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Trans* and Psychoanalytic Perspectives on Contemporary Cultural Issues

Reading Group organized by Alvaro Lopez (a.a.lopeznavarro@uva.nl) and Mina Burnside (theminahunt@gmail.com).

The Trans* and Psychoanalytic Perspectives reading group returns in the academic year 2021-2022 in a full-year format to address and examine in depth some of the issues addressed in its previous edition. The critical domain and scope of trans studies and psychoanalysis comprises a number of different—and sometimes diverging—fields of research, theoretical stances, and methodological approaches. From sexuality and embodiment to cultural manifestations, from social and political dynamics to intricate processes of subject formation, trans and psychoanalytic perspectives offer a critical tool to tackle the complexities of the contemporary context. Yet more often than not, these perspectives are perceived as detached from each other, or even oppositional and conflicting. However, unlikely as the trans-psychoanalysis paring may sound, these perspectives have more in common than it would appear at first sight. Moreover, as recent approaches in trans studies and psychoanalysis attest to, their critical perspectives cross paths and enter into conversation with each other, enabling an insightful tool for assessment and analysis of the multiple transformations, situations, and pressing issues of the present moment.

As in its previous edition, the aim of this reading group is to approach recent works on trans studies and psychoanalysis as a means to open a space for a critical engagement with these perspectives and the insights they provide with regard to contemporary cultural issues: from transphobia, violence, pandemic precarity, Black Lives Matter, to new gender registration policies in the EU. For each of the group sessions, two texts/approaches will be selected in order to address a specific contemporary issue. For its first session, the group will take as a point of departure the anti-gender movement in Europe and its connections to social, political, academic, and cultural stances.  This academic year, the group’s monthly meetings will take place from 4 pm to 6 pm at UvA (exact location to be confirmed upon registration). The first sessions will take place on October 13,  November 17, December 15, and January 12. The following sessions will be subsequently announced to registered participants.

Once again, we invite scholars, researchers, and graduate students interested in widening the academic and critical engagement with these perspectives and their critical tackling of contemporary issues and events. This reading group is a collaboration between ASCA, ICON, NICA and NOG. RMA and PhD students can obtain up to 3 ECTS: 2 EC for participating in at least 5 of the sessions, and an extra EC for writing a final reflection of about 2.000 words addressing the potential of these fields of research in relation to contemporary cultural issues (please state the number of credits desired upon registration).To join, please email the organizers Alvaro Lopez (a.a.lopeznavarro@uva.nl) and Mina Burnside (m.burnside@uu.nl).