The Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought, Goldsmiths University of London

Research Centre run jointly between the Departments of Sociology and English and Comparative Literature at Goldsmiths University, London


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Singularity’s -abilities: In Celebration of Samuel Weber’s 80th Birthday (1 Dec 2020)

Please join us for Singularity’s -abilities: In Celebration of Samuel Weber’s 80th Birthday this Tuesday December 1st at 9am CST. Speakers, agenda, and registration info below.

Presentations will be in English and German. All times are local to Chicago, USA.

Speakers:

9:00am – 10:00am — Singularity’s Inscriptions

Isabelle Alfandary – Learning to Read with Sam Weber
Julia Ng – Whistling Lillabullero
Hans-Jörg Rheinberger – Schreiben und Experimentieren
Bernard Geoghegan – Theatricality and AI
(Moderator: James Martel)

10:15am – 11:15am — Singularity’s Philosophy

Peter Fenves – Singularity, Again
Astrid Deuber-Mankowsky – The Ever New Angel
Diego Rosello – The Task of Thanking: Thanking as Thinking with Samuel Weber
Laura Chiesa – tba
(Moderators: James Martel, Julia Ng)

11:45am-12:45pm — Singularity’s Politics

Marian Hobson – How can classification be violent? Weber and Derrida
Javier Burdman – Sam Weber’s Response to Lyotard’s Just Gaming and the Elusive Link between Deconstruction and Politics
James Martel – Singularity and the Commandment: another form of law
Héctor Castaño – Singularity in Translation and the Economy of Cultural Difference 
(Moderator: Julia Ng)

1:00pm – 1:30pm Response by Samuel Weber

Organized by Jörg Kreienbrock, James Martel, Julia Ng, and generously co-sponsored by Northwestern University, San Francisco State University, and the Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought at Goldsmiths, University of London

REGISTER HERE for Zoom link


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CANCELLED: Elsa Dorlin – The Police and the Violence of the Democratic State (Dec 2)

NB: DUE TO UNFORESEEN CIRCUMSTANCES, THIS TALK HAS BEEN CANCELLED

The Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought at Goldsmiths, University of London cordially invites you to its Lecture Series 20/21 on “Critiques of Violence”:

The Police and the Violence of the Democratic State 

Elsa Dorlin (Paris 8)

Wednesday, 2 December 2020 

4:00-6:00pm GMT

Zoom 

(please visit https://gold-ac-uk.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_UFhcE8JZRSqz5DY894LTYQ to register)

In my book Se défendreUne philosophie de la violence (Defending Oneself: A Philosophy of Violence), a major reference is missing: Walter Benjamin’s text, Toward the Critique of Violence (1921). Not that the text was not relevant, nor that Benjamin’s work and the thought were not familiar to me. It was by following the theses On the Concept of History that I initiated my genealogical approach to the notion of constellated time; but it was by tacitly shadowing Benjamin, grasping in the breaches of history for what belongs to an ontology of divine violence – of which revolutionary violence is like the replica and imprint – that I made explicit my intention to turn to muscle rather than law in order to think self-defense, because “there is something rotten in the law”.  

Toward the Critique of Violence is never cited in Se défendre, and yet this reference is there as a foundation, an inaugural starting point: all of its tragic protagonists – the state, natural law, positive law, the working class, the concept of property, the critique of the contract, life and death, the revolution, but also the mystical part of the carnal gesture that saves – are reanimated in the book I wanted to write. As a hidden reference, it is the fictitious dialogue between Walter Benjamin (but also Sorel) and Frantz Fanon that is deployed there. The critique of state violence, of the state itself – of right, of law, of the legal contract – and of their attendant mythologies is at the heart of my reflection.  

In this presentation, I would like to unfold this silent reference and extend the reflections of Se défendre by attempting to write what could be the last “missing” chapter of the book. A ghost chapter on the present, on the immediate reality from which I had deliberately kept myself at a distance, so difficult it is to think when our thoughts are glued to the present. At the crossroads of the present, I find Benjamin facing the democratic state, its police and their founding or constitutive violence; I find the French State and its police and the question: how to depose them? 

About the speaker: 

Elsa Dorlin is Professor of Social and Political Philosophy at the University of Paris 8 Vincennes/Saint-Denis. She is the author of several books, including La Matrice de la race. Généalogie sexuelle et coloniale de la nation française (Paris: La Découverte, 2006) and Se Défendre. Une philosophie de la violence (Paris: Zones, 2017; Suhrkamp, 2020; Verso, forthcoming), Frantz Fanon Book Prize from the Caribbean Philosophical Association 2018.

Contact: centreforphilosophyandcriticalthought@gold.ac.uk 


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Call for Papers: “Tragedy and Philosophy,” a CPCT conference (3-4 June, 2020; submission deadline 1 April, 2020) **POSTPONED TO AY2020-21**

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CALL FOR PAPERS:
Tragedy and Philosophy

** N.B.: IN LIGHT OF THE COVID-19 SITUATION THE CONFERENCE WILL BE POSTPONED TO AY2020-21, LIKELY EARLY DECEMBER 2020. DETAILS WILL BE ANNOUNCED WHEN FINAL DATES HAVE BEEN CONFIRMED. PLEASE CONTINUE TO SEND US YOUR ABSTRACTS; THE DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS HAS NOW BEEN EXTENDED TO 1 SEPTEMBER 2020.**

3-4 June 2020
Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought
Goldsmiths, University of London

Deadline for submissions: 1 April 2020 **New deadline: 1 September 2020

CONFIRMED SPEAKERS
Tina Chanter (University of Newcastle)
Rebecca Comay (University of Toronto)
Jeremy Matthew Glick (Hunter College)
Bonnie Honig (Brown University)
Miriam Leonard (University College London)
Manfred Posani Löwenstein (Istituto Italiano per gli Studi Storici)

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Murderous Consent — A Symposium with Marc Crépon (25 Oct 2019)

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Murderous Consent — A Symposium with Marc Crépon

Friday 25 October 2019

3-7pm

Richard Hoggart Building 137

Marc Crépon (École Normale Supérieure, Paris) is joined by 5 panelists in discussion of his newly translated work on the violence in which we are structurally complicit.

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Primitivism Now – a workshop (29.10)

in collaboration with The Writing and Society Research Centre, Western Sydney University

29 October 2019

10.30-17.30

Deptford Town Hall Council Chamber 

[please note the venue change from a previous announcement]

PRIMITIVISM NOW is a one-day workshop featuring speakers from a range of disciplines, from literary theory to philosophy, politics to art history. They will consider whether it is possible to think anew about primitivism, a field whose theoretical underpinnings have largely lain dormant since the poststructural and postcolonial critiques of primitivism in the 1980s and 90s. Continue reading


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Baudelaire and Philosophy—A British Society of Aesthetics Conference, 5-6 June 2019

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Baudelaire and Philosophy

An international conference supported by the British Society of Aesthetics and organised by the Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought

Goldsmiths, University of London, 5-6 June 2019 

Charles Baudelaire is a pivotal reference for debates on modernity, criticism and poetics, though in the domains of philosophy and critical theory his work is often approached solely through the prism of contemporary commentary. Taking Baudelaire’s own references to philosophy seriously, this conference will also explore the complexity of the relation between the received understanding of Baudelaire as a prophet of modernity and his opposition to any idea of progress that would reduce poetic beauty to a vehicle for social and moral development. Baudelaire and Philosophy aims to do justice to the richness, complexity and ambiguity of Baudelaire’s critical and poetic writing, to explore his relation to philosophy and the philosophical, and to interrogate his place as a synonym for a certain idea of modernity.

PROGRAMME Continue reading


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Kevin McLaughlin (Brown) — Philology of Life: Benjamin’s Literary Critical Program (10 June 2019)

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CPCT and the Walter Benjamin London Research Network cordially invite you to

Philology of Life: Walter Benjamin’s Literary Critical Program

A talk by Kevin McLaughlin (Brown)

Monday, 10 June 2019
6:00 – 8:00pm
Richard Hoggart Building 137a, Goldsmiths
** followed by a wine reception

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Gabriele Pedullà, Machiavelli for Brexiteers (May 16)

Machiavelli

‘Giving the Foreigners Citizenship’, or, Machiavelli for Brexiteers

Gabriele Pedullà

16 May

5-7

Professor Stuart Hall Building

Room LG01

A long and authoritative philosophical tradition, starting with Aristotle, asserted that cities have to be especially careful with foreigners, granting them citizenship only in exceptional cases, because the afflux of newcomers risks resulting in a threat to political concord and harmony. Against this opinion, in his Discourses on Livy Machiavelli offered a completely different reasoning: modern states should follow the model of Rome instead, where subjected populations and immigrants from abroad were constantly incorporated into the civic body, making the republic stronger, even if this process inevitably fuelled social conflicts. A lesson that is still valid today?

Gabriele Pedullà is associate professor of Italian Literature at the University of Roma Tre and has been visiting professor at Stanford, UCLA, the Ecole Normale Supérieure (Lyon), and Harvard. He is the author of In Broad Daylight: Movies and Spectators after the Cinema, Machiavelli in Tumult, and the novel Lame [Blades].