities within classical realisms
  • The reception of realisms and its historical conditions
  • Realisms, political movements and alliances
  • Speculative Realism and the constitution and emergence of objects
  • Excessive Realism or new possibilities of perceptions of objects
  • Productive realisms or the emergence of new orders
  • Realisms (false) friends: Reportage, Travelogue, and Documentary
  • The Real and the Reality Principle
  • Capitalist Realism and the limits and problems in representing global capitalism and its alternatives
  • Theories and Projects of Mapping
  • Hyperrealism and the Desert of the Real / The Spectacle of Reality
  • Abject Realisms and the abjected within Realism
  • Realism and the Dissolutions of boundaries between the arts
  • Realism, Nominalism, Idealism, (New) Materialism
  • Realism, Romanticism, Symbolism
  • Post/Colonial Realisms
  • Feminist Realism
  • Realism and the Problem of Exemplarity
  • “Wirklichkeit als das Wirkende”

 

First Published in http://www.historicalmaterialism.org/news/distributed/cfp-german-graduate-conference-realism-bites-nov-6-7-2015-jhu-baltimore

 

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Speculative Realism

Speculative Realism

NEW FORMS OF REALISM IN CONTEMPORARY PHILOSOPHY

INSTITUTE OF SOCIAL SCIENCES AND HUMANITIES – SKOPJE

New Forms of Realism in Contemporary Philosophy

In cooperation with the International Institute of Studies of Humanities and Social Sciences (Athens)

SUMMER SCHOOL

2015

June 26th – July 3rd 2015 in Ohrid, Macedonia

 

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS

The Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities – Skopje in cooperation with the International

Institute of Studies of Humanities and Social Sciences (based in Athens) announces the summer school program “New Forms of Realism in Contemporary Philosophy.” Part 1 will be held in Ohrid (Macedonia) 26 June-3 July, 2015.

The “New Forms of Realism in Contemporary Philosophy” summer school in Ohrid will focus on the recent trends of realism in contemporary philosophy which has been labeled often erroneously under a single and vague category such as “speculative realism” or “new materialism” etc. Unpacking such generalizations and aiming at specific authors who have generated distinct strands of thought that nonetheless constitute what we have vaguely termed “new realisms in philosophy,” we conceptualized the sub-courses:

– “The non-standard philosophy of François Laruelle”; sub-course leader: François Laruelle

– “Non-standard epistemologies”; sub-course leader Anne Françoise Schmid

– “Magic Realism and Socialist Realism: Arts and Persuasion”; sub-course leader Svetlana Slapšak

– “Exploration of possibilities for realist readings in contemporary feminist philosophy in line with non-standard philosophy and the writings of Marx”; sub-course leader: Katarina Kolozova

Working language of the summer school will be English and French (with translation into English).

Professors:

Prof. Dr. François Laruelle, Prof. Dr. Anne Françoise Schmid, Prof. Dr. Katarina Kolozova, Prof. Dr. Ray Brassier (TBC) and Prof. Dr. GDil rA.nSvidejtalrana Slapšak, Prof.

Summer school Director:

Prof. Dr. Katarina Kolozova, Executive Director of the Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities – Skopje

Summer school academic coordinator:

Dr. Jordan Šišovski, Assistant Professor in the Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities – Skopje

Eligibility:

-Participants must be MA students or PhD candidates in any field belonging to the social sciences or humanities

-Participants must submit an abstract for a presentation in one of the summer school’s workshops or for one of the final presentations sessions;

-Participants from other countries are also eligible to participate;

Registration:

Early bird Registration: until February 20th

Participation fee: 140 Euro for 9 day course

Early bird applications from at least three persons from same institution: 100 Euro

Normal Registration: February 21st – March 20th

Participation fee: 170 Euro for 9 day course

Applications from at least three persons from same institution: 130 Euros

Late applications:

Registration: March 21st – April 10th

Participation fee: 210 euro for 9 day course

Late applications from at least three persons from same institution: 170 Euros

Number of participants: 50

Process of Selection

Members of the boards  of the Internaitonal Institute in Athens and of ISSHS will form the organizing committee and selection committee that will review the applications

Interested applicants should send short CV, abstract for presentation and the available application form.

Deadline for submitting an application: April 10th 2015

Deadline for announcing the results of the selection process: April 30th 2015

Accommodation:

It is entirely up to each student to decide accommodation of their own choosing. The organizers will provide information and enable and inform about possibilities for discount accommodation, and will be available to help logistically.

Contact persons:

Dr. Jordan Šišovski, Project Coordinator, e-mail: jordan.shishovski@isshs.edu.mk, info@isshs.edu.mk

Applications should be sent to the Project Coordinator to either of these two addresses.

Prof. Dr. Katarina Kolozova, Executive Director of Institute of Social Sciences and Humanities – Skopje, e-mail: katerina.kolozova@isshs.edu.mk

Address: 20 Oktomvri nr. 8 (second floor), 1000 Skopje, Republic of Macedonia

Tel/Fax: +389 2 3 113 059

http://www.isshs.edu.mk

 

**END**

‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

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Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

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Things Aint Wot They Used T'be

Things Aint Wot They Used T’be

THING THEORY, MATERIAL CULTURE, AND OBJECT-ORIENTED ONTOLOGY

Call For Papers: Issue 27, Transformations

Thing Theory, Material Culture, and Object-Oriented Ontology

Transformations is calling for submissions for Issue 27, which is dedicated to the topic of Things.

The investigation of things is an important subject across many disciplines in the humanities and social sciences. In The Social Life of Things (1988), Arjun Appadurai provided an innovative exploration of how things, as commodities, shaped their human agents, rather than the other way around — an idea that would have important repercussions for a new scholarly interest in material culture. In attempting to illuminate the problematic notion of a “Thing Theory” (2001), Bill Brown has pointed to the complex relationship between objects and things, arguing that things lie outside a simple subject-object framework, leading a multifaceted “life” that humans only glimpse rather than truly see. More recently, in Vibrant Matter (2010), Jane Bennett has investigated the political ecology of things and scholars such as Gay Hawkins (2009) and Gillian Whitlock (2010) have taken up this rich field of enquiry in their explorations of topics as diverse as cultural detritus, the posthuman, the consumption of water and plastic, and the production, dissemination and reception of testimony and artifacts concerned with asylum seekers’ life narratives.

We welcome expressions of interest in submitting articles addressing, but not restricted to, the following research themes:

How can we understand “things” in relation to shifting technological and social contexts, to works of art or literature, or in relation to the cultural biographies or “lives” of things themselves?

Where are the lines that divide the sentient from the non-sentient, the human from the non-human, and what are their consequences?

Transformations invites proposals for academic journal articles on any aspect of the theme of “Things.”

Articles should be between 3,500 and 5,000 words and should conform to the style guide and submission guidelines on the Transformations website.

Please submit an abstract (200 words) as well as a succinct author biography (two sentences) and contact details via email to Associate Professor Jane Stadler at the University of Queensland (j.stadler@uq.edu.au) by 13 March 2015. Complete articles will be due by Monday 15 June 2015.

Stuff

Stuff

 

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‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Au-vyMtfDAs

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia: http://independent.academia.edu/GlennRikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ ResearchGate: http://www.researchgate.net/profile/Glenn_Rikowski?ev=hdr_xprf

Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.co.uk/

Books

Books

THE ANTINOMIES OF REALISM

by FREDRIC JAMESON

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AVAILABLE NOW

http://www.versobooks.com/books/1498-the-antinomies-of-realism

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“This latest installment in his epic ‘poetics of social form’ is vintage Jameson: no other critic has his range of reference in literature and theory, and no one dialecticizes their connections to politics and history with anything like his transformative energy. Not since Auerbach has ‘realism’ been so penetratingly analyzed or so radically rethought. With many surprises along the way—such as the new centrality Jameson affords ‘affect’ in the realist novel—the results are absolutely stunning.” – Hal Foster, PrincetonUniversity

“Probably the most important cultural critic writing in English today . . . it can truly be said that nothing cultural is alien to him.” – Colin MacCabe

“The most muscular of writers.” – Times Literary Supplement

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A groundbreaking analysis of the nineteenth-century novel

THE ANTINOMIES OF REALISM is a history of the nineteenth-century realist novel and its legacy told without a glimmer of nostalgia for artistic achievements that the movement of history makes it impossible to recreate. The works of Zola, Tolstoy, Pérez Galdós, and George Eliot are in the most profound sense inimitable, yet continue to dominate the novel form to this day. Novels to emerge since struggle to reconcile the social conditions of their own creation with the history of this mode of writing: the so-called modernist novel is one attempted solution to this conflict, as is the ever-more impoverished variety of commercial narratives—what today’s book reviewers dub “serious novels,” which are an attempt at the impossible endeavor to roll back the past. 

Fredric Jameson examines the most influential theories of artistic and literary realism, approaching the subject himself in terms of the social and historical preconditions for realism’s emergence. The realist novel combined an attention to the body and its states of feeling with a focus on the quest for individual realization within the confines of history. 

In contemporary writing, other forms of representation—for which the term “postmodern” is too glib—have become visible: for example, in the historical fiction of Hilary Mantel or the stylistic plurality of David Mitchell’s novels. Contemporary fiction is shown to be conducting startling experiments in the representation of new realities of a global social totality, modern technological warfare, and historical developments that, although they saturate every corner of our lives, only become apparent on rare occasions and by way of the strangest formal and artistic devices. 

In a coda, Jameson explains how “realistic” narratives survived the end of classical realism. In effect, he provides an argument for the serious study of popular fiction and mass culture that transcends lazy journalism and the easy platitudes of recent cultural studies.

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FREDRIC JAMESON is Distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature at Duke University. The author of numerous books, he has over the last three decades developed a richly nuanced vision of Western culture’s relation to political economy. He was a recipient of the 2008 Holberg International Memorial Prize. He is the author of many books, including POSTMODERNISM, OR, THE CULTURAL LOGIC OF LATE CAPITALISM, THE CULTURAL TURN, A SINGULAR MODERNITY, THE MODERNIST PAPERS, ARCHAEOLOGIES OF THE FUTURE, BRECHT AND METHOD, IDEOLOGIES OF THEORY, VALENCES OF THE DIALECTIC, THE HEGEL VARIATIONS and REPRESENTING CAPITAL.

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Hardback / ISBN: 9781781681336 / $34.95 / £20.00 / 432 pages

 

Also Available as an Ebook

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For more information on THE ANTINOMIES OF REALISM

or to buy the book visit: http://www.versobooks.com/books/1498-the-antinomies-of-realism

———————————–

Visit Verso’s website for information on our upcoming events, new reviews and publications and special offers: http://www.versobooks.com

 

Sign up for the Verso mailing list:

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Become a fan of Verso on Facebook

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And get updates on Twitter too!

http://twitter.com/VersoBooks

 

**END**

 

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkP_Mi5ideo  

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

 

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Aesthetics

Aesthetics

ART IN THE AGE OF REAL ABSTRACTION

Call for Papers | ‘Art in the Age of Real Abstraction’ | Deadline: 12 December 2013

Historic iterations of abstraction in the visual arts have traditionally been associated with terms such as the non-representational, the non-figurative, and the immaterial, in opposition to a loosely defined concept of realism. In the post-war period, however, both realism and abstraction became unstable concepts, deployed to refer to a range of diverse practices, from Nouveau Réalisme to Art Informel to Abstract Expressionism. This conference invites papers that rethink the relation between realism and abstraction in the period between 1970 and the contemporary moment. Of particular concern are the impacts of two intersecting events: the advent of Neoliberalism and the dismantling of Modernism in art history.

‘Art in the Age of Real Abstraction’ seeks to investigate contemporary forms of abstraction through the analysis of different modes of representation, affectivity and performativity, drawing lines of continuity and addressing points of ambiguity between post-war abstraction and contemporary iterations. In recent critical discourse reification has been described as both a process of abstraction and as a figural process. On this view ‘Real Abstraction’ might be understood as the becoming-concrete of the abstract. As such ‘Real Abstraction’ calls for a rethinking of what the terms realism, figuration and abstraction might mean today.

We welcome papers that address the critical stakes of abstraction in the visual arts as a representational economy and as an aesthetic strategy, a way of inhabiting the contradictions produced by capital, and as a means of generating meaning, memory and historical experience.

We encourage academics, researchers and artists to submit papers on the following issues and debates (amongst others):

* post-70s reconfigurations of abstraction

* the artwork and the commodity form

* feminist interventions in the history of abstraction

* abstraction and historic experience

* the intersection of realism and abstraction

* artwork as theory, artwork as historiography

****EXTENDED DEADLINE****

Speakers should be prepared to present papers for 20 min followed by a discussion.

Please send 300 word abstracts by December 12th to:

Rye Dag Holmboe: rye.holmboe.09@ucl. ac.uk

Andrew Witt: andrew.witt.09@ucl.ac.uk

The conference will be held on April 12th, 2014

http://www.ucl.ac.uk/art- history/staff-research/call_ for_papers

**END**

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Books

38th ANNUAL ASSOCIATION OF ART HISTORIANS CONFERENCE AND BOOKFAIR

The Open University, Milton Keynes
29 – 31 March 2012

Association of Art Historians (AAH) Conference: Aesthetics and Politics (Again?)

Session Convenors:

Alexander García Düttmann, Goldsmiths College, ADuttmann@aol.com

James Hellings, Teeside University j_hellings@hotmail.com

34 years ago New Left Books published Aesthetics and Politics, collecting together ‘the key texts of the classic debate within German Marxism’ by Adorno, Benjamin, Bloch, Brecht and Lukács. The collections editors (Rodney Livingstone, Perry Anderson and Francis Mulhern), assembled texts with coherent (if almost entirely antagonistic) inter-relationships – in what they refer to as an incomparable ‘tradition of major aesthetic debate’, held between the 1930s and 1950s in ‘Germany (…); the classical land of aesthetic thought inEurope’. The editors subtitles are fantastically revealing of perceived conflict; ‘Bloch against Lukács / Lukács against Bloch’, ‘Brecht against Lukács’, subtle condemnation; ‘Adorno on Lukács’, ‘Adorno on Brecht’ conviviality; ‘Benjamin with Brecht’, and conciliation; ‘Adorno to Benjamin / Benjamin to Adorno’.

Ideological differences over art (and its histories: Realism, Expressionism, Modernism) were the order of the day. But what’s happened to political aesthetics, Marxist or otherwise, since this golden age? Can we still speak of an ‘aesthetic field’ conditioned by ‘the two recurrent poles of all culture still subject to capital’, being either ‘autistically advanced or collusively popular’.

In recent years, Rancière has done most to ‘widen participation’ by opening up Left aesthetics to encompass the people and places who disrupt this either/ or – but (speaking with Eagleton) ‘how are we to receive and appropriate these polemics today?’ Potential contributors are asked to address the tenor of contemporary inter-relationships of aesthetics and politics by re-interpreting the ideas and authors of this past. The panel-session seeks to stage a dialectic of (dis-)agreement.

 

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Lev Kulidzhanov's 'Karl Marx: The Early Years'

MARX AT THE MOVIES CONFERENCE

Dear All

This is a Call for Papers for a Conference on Marx and cinema that we are hosting at the University of Central Lancashire. We would really appreciate if you post it on various notice boards and forward it to friends and colleagues. Thanks.

Hope to as many of you in Preston next year!

Best wishes, Lars

Call for Papers
Marx at the Movies Conference
University of Central Lancashire
March 16-17, 2012

As the Lehmans Brothers filled for bankruptcy on September 15 2008 an era came to a halt. No more was there a belief that ‘the Market’ would work for the greater good as long as it was left un-regulated. As the belief in neoliberal theory and practice collapsed, many turned to the alternative theory – that of Marxism, not least because for Marx the challenge for human thought was not simply to understand the world but to change it.

Not for the first time Marx is ‘fashionable’. As David Harvey observes in his introduction to The Communist Manifesto: ‘The Communist Manifesto of 1847 is an extraordinary document, full of insights, rich in meanings and bursting with political possibilities. Millions of people all around the world – peasants, workers, soldiers, intellectuals as well as professionals of all sorts – have, over the years, been touched and inspired by it.’

The same can be said about filmmakers, film academics and students, in view of the fact that cinema, as a collective endeavour and as an industrial art, is an excellent ground to test Marxist dialectical thought. But how has cinema engaged with Marxist theory and practice? How has cinema engaged in processes to create radical social transformation, including decolonisation and the liberation of women? Is there a revival of Marxism in contemporary film theory and practice?

These are some of the questions we want to discuss during the two-day conference, hosted by theSchool ofJournalism, Media and Communication inPreston – a town of great importance to the history of the working class, as testified by Marx and Engels’ writings.

 

Papers are sought for topics such as:

* The problems of conveying Marxist thought on screen (including attempts to screen Capital)

* Representation of alienated and non-alienated labour and capital on screen

* The work of Sergei Eisenstein, Bertolt Brecht, Jean-Luc Godard, Chris Marker, Dušan Makavejev, Satyajit Ray, Ousmane Sembène, Alexander Kluge, Ken Loach, Lars von Trier. Are they Marxist filmmakers?

* Western and Eastern Marxist film theory and history Socialist production, distribution and exhibition of films

* Marxism, Third cinema and the cinema of revolt

* Marxism and feminist cinema

* Marxism, realism and non-realism

* Screen images of Marx, Engels and Lenin

Organising committee:
Professor Ewa Mazierska
Dr. Anandi Ramamurthy
Dr. Lars Kristensen

Deadline for abstracts (max 250 words): 1 December 2011.
Please send abstracts to Ewa Mazierska EHMazierska@uclan.ac.uk Or Lars Kristensen LLFKristensen@uclan.ac.uk

Notice: The conference is not expected to produce a surplus value

 

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Ghosts

ON HAUNTOLOGY \ CAPITALIST REALISM – TWO TALKS BY MARK FISHER

THE COLLOQUIUM FOR UNPOPULAR CULTURE AND NYU’S ASIAN/ PACIFIC/ AMERICAN STUDIES PROGRAM present:

TWO TALKS BY MARK FISHER

What are grey vampires and how do they retard the insurrectionary potential of digital  discourse?  How does Derrida’s notion of hauntology contribute to an understanding of dubstep artist Burial?  Is ‘Basic Instinct 2’, routinely derided as a cine-atrocity, a Lacanian reworking of Ballard, Baudrillard and Bataille in service of the creation of a ‘phantasmatic, cybergothic London’?  What is interpassivity and in what ways has it come to define the corporatized incarceration of modern academia?

Over the last decade, Mark Fisher has established a reputation as one of the exhilarating cultural theorists in Britain.  A co-founder of the Cybernetic Culture Research Unit (CCRU) at Warwick University ­and described by Simon Reynolds as the academic equivalent of Apocalypse Now’s Colonel Kurtz ­ he brings together psychoanalysis, political analysis and speculative fiction to create an extraordinary body of rogue scholarship, a theory-rush with few parallels.

Fisher is the author of ‘Capitalist Realism’, the editor of ‘The Resistible Demise of Michael Jackson’ (both Zer0 Books, 2009), and writes regularly for Sight and Sound, Film Quarterly, The Wire and Frieze, as well as maintaining a well-known blog at http://k-punk.abstractdynamics.org.  He teaches at the University of East London, Goldsmiths, University of London, and the City Literary Institute.

The Colloquium for Unpopular Culture and NYU’s Asian/ Pacific/ American Studies program are pleased to be hosting Fisher’s first talks inAmerica.

See ‘ The Metaphysics of Crackle’, at: http://pontone.pl/pontones-special-guest-mix-k-punk-the-metaphysics-of-crackle/

***

MARK FISHER, THESE ARE NON-TIMES AS WELL AS NON-PLACES: REFLECTIONS ON HAUNTOLOGY
 
WHEN: Wednesday 4 May 2011, 6:30pm
WHERE: Room 471, 20 Cooper Square [East 5th and Bowery]
FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

”Through their generic and transient qualities ­ workstations devoid of personal effects, relations with colleagues as fleeting as those with passengers on a commuter journey ­ many workplaces now resemble non-places, either literally, as in the case of a hotel, corporate coffee chain or out-of-town supermarket, or symbolically, in the form of temporary assignments for faceless employers (dis)located in anonymous buildings, where the worker-commuter then follows the same global timetables, navigates the same software applications and experiences the same sense of placelessness, the feeling of being mere data in the mainframe.”

So writes Ivor Southwood in his analysis of precarious labour, ‘Non-Stop Inertia’ (2011). In the last decade, the proliferation of corporate non-places has been accompanied by the spread of cyberspace-time, or Itime, a distributed or unpunctuated temporality. It’s no coincidence that, as this unmarked time increasingly came to dominate cultural and psychic space, Derrida’s concept hauntology (re)emerged as the name for a paradoxical zeitgeist.  In ‘Specters of Marx’, Derrida argued that the hauntological was characterised by ‘a time out of joint’, and this broken time has been expressed in cultural objects that return to a wounded or distorted version of the past in flight from a waning sense of the present. Sometimes accused of nostalgia, the most powerful examples of hauntological culture actually show that nostalgia is no longer possible.

In conditions where pastiche has become normalised, the question has to be: nostalgia compared to what? James Bridle has recently argued that ‘the opposite of hauntology … [is] to demand the radically new’, but hauntology in fact operates as a kind of thwarted preservation of such demands in conditions where – for the moment at least – they cannot be met. Whereas cyberspace-time tends towards the generation of cultural moments that are as interchangeable as transnational franchise outlets, hauntology involves the staining of particular places with time – albeit a time that is out of joint. In this lecture, Fisher will explore the hauntological culture of the last few years in relation to the question of place, using examples from music (Burial, The Caretaker, Ekoplekz, Richard Skelton), film (Chris Petit, Patrick Keiller) and fiction (Alan Garner, David Peace).

MARK FISHER, DEPACIFICATION PROGRAM: FROM CAPITALIST REALISM TO POST-CAPITALISM

WHEN: Thursday 5 May 2011, 6:30pm
WHERE: Room 471, 20 Cooper Square [East 5th and Bowery]
FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

”It would be best, perhaps, to think of an alternate world – better to say the alternate world, our alternate world – as one contiguous with ours but without any connections or access to it. Then, from time to time, like a diseased eyeball in which disturbing flashes of light are perceived or like those baroque sunbursts in which rays from another world suddenly break into this one, we are reminded that Utopia exists and that other systems, other spaces, are still possible” (Fredric Jameson, ‘Valences of the Dialectic’).

In his 2009 book ‘Capitalist Realism’, Mark Fisher started to explore some of the affective, psychological and political consequences of the deeply entrenched belief that there is no alternative to capitalism. After 1989, capital seemed to enjoy full spectrum dominance of both global space and the unconscious. Every imaginable future was capitalist.  What has been mistaken for post-political apathy, Fisher argued, was a pervasive sense of reflexive impotence in the face of a neoliberal ideological program which sought to subordinate all of culture to the imperatives of business. The subject of post-Fordist capitalism is no passive dupe; this subject actively participates in an ‘interpassive’ corporate culture which solicits our involvement and encourages us to ‘join the debate’.

As Fisher argues in the book, education has been at the forefront of this process, with teachers and lecturers locked into managerialist self-surveillance, and students induced into the role of consumers.

In the eighteen months since ‘Capitalist Realism’ was published, the neoliberal program has been seriously compromised, but capitalist realism has intensified – with austerity programs pushed through on the basis that it is unthinkable that capitalism should be allowed to fail. At the same time, this new, more desperate form of capitalist realism has also faced unexpected challenges from a militancy growing in Europe, the Middle East and even in the heartlands of neoliberalism such as the UK and the US. Now that history has started up again, and Jameson’s ‘baroque sunbursts’ flare brighter than they have for a generation, we can begin to pose questions that had receded into the unimaginable during the high pomp of neoliberal triumphalism: what might a post-capitalism look like,
and how can we get there?

Fisher will argue that the Left will only succeed if it can reclaim modernity from a neoliberal Right that has lost control of it. This entails understanding how the current possibilities for agency are contoured and constrained by the machinery of what Deleuze and Foucault called the Control Society, including cyberspace, the media landscape, psychic pathologies and pharmacology – failures to act are not failures of will, and all the will in the world will not eliminate capitalism. It also entails recognising that neoliberalism’s global hegemony arose from capturing desires which it could not satisfy. A genuinely new Left must be shaped by those desires, and not be lulled, once again, by the logics of failed revolts.

Queries: ss162@nyu.edu

***END***

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

‘Maximum levels of boredom

Disguised as maximum fun’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjxeHvvhJQ (live, at the Belle View pub, Bangor, north Wales)  

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Roy Bhaskar

CRITICAL REALISM RESEARCH SEMINARS

Critical Realism Research Seminars: An interdisciplinary critical realist research seminar series in legal, political and educational theory and practice in its social context.

Spring Term 2011

14th Feb, Alex Callinicos, ‘Marxism and Critical Realism’

21st March, Kathryn Dean, ‘Capitalism and Analytical Thinking: A Dialectical Account’

Seminars take place in London, Institute of Education Committee Room 1, at 5:30pm

Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1H 0AL

Contacts:
Professor Roy Bhaskar, R.bhaskar@ioe.ac.uk
Craig Reeves, Craig.reeves@brunel.ac.uk
Professor Alan Norrie, A.W.Norrie@warwick.ac.uk

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LONDON SEMINAR ON CONTEMPORARY MARXIST THEORY – UPDATE 9th FEBRUARY 2011
 
 
9th February, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, S2.28
 
Alberto Toscano (Goldsmiths, University of London)
Marxism: A Realism of the Abstract?
The global economic and financial crisis has witnessed a deepening of interest in different forms of critical and radical thought and practice. This seminar will explore the new perspectives that have been opened up by interventions of contemporary Marxist theory in this political and theoretical conjuncture. It involves collaboration among Marxist scholars based in several London universities, including Brunel University, King’s College London, and the School of Oriental and African Studies. Guest speakers – from both Britain and abroad – will include a wide range of thinkers engaging with many different elements of the various Marxist traditions, as well as with diverse problems and topics. The aim of the seminar is to promote fruitful debate and to contribute to the development of more robust Marxist analysis. It is open to all.

 

2010/11 Seminar Series
  
9th November, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, S-1.04, Raked Lecture Theatre
Massimiliano Tomba (University of Padua)
The Historical Materialist at work: Re-reading “The Eighteenth Brumaire”
 
15th December, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, K.3.11 Raked Lecture Theatre
Peter D. Thomas (Brunel University)
Contours of Contemporary Western Marxism
  
19th January, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, S2.28
David Leopold (University of Oxford)
Stathis Kouvelakis (King’s College, London)
In Search of the Young Marx’s Politics
 
9th February, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, S2.28
Alberto Toscano (Goldsmiths, University of London)
Marxism: A Realism of the Abstract?
 
2nd March, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, room TBA
Gérard Duménil (Université de Paris X Nanterre)
Explaining the crisis of neoliberalism: Neither the falling profit rate nor mere financial craze
23rd March, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, room TBA
Esther Leslie (Birkbeck College)
Flat Screens and Liquid Crystals: On the Politics of Aesthetics and Vice Versa
4th May, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, room TBA
Costas Lapavitsas (SOAS)
Three Cheers for Marxist Monetary Theory: The Eurozone through the Prism of World Money
18th May, 5pm
King’s College London, Strand Campus, K.3.11 Raked Lecture Theatre
Gail Day (University of Leeds)
Dialectical Passions: Art Theory, Art History and Marxism

For further information, please contact:
Alex Callinicos, European Studies, King’s: alex.callinicos@kcl.ac.uk
Stathis Kouvelakis, European Studies, King’s:
stathis.kouvelakis@kcl.ac.uk
Costas Lapavitsas, Economics, SOAS:
cl5@soas.ac.uk
Peter Thomas, Politics and History, Brunel:
PeterD.Thomas@brunel.ac.uk

 

 

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Lenin

HISTORICAL MATERIALISM VOLUME 18 NUMBER 3 (2010)

Historical Materialism: Research in Critical Marxist Theory
Volume 18 Issue 3, 2010

http://www.brill.nl./hima

http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/brill/hm

CONTENTS

Article
Gene Ray
Dialectical Realism and Radical Commitments: Brecht and Adorno on 
Representing Capitalism

Symposium on Lars Lih’s ‘Lenin Rediscovered’
Paul Blackledge
Editorial Introduction

Ronald Grigor Suny
Reconsidering Lenin: What Can Be Said about ‘What Is to Be Done?’

Robert Mayer
One Step Forward, Two Steps Back: On Lars Lih’s Lenin

Chris Harman
Lenin Rediscovered?

Alan Shandro
Text and Context in the Argument of Lenin’s ‘What Is to Be Done?’

Paul Le Blanc
Rediscovering Lenin

Lars T. Lih
Lenin Disputed

Interventions
Matteo Mandarini
Critical Thoughts on the Politics of Immanence

Mario Tronti
Workerism and Politics

Review Articles
Paul Flenley
On Oktyabr’skaya Revolyutsiya i Fabzavkomy [The October Revolution and Factory-Committees] edited by Steve A. Smith, and Oktyabr’skaya  Revolyutsia i Fabzavkomy, Volume 3, Second Edition and Oktyabr’skaya  Revolyutsiya i Fabzavkomy: Materialy po istorii fabrichno-zavodskikh komitetov, Volume 4, edited by  Yoshimasa Tsuji

Jeffery R. Webber
on Fernando Ignacio Leiva’s Latin American Neostructuralism: The  Contradictions of Post-Neoliberal Development

David Parker
on Heide Gerstenberger’s Impersonal Power. History and Theory of the  Bourgeois State

Historical-Critical Dictionary of Marxism
Dick Boer
The Imaginary

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Marxism and Art

THE QUESTION OF CLASS: AN ONGOING CHALLENGE TO ART HISTORY

A Conference in Honour of Andrew Hemingway

Saturday 19 June 2010
Gustav Tuck Lecture Theatre
University College London

Organisers: Warren Carter and Frederic J. Schwartz

10.00 Introduction

Fred Schwartz (University College London)

10.15 Landscape/Class/Ideology
Chair: Tom Gretton (University College London)

Alan Wallach (College of William & Mary)
“Toward a Social History of Mid-Nineteenth Century American Landscape Painting”

Alex Potts (University of Michigan)
“The Shifting Terrain of Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Art Histories”

12.15 Lunch

13.15 Marxism & Modernism
Chair: Warren Carter (University College London)

Gail Day (University of Leeds)
“Realism, Totality, and the Militant Citoyen: Or, What Has Lukacs To Do With Contemporary Art?”

Respondents:
Esther Leslie (Birkbeck, University of London)
Michael Corris (Sheffield Hallam University)
Jody Patterson (Ecole Normale Supérieure)
Barnaby Haran (University College London)

15.15 Tea

15.15 Marxist Historiography & Art History
Chair: Matthew Beaumont (University College London)

Steve Edwards (Open University)
“Forms of History”

Respondents:
Caroline Arscott (Courtauld Institute)
John Roberts (University of Wolverhampton)
Fred Schwartz (University College London)
Fred Orton (University of Leeds)

17.45 Valediction

Pete Smith (Thames Valley University)

18.00 Closing Remarks

Tamar Garb (University College London)

Admission is free and all are welcome, but spaces must be reserved.
Please contact Warren Carter (w.carter@ucl.ac.uk) by Wednesday 9 June.

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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