Session 4: Cracking the Contemporary
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Sat 25 Feb

10:30 - 12:00

De Brakke Grond

20 / 17,50

Philosophy and art have the power to unsettle and to reveal new openings. They can create cracks in the present, through which new things may appear — the unforeseen, a glimpse of a future to come — forcing the existent understanding of the world and ourselves out of perspective. New concepts may challenge the present crisis and ask us to think differently, for instance, by reconsidering the relations between humanity, nature and culture. What is the political potency of nature in more-than-human terms? Do we live in posthuman times? How do the new materialisms contribute to these explorations? David Roden The Noise of the Future: Against Posthuman Ethics Our posthuman predicament is real enough, but can only be formulated in empty terms. Consequently, there can be no posthuman ethics, only an aesthetics of uncontrolled, noisy futures. These will be explored through aesthetic models – including the ‘weird’ fiction of China Miéville and Jeff Vandermeer, noise music and practices of body modification. Each model will be used to give determination to the idea of a technologically transformative encounter at the edge of the human. Sarah J. Whatmore Forces of Nature? unsettling the Geopolitics of ‘Natural’ Hazards In her presentation, Sarah J. Whatmore traces some of the implications of recharging the political potency of nature in more-than-human terms. She focuses on the ontological disturbances wrought by 'natural' hazards and explores their capacity to place new demands on research and artistic practices in rendering such events affective and amenable to political interrogation. Drawing on the philosophical resources of Isabelle Stengers’ project of experimental constructivism, she argues that ‘nature’ becomes molten in the event of hazardous disturbances, heightening possibilities for remaking its heterogeneous and complex configuration with the human being. Rick Dolphijn The Cracks of the Contemporary VI: The Wound Rick Dolphijn proposes that we think about the wound and its relation to time from a posthuman, new materialist perspective. Mapping the wound, we should ask ourselves: how does the wound travel? In what way, does it realise the war trauma and the fascist State? In what way does it not only crack the relation between nature and culture but also give rise to environmental disaster?
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