Whether we think of critical theory in the narrow or in the broad sense, culture is always central to it. For the thinkers around Max Horkheimer, Theodor W. Adorno, Herbert Marcuse and also Walter Benjamin, the tradition that reaches from German idealism via Marx to Nietzsche, Max Weber and Freud forms the groundwork of a theory that is aware of cultural self-reflection as necessary part of philosophy and social theory. The same is true, more or less, for the thinkers of so-called postmodernism, poststructuralism and philosophy of difference for whom even more Nietzsche is the turning point, accompanied now by Heidegger. But it is well known that culture has several basic meanings: it means, normatively, a desirable state of human life, descriptively a way of living that allows for cultures in the plural, and sociologically a subsystem of society being specialized to world-interpretations or symbolic understanding.
A contemporary critical theory of culture, thus, has to deal with questions like: What do we need to still argue for a normative concept of culture or good life? How is it reconcilable with the liberal-democratic and “postmodern” pluralism of ways of living and thinking? How does critique work at all under conditions where there are no transcendent criteria any more? What is the distinct value of certain forms of art for philosophy and society? Can we learn something from certain cultural phenomena – be it from distinct art, pop-art or everyday life - about our epoch? And, finally, what is the specific value of the Humanities for societal self-reflection?
Giving an answer to such questions needs historical, systematic and interdisciplinary approaches at the same time. The colloquium is organized intermittently to bring together scholars from various academic disciplines and also non-academic professions.
December 14, 2023, 16:00-17:30
Location: OTM 147, Faculty Room I (1.17a)
Carla Milani Damião
“Rock Figurations and Philosophy: The "Afterlife" of Rock Painting in Palestina de Goiás, Brazil”
The starting point of my talk is the figuration of a "scene" in an archaeological shelter which is currently made visible through the processes of photographic and computational digitization. By focusing on this specific case, I initiate a dialogue with theories of image that propose the disconnection of images from the observer, considering the notion of object agency. Among the authors are Walter Benjamin, W.J.T. Mitchell, Phillipe Descola and Carlos Fausto. The conventional duality of subject and object is disrupted. On the one hand, the object can survive the constraints of everyday existence and endure the unforgiving forces of the natural world, all without relying on protective technology. On the other hand, technical reproducibility enhances the object's capacity to endure visually, yet it will remain imperceptible or hidden from observers for millennia. From a Benjaminian perspective, the referential "scene" not only survives ("überlebt") but "afterlives" ("fortlebt"). It endures indefinitely, regardless of whether someone becomes aware of it. Broadly speaking, my research is anchored in the realm of image theories and centers on the particular "scene" I have chosen for investigation, linking some concepts with the more contemporary decolonial discourse in Brazil.
Carla Milani Damião is Associate Professor in Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art at the Faculty of Philosophy of the Federal University of Goiás, Brazil, where she supervises students in the Postgraduate Programs in Philosophy and Visual Arts. Having held fellowships at the Free University of Berlin, the University of Amsterdam, and the University of Padua, she is currently pursuing a PhD in Visual Anthropology and completing a degree in Archeology. She is the author of On the Decline of Sincerity. Philosophy and autobiography from Jean-Jacques Rousseau to Walter Benjamin (Loyola, 2006); and co-editor and translator of Walter Benjamin: Parisian diary and other writings (Editora Hedra, 2020). In addition to numerous articles, her publications include several anthologies (see e.g.: www.esteticasnocentro.org) and special journal issues in aesthetics.
9 November 2023:
Critical Cultural Theory with Michael Thomas and Katia Hay
Critical Cultural Theory seminar (CCT) with two presentations followed by discussion: Michael Thomas and Katia Hay | Date: November 9, 15:00-17:00 | Location: OTM 147, Faculty Room I (1.17a)
Michael Thomas, “W.E.B. Du Bois and the Fictions of Race”
Du Bois' famous question, "How does it feel to be a problem?," points to the role of race in felt experience, both as a division between races and within racialized peoples. This question also points to a wider role of the experience of race in Du Bois' early work, which traverses the ontological, epistemic, and socio-political dimensions of the concept. In this essay, I argue that Du Bois’ early essays address this problem through the use of racial fictions, which expose and subvert forms of epistemic, political, and cultural racism in the service of Du Bois’ own projects. In addition, they help us synthesize these different functions of the concept of race and its associated narratives into a theory of racialization grounded in sensual experience.
Michael Thomas is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy in Critical Cultural Theory at the University of Amsterdam, who also teaches in Media Studies. His current project, Models of Black Thought, develops interpretations of the works of W.E.B. Du Bois, James Baldwin, and Audre Lorde as models of Black Thought that aim to produce aesthetic interventions in racial modernity that avoid bifurcations between psychological and structural approaches to racism and essentialist understandings of racial consciousness.
Katia Hay, “Is There Joy in Nihilism? – A reconstruction of Nietzsche's relation to joy and laughter from 1882 to 1887”
This paper is thought of as a draft to the epilogue to a book on Laughter and Reason in Nietzsche’s philosophy. I trace the role that laughter and joy play in Nietzsche’s thinking from the first edition of The Gay Science (1882) to the last edition (1887), for which Nietzsche added a new Preface and the fifth book (1887). In this way I address the question regarding the shape that life affirmation might take after the diagnosis of ‘Death of God’. For this, I take into account Nietzsche’s posthumous notes, where the notion of nihilism plays a central role, and where there seems to be no space left for laughter and joy in any way. These posthumous are the notes that Heidegger refers to in his Lectures on ‘Nietzsches Metaphysik’ from the 1940s. The last part of my paper questions the extent to which Heidegger may not be more nihilistic than Nietzsche himself.
Katia Hay is Assistant Professor for Continental Philosophy and Aesthetics at the University of Amsterdam. She has previously worked at Leiden University, the University of Freiburg, The University of Lisbon and the New School for Social Research in New York. Her PhD was on the notion of the tragic in FWJ Schelling’s Philosophy, and she is now working on a book project on the role of laughter and comedy in Nietzsche’s writings.
11 October 2023
Two talks--Adorno on the Essay // Film & the Anthropocene
15:00-17:00, Oude Turfmarkt, Faculty Room I
Jack Dignam, Notes on Essayism: Not a Form, But an Attitude
A genre that, perhaps more than any other, wants to meander, while also arriving at wholeness akin to an artwork; it tends to unity and disparity in equal measure, completion and fragmentation, divulgence and exaggeration. How might we write about essays while simultaneously holding tight to these contradictions? In this talk, I'll use Theodor Adorno's 'The Essay as Form' as a staging ground from which I'll probe the genre as a whole, sketching a route by which we can move from theorising essays as a fixed form to a modality; something more elusive, but still rigorous.
Jack Dignam is a PhD candidate in Philosophy at ASCA, working on a dissertation on Adorno’s conception of enthusiasm.
Eduardo Carli de Moraes, Philosophy and Film in the Anthropocene
A new geological epoch has begun, the Anthropocene, in which humanity has become a geophysical force that has a profound and unprecedented impact on all ecosystems and climates on our planet. How this event can be dealt with by thinkers in the field of Philosophy and Film is our main problem demanding clarification. The main aim of this talk is to share some philosophical reflections about artworks in the audiovisual field - mainly science-fiction films and documentaries - that have been depicting, criticizing or creating narratives (many of them venturing into futurology) about this current predicament. The talk is based upon on-going PhD research that intends to interpret such films as relevant cultural production that can aid us in deciphering humanity's dilemmas in the Anthropocene, and it proposes, as conceptual keys to unlock some doors for critical thought, a dialectics between utopia and dystopia.
Eduardo Carli de Moraes is a filmmaker and PhD candidate in Philosophy at the Federal University of Goiás in Goiânia, Brazil, completing a dissertation titled "Between Utopia and Dystopia: Film-Philosophy in the Anthropocene." He is currently a visitor in the Philosophy department and at ASCA.
20th April 2023
Workshop on 'Art, Play and Philosophy'
Time&Place: 14-18h. Doelenzaal UB (University Library)
The Critical Cultural Theory Group cordially invites you to a workshop on 'Art, Play and Philosophy'. Three philosophers and an artist will explore the concept of 'play' in relation to art and life. Taking cue from different philosophical and artistic traditions, they all underline the vital role of 'play' in the way we relate to ourselves, the world and each other. All welcome!
Guests and talks :
Anne Boissière (Prof. em. Philosophy of Art, Lille University)
14-15.00 ‘Playing Aliveness and Art’
Stephen Harris (Assistant Professor in Indian and Comparative Philosophy, Leiden Univ.)
15-16.00 ‘Advaita Vedānta: līlā and the Ontology of Play.’
Monique Roelofs (Prof of Philosophy of Art and Culture, UvA)
16-17.00 ‘Shaping Lines of Connection: Play as a Component of a Decolonial Feminist Aesthetics’
Laurie Schram (artist based in Den Haag)
17-18.00 ‘Teasing Rigidity’
Anne Boissière, is Professor Emerita in Philosophy of Art at Lille University, France. She works at the intersection of critical theory, phenomenology, psychoanalysis and aesthetics. More recently she has worked on the notion of play and improvisation in specific relation to voice. She works regularly with the Museum of Contemporary Art (LaM) in Lille. She is author of Le mouvement à l’œuvre, entre jeu et art, Sesto San Giovanni, Mimésis, 2018; Chanter Narrer Danser, Contribution à une philosophie du sentir, Sampzon, Delatour France, 2016 ; Musique Mouvement, Paris, Manucius, 2014 ; La pensée musicale de Theodor W. Adorno, l’épique et le temps, Paris, Beauchesne, 2011
Stephen Harris, is Assistant Professor (Universitair Docent) at Leiden University’s Institute for Philosophy. He specializes in Cross-Cultural and Indian philosophy, with a particular interest in Buddhist ethical texts. He has published articles in a number of academic journals. His recent research focuses on the moral thought of the 8th century CE Mahayana Buddhist philosopher, Śāntideva, and in particular his views on happiness and suffering.
Monique Roelofs, is Professor of Philosophy of Art and Culture at the University of Amsterdam. Her research explores the relation between aesthetics and politics, with a special focus on the dynamics of race, gender, nation, coloniality, and the global. She is the author of Arts of Address: Being Alive to Language and The World (Columbia UP, 2020) and The Cultural Promise of the Aesthetic (2014). Roelofs has recently completed a new book manuscript, Aesthetics, Address, and the Politics of Culture. She is also coauthoring a book on aesthetics and temporality in Latinx and Latin America and coediting the collection Black Art and Aesthetics: Relationalities, Interiorities, Reckonings (Bloomsbury, forthcoming November 2023).
Laurie Schram, graduated with work mainly focused on currency; playing with money as a material is a means to examine its power and the promise it bears. Her work revolves around themes of a socio-political nature and conceptualises status through objects. In recent years Schram has focussed on collaborative work. Since re-locating to The Netherlands after nearly two decades of living and working in the UK Schram has set up Space Fantastic and had a retrospective exhibition with Unperceived existence at Gallery Shush.
L’Intrigue dénouée: Mythe, littérature et communauté dans la pensée de Jean-Luc Nancy
Book launch L’Intrigue dénouée: Mythe, littérature et communauté dans la pensée de Jean-Luc Nancy (Leiden: Brill 2022) by Aukje van Rooden | 1 December 2022
Aukje van Rooden will discuss her new book and her general outlook on philosophy with her colleague Stefan Niklas and all who would like to join the conversation. For those interested it is possible to receive the introduction of the book in advance.
This is the first book to provide a systematic investigation of the relation between community and literature in the work of Jean-Luc Nancy. It develops the original claim that this relation has to be understood as a rethinking of myth. Traversing the entirety of Nancy’s vast oeuvre, the author offers an incomparable account of the ways in which Nancy’s central questions of community and literature are linked together. Moreover, by putting this linkage in terms of ‘myth’, this book situates Nancy’s work within a larger tradition, leading from German Romanticism to contemporary theories of the social relevance of literature.
Aukje van Rooden is Assistant Professor in Philosophy of Art and Culture.
If you wish to receive the (French) introduction of the book, please contact A.vanRooden@uva.nl.
14 June 2022: Earthquakes and Elemental Loss: Rethinking Disorientation Beyond the Anthropocene
13h00-14h30, Oude Manhuispoort A.0.08
We’d like to invite you to our next Critical Cultural Theory seminar with Marjolein Oele, who will be presenting a talk on Earthquakes and Elemental Loss: Rethinking Disorientation Beyond the Anthropocene
Marjolein Oele is Professor of Philosophy at the University of San Francisco. She was trained as an MD at the Free University of Amsterdam, has a Master's Degree in Philosophy from the University of Amsterdam and received her PhD in Philosophy in 2007 from Loyola University Chicago. Her research intertwines Ancient Philosophy, Continental Philosophy, Environmental Philosophy and Philosophy of Medicine. She is the author of E-Co-Affectivity: Exploring Pathos at Life's Material Interfaces (SUNY, 2020) and co-editor of Ontologies of Nature: Continental Perspectives and Environmental Reorientations (Springer, 2017). She is currently working on a new book manuscript, entitled Elemental Loss. Her articles have been published in a range of journals, including Ancient Philosophy, Configurations, Environmental Philosophy, Epochê, Graduate Faculty Philosophy Journal, Research in Phenomenology and Radical Philosophy Review. She is a member of the executive board of the Pacific Association for the Continental Tradition (PACT) and she joined the editorial board of the journal Environmental Philosophy in 2017 as its book review editor.
If you like to read draft of the chapter in advance (available from June 6), please contact Maarten van Tunen, firstname.lastname@example.org.
17 May 2022 : Aesthetic Meaning-Making and Transformation: Art, Intimacy, and Myth
11h00-13h00, Oude Turfmarkt, Faculteitskamer
Stefan Niklas (Philosophy) and Pınar Türer (ASCA PhD candidate) will be presenting and discussing new work.
Stefan Niklas: Notes on Cassirer, Star Wars, and the Aesthetic Transformation of Mythical Consciousness
This essay argues for a reinterpretation of myth as an autonomous modality of the human consciousness and the significance of inquiring into pop-cultural phenomena to understand it.
Pınar Türer: Thinking Intimacy through Maria Lai: Depth, Subtlety, and Meaning-making
This paper is a draft of a chapter in my Ph.D. thesis titled Ethics of Intimacy: Reconfiguring Relational Knowledge Practices through Transnational Art and Literature. As I think with the sewn works of the Sardinian artist Maria Lai, in this chapter I set out to unpack a part of intimacy’s complex nature – that of depth and meaning-making, inspired by the tactile qualities of Lai’s works and her play with language and meaning through textile. Starting from the idea that intimacy, as a mode of relating, involves a sense of depth, I ask the question of how to think carefully about this depth without repeating the dualist model of surface/depth that at times becomes a ground for hierarchizing difference. Furthermore, what does this notion of depth give us to explore relationality and knowledge practices in intimacy? I propose that the “text” of the depths in intimacy is created, and/or read through subtle signs that open onto an abundance of meaning.
11-12 January 2022
Sharing finitude - in memoriam Jean-Luc Nancy
online, 14h00-19h00 CET, via zoom
The Critical Cultural Theory Group is co-hosting, together with the Leiden University Center for Continental Philosophy (LCCP) and Knooppunt Fenomenologie (Gent) a memorial symposium on Jean-Luc Nancy’s work. All are welcome.
Jean-Luc Nancy met death definitively in August 2021. One imagines that he had come close to death before, notably at the time when he had to endure a heart transplantation. This personal experience had major philosophical consequences: it did not lead to somber meditations of the shortness of life, but on the contrary to another kind of finite thinking, where finitude is thought as function of the necessary plurality of bodies which are the sense of the world: finitude is the very sharing of finitude. The sense of the world is nothing else than the singular plurality of bodies.
The work of Jean-Luc Nancy radiates a rare joy of life, but it is also very sensitive to what he called the ‘immonde’, the un-worlding that manifests itself as the eco-technical misery that presses the world of bodies. He diagnosed the fundamental philosophical reasons of this un- worlding, but above all he sought philosophical tools to re-world existence. Many of these tools are rooted in the polysemy of "sense," that leads Nancy's work to sensitive and even sensual questions of art, to questions of the sense of the world and of religion, and of course to questions of the way in which philosophy makes sense, word by word, enunciation by enunciation.
Wishing to share the emotion of Jean-Luc Nancy's passing away, we want above all to share the experience of thinking finitude with the help of his unique, singular work. This is why we invite you to a symposium in which all aspects of Nancy's abundant work will be discussed and new openings will be explored.
Speakers: Martin Crowley, Peter de Graeve, Ignaas Devisch, Alexander García Düttman, Juan-Manuel Garrido Wainer, Irving Goh, Ian James, Esa Kirkkopelto, Susanna Lindberg, Artemy Magun, Boyan Manchev, Frédéric Neyrat, Anne O'Byrne, Aukje van Rooden, Marcia Sá Cavalcante Schuback, Georgios Tsagdis, Paul Willemarck
The program will be updated on the symposium website.
People interested in the symposium should register with the conference secretary Donovan Stewart: email@example.com
3 December 2021
A Feminist Mythology
15h00-17h00, Oude Manhuispoort A0.09
We cordially invite everyone to the next Critical Cultural Theory Seminar with C Friday, 3rd December 15-17h at Oudemanhuispoort (OMHP), A0.09. We will discuss Bottici’s new book A Feminist Mythology (Bloomsbury 2021). A section from the book will be provided as background reading.
A Feminist Mythology takes us on a poetic journey through the canonical myths of femininity, testing them from the point of view of our modern condition. A myth is not an object, but rather a process, one that Chiara Bottici practises by exploring different variants of the myth of “womanhood” through first- and third-person prose and poetry. We follow a series of myths that morph into each other, disclosing ways of being woman that question inherited patriarchal orders. In this metamorphic world, story-telling is not just a mix of narrative, philosophical dialogues and metaphysical theorizing: it is a current that traverses all of them by overflowing the boundaries it encounters. In doing so, A Feminist Mythology proposes an alternative writing style that recovers ancient philosophical and literary traditions from the pre-Socratic philosophers and Ovid's Metamorphoses to the philosophical novellas and feminist experimental writings of the last century.
Chiara Bottici is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Director of Gender and Sexuality Studies at the New School for Social Research in New York City.
Please contact Stefan Niklas (firstname.lastname@example.org) to register for the seminar and to receive a section of the book as background reading for preparation.
Please note that places are restricted, registration is therefore mandatory.
16-18 September 2021
What if Truth Were a Woman? On Nietzsche, Women, and Philosophy
The Critical Cultural Theory Group is co-hosting, together with the Friedrich Nietzsche Society and the Nova University of Lisbon, the 26th International Conference of the Friedrich Nietzsche Society on 16-18 September 2021.
Nietzsche’s writings abound in references to ‘woman’ and the feminine. His predominately controversial remarks on this subject pervade in his philosophical questioning about the notions of humanity, Western culture, nihilism, modernity, life and death, nature, suffering, art and creativity, illusion, truth and philosophy itself. It is therefore not surprising that his thoughts on women and the feminine should have raised diverse, and even opposed interpretations. What is perhaps more surprising is how these issues have remained somewhat under-interpreted. In other words: there is much more to be thought and said on this topic.
This conference addresses the mysterious, polemical and in many cases unexpected relationship that Nietzsche establishes between women and philosophical thought throughout his writings. Presenters will examine the way Nietzsche uses and thematizes the notion of ‘woman’ and the feminine (and related concepts such as motherhood, pregnancy, love, desire, difference, the representation of life and truth as a woman), the importance these concepts had for the development of his thought, and their intersection with other themes and ideas in his work. In addition, this conference considers the influence Nietzsche has had and may still be having in the development of feminist theories. The organizers therefore also invite discussions of feminist readings of Nietzsche and Nietzsche’s influence on Feminism.
Confirmed keynote speakers:
- Judith Norman (Trinity University, Texas)
- Paul Patton (Wuhan University)
- Maria Cristina Fornari (University of Salento)
- Sigríður Þorgeirsdóttir (University of Iceland)
Make sure you register on time so you have access to the schedule and the pre-recorded video conferences, since parallel sessions will only be for the discussion of papers.
13 September 2021
Boehme, Hegel, Schelling, and the Hermetic Theology of Evil
online, 17h-18h30, via zoom
The Critical Cultural Group cordially invites you to the following events and students from the tutorial on Schelling’s Freedom Essay, would like to invite you to the next Critical Cultural Theory Seminar, for which we are organizing a workshop with Prof. Sean J. McGrath The workshop will be dedicated to Schelling’s Freedom Essay, but we will be working with and discussing McGrath’s paper on: Boehme, Hegel, Schelling, and the Hermetic Theology of Evil
Abstract: Building on recent research exposing Hegel’s debt to esoteric Christianity (both Gnostic and Hermetic traditions), the aim of this paper is to show how Hegel and Schelling resolve an ambiguity in the Boehme’s theology of evil in opposing ways. Jacob Boehme notion of the individuation of God through the overcoming of opposition is the central paradigm for both Hegel’s and Schelling’s understanding of the role of evil in the life of God. Boehme remains ambiguous on the question of the modality of evil: Is it necessary to God’s self-unfolding, or is it rather an anarchic act that God permits in the interest of preserving the autonomy of finite freedom? If the former, Boehme becomes much more closely aligned to Gnosticism by identifying finitude with evil. This identification is shown to be exactly Hegel’s solution to the ambiguity, one Hegel opts for in the interest of maintaining the absolute rationality of the system. Hermeticism opposes Gnosticism on this point: for the Hermeticist, finitude / material being / nature is not evil but ‘of God,’ the means of his individuation. The conflict in interpretations of Boehme illuminates an often overlooked but essential difference between Gnosticism and Hermeticism. Schelling remains faithful to the Hermetic tradition by sacrificing system for the sake of preserving the contingency of evil, and disidentifying finitude and evil.
Sean J. McGrath researches and teaches in the areas of metaphysics, classical German philosophy (Kant to Heidegger), phenomenology and hermeneutics, and psychoanalysis. He is author of The Early Heidegger and Medieval Philosophy: Phenomenology for the Godforsaken (Catholic University of America Press, 2006, reprinted 2013). In 2008 he published a second book, Heidegger: A (Very) Critical Introduction (Eerdmans), which was commissioned by the Centre for Theology and Philosophy at the University of Nottingham. That same year he was awarded a Humboldt Fellowship for two years of research in Germany on the topic of the historical and systematic connections between psychoanalysis and German Idealism. The fruit of that research was published in 2012 as The Dark Ground of Spirit: Schelling and the Unconscious (Routledge). He is the co-editor of A Companion to Heidegger’s Phenomenology of Religious Life (Rodopi, 2010) and the editor of Analecta Hermeneutica, an annual journal on philosophical hermeneutics and related fields. He serves as the co-chair of the North American Schelling Society (which he founded with Jason Wirth in 2011) and a member of the executive committee of the Canadian Society for Continental Philosophy. Sean McGrath is currently working on a book dedicated to a further analysis of Boehme’s influence also in Schelling’s later works.
Please contact Katia Hay email@example.com if you would like the paper.
1 April 2021
Arts of Address: Being Alive to Language and the World
online, 16h-18h, via zoom
We are happy to invite you to the next Critical Cultural Theory Seminar on Arts of Address. Prof. Monique Roelofs will discuss her new book Arts of Address: Being Alive to Language and the World that has been published in 2020 with Columbia University Press
Modes of address are forms of signification that we direct at living beings, things, and places, and they at us and at each other. Seeing is a form of address. So are speaking, singing, and painting. Initiating or responding to such calls, we participate in encounters with the world. In readings of writers and artists ranging from Julio Cortázar to Jamaica Kincaid and from Martha Rosler to Pope.L, Roelofs demonstrates the centrality of address to freedom and a critical political aesthetics. Hume, Kant, and Foucault enter into conversation with Fanon and Anzaldúa. Drawing on a wide array of artistic and theoretical sources and challenging disciplinary boundaries, the book illuminates address’s significance to cultural existence and to our reflexive aesthetic engagement in it.
Monique Roelofs is Professor of Philosophy of Art and Culture and Chair of Critical Cultural Theory at the University of Amsterdam. Her research focuses on the relation between aesthetics and politics, with special attention paid to the dynamics of race, gender, coloniality, and the global. She is the author of Arts of Address: Being Alive to Language and The World (Columbia UP, 2020) and The Cultural Promise of the Aesthetic (Bloomsbury, 2014). Roelofs has a new book in the works titled “Aesthetics, Address, and the Politics of Culture.” She is also coauthoring a book on aesthetics and temporality in Latin(x) America and coediting an anthology on Black Aesthetics.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the zoom link and, if desired, the introduction and the first chapter of the book.
25 January 2021
Psychoanalysis From a Philosophical Perspective
online, 16-18h, via zoom
The Critical Cultural Theory group and ReMA students working on a tutorial on psychoanalysis would like to invite you to the next Critical Culture Theory Seminar on psychoanalysis from a philosophical perspective. Prof. Philippe van Haute and Prof. Herman Westerink will present and discuss their new book, 'Three Essays', which will be published this year as part of Routledge's 'History of Psychoanalysis Series' called 'Reading Freud's Three Essays on Sexuality'. It focuses on Freud's 1905 text, which has been neglected despite its central academic importance to the development of psychoanalysis.
Professor Philippe van Haute is a professor at the Centre for Contemporary European Philosophy, Radboud University Nijmegen. Prof van Haute has published extensively on Lacan and Freud and is a founding member of the International Society of Psychoanalysis and Philosophy. van Haute's books include Against Adaptation (2001), A Non-Oedipal Psychoanalysis? (with Tomas Geyskens, 2012), and Deconstructing Normativity, (2016) co-authored by Professor Herman Westerink.
Professor Herman Westerink is an associate professor at the Center for Contemporary European Philosophy, Radboud University Nijmegen. He is also a member of the International Society for Psychoanalysis and Philosophy. He has published numerous books and articles on psychoanalysis, including A Dark Trace (2009) and The Heart of Man’s Destiny (2012) and is editor of the book series Sigmund Freuds Werke: Wiener Interdisziplinäre Kommentare (Vienna University Press). His work focuses on the intersections between mental health, religion, identity formation, and Freud.
5 February 2021
The Toxic Reigns of Resentment
16h00-18h00, Oude Manhuispoort D.0.09, UvA
Filmscreening of the documentary 'The Toxic Reigns of Resentment' (directed and produced by Jürgen Schaflechner, Tim van den Hoff and Sjoerd van Tuinen) followed by an open discussion of the film with film director and anthropologist Jürgen Schaflechner (South Asia Institute, University of Heidelberg) and philosopher Sjoerd van Tuinen (Erasmus University Rotterdam).
Summary of the film: After the fall of the Soviet empire and the triumph of global capitalism, modernity appeared to keep its dual promise of liberty and equality. Only a few decades later, however, we witness an oppositional trend: A revival of nationalism paired with xenophobia, an increasing tribalization of politics, a public sphere oscillating between cruelty and sentimentality, and a Left caught up in wounded attachments. Social media, once the promise to give voice to the disempowered, link cognitive capitalism with a culture of trolling and hyper moralization. Algorithms programmed to monetarize outrage feed isolated information bubbles and produce what many call the era of post-truth politics.
How did we enter this toxic climate? Are these developments a response to the ubiquity of neoliberal market structures eroding the basic solidarities in our society? Has the spread of social media limited our ability to soberly deal with conflicting life worlds? And have both the left and the right given in to a form of politics where moralization and cynical mockery outdo collective visions of the future?
Featuring: Wendy Brown, Grayson Hunt, Rahel Jaeggi, Alexander Nehamas, Robert Pfaller, Gyan Prakash, Peter Sloterdijk, and Sjoerd van Tuinen
18 December 2019
Laughter and Philosophy in Schlegel and Nietzsche
14h00-16h00, Faculteitskamer, Oude Turfmarkt 147, UvA
Katia Hay Rodgers (University of Amsterdam) presents a working paper discussing the role of laughter in Nietzsche’s and Friedrich Schlegel’s philosophies. It addresses this topic by reference to Kant, showing how both authors respond to and challenge Kant’s (but not only Kant’s) ‘prejudice’ (as Nietzsche calls it in his ‘Gay Science’) against laughter and joy. The main question being: in what ways are their responses similar and where do they differ? In order to address this question I pay special attention to the way in which they incorporate ‘laughter’ in their writings.
17 October 2019
The Cynegetic Paradigm in Art, Politics and War
17h00-19h00, PC. Hoofthuis, room 1.15, UvA
In this lecture, Howard Caygill (Kingston University) will discuss what he coins the cynegetic paradigm in art, politics and war.