Concentrationary Imaginaries/ Imaginaries of Violence
in Contemporary Cultures and Cultural Forms
Adriana Cavarero (Verona)
Paul Gilroy (LSE)
Paul Willemen (University of Ulster) (to date)
An international transdisciplinary conference organized by the AHRC Research Project Concentrationary Memories: The Politics of Representation
2007-2011 directed by Professors Griselda Pollock and Max Silverman
Date: April 13-15 2011
To be held at the University of Leeds
Profs Griselda Pollock ( Centre for Cultural Analysis, Theory and History) and Max Silverman ( Centre for French and Francophone Cultural Studies)
at the University of Leeds
Our research into the politics of representation of the concentrationary after 1945 aims to pose the questions:
Has any aspect of the ‘concentrationary universe’ (Rousset), the sociological experiment in total destruction of humanity in which ‘everything is possible’ (Arendt) seeped into and been disseminated through contemporary culture? Is there a concentrationary imaginary?
Far from being contained as a one-off, geopolitically contained event, the concentrationary and its horrific extension, the exterminationary, initiated the political novelty that Arendt defined as totalitarianism. Totalitarianism was an experiment in the destruction of the human, which Arendt came to identify with spontaneity and plurality.
In this conference we wish to investigate the often oblique manifestations of the legacies of the concentrationary in diverse forms of contemporary culture from literature, to cinema, and video games. Can aspects of the increasing obsessions with violence in media culture be related to an unacknowledged concentrationary legacy? Where is the concentrationary most visible? Is it identifiable by a lack of conscious memory that might continuously warn of its menace? In what forms has the concentrationary continued in political realizations, but also in their underlying imaginations and in imaginary forms? Where might we locate its signs? What are its effects on the subjectivities such cultural manifestations help to shape?
The following areas are merely suggestions for areas through which we suggest the question of the emergence, persistence and transmogrification of a concentrationary imaginary might be investigated as part of an eternal vigilance and cultural-political challenge to the continuing menace of that which the concentrationary universe and gulags initiated in the heart of twentieth century Europe.
Post Holocaust Political Theory
Science Fiction and the Concentrationary Empire
Contemporary Apocalyptic Art :Images of Fear
Popular Culture, Racism and Others
Dark Times: Arendt’s Legacies in Cultural Theory and Practice
Cinema and the Concentrationary Imaginary
Identifying Sites of Cruelty
Agamben and Culture
submission deadline: August 1, 2010
Please download the form at: http://www.leeds.ac.uk/cath/index.html
and send electronically to Francesco Ventrella: firstname.lastname@example.org
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