“The Singularity of Literary Cognition”
10am-1pm — Seminar
Professor Weber will be leading a seminar on the concept of singularity, addressing writings by Kafka, Freud, Derrida, Saussure, and Nietzsche. He has also made available a number of his as-yet-unpublished writings on the topic for seminar participants to read in preparation for the discussion.
Space is limited. Please register by sending an email to j.ng [at] gold.ac.uk to book a place and receive a copy of the readings.
“Singularity, Individuality, and the Delimitation of Life”
3pm-6pm — Public Lecture and Symposium
With responses from:
Josh Cohen (Goldsmiths)
Martin Crowley (Cambridge)
Paul Davies (Sussex)
The lecture and symposium are free and open to all.
Samuel Weber is an American philosopher and one of the leading thinkers across the disciplines of literary theory, philosophy, and psychoanalysis. He is the Paul de Man Chair at The European Graduate School / EGS, as well as the Avalon Foundation Professor of Humanities and the co-director of the Paris Program in Critical Theory at Northwestern University. Weber studied with Paul de Man and Theodor W. Adorno, whose book, Prisms, he co-translated into English. The translation of, and introduction to Theodor Adorno’s most important book of cultural criticism helped define the way in which the work of the Frankfurt School would be read and understood in the English-speaking world. Professor Weber has also published books on Balzac, Lacan, and Freud as well as on the relation of institutions and media to interpretation. In the 1980s he worked in Germany as a “dramaturge” in theater and opera productions. Out of the confrontation of that experience with his work in critical theory came the book, Theatricality as Medium, published in 2004 by Fordham University Press. In 2005 he published Targets of Opportunity: On the Militarization of Thinking, also at Fordham. His most recent book has been published in French under the title, Inquiétantes singularités (Disquieting Singularities). Translations of his writings into Chinese and Korean are currently in preparation. His current research projects include “Toward a Politics of Singularity” and “The Uncanny”.
Josh Cohen is Professor of Modern Literary Theory in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London. Professor Cohen’s key interests are in psychoanalysis (as both practising clinician and academic), literature and philosophy (especially Blanchot, Adorno and Benjamin), and American literature since the mid-nineteenth century (especially Melville, James, Stevens and contemporary fiction). He is on the advisory board of the Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought, and is currently working on a book on the place of inertia and lassitude in the history of culture and ideas.
Martin Crowley is Reader in Modern French Thought and Culture and Fellow of Queen’s College at the University of Cambridge. He is currently working on the question of hybrid or distributed agency, in particular the political possibilities offered by approaches to this question in the work of Bruno Latour, Isabelle Stengers, Bernard Stiegler, and Catherine Malabou; this is part of a wider project on French and Francophone philosophy and contemporary geopolitics. He is the author of: L’Homme sans: Politiques de la finitude (Lignes, 2009; with an afterword by Jean-Luc Nancy); The New Pornographies: Explicit Sex in Recent French Fiction and Film (co-authored with Victoria Best; Manchester University Press, 2007); Robert Antelme: L’humanité irréductible (Lignes/Éditions Léo Scheer, 2004); Robert Antelme: Humanity, Community, Testimony (Legenda, 2003), and Duras, Writing, and the Ethical: Making the Broken Whole (OUP, 2000); and the editor of Quels matérialismes? Pour quels mondes? (Lignes, October 2016), Contact! The Art of Touch/L’Art du toucher (L’Esprit Créateur, Fall 2007), and Dying Words: The Last Moments of Writers and Philosophers (Rodopi, 2000).
Paul Davies is Reader in Philosophy and Co-Director of the Centre for Literature and Philosophy at the University of Sussex. He researches and teaches in aesthetics and the philosophy of religion.
Contact: j.ng [at] gold.ac.uk