Catherine Soussloff, “Foucault on Painting” podcast (2018)

Soussloff’s book is very good, so this should be interesting.

Foucault News

Catherine Soussloff, “Foucault on Painting” (U Minnesota Press, 2017) podcast

In Foucault on Painting (University of Minnesota Press, 2017), Catherine Soussloff discusses an area of Foucault’s development that has remained largely overlooked: his engagement with painting.  Indeed Foucault, we learn, described himself as a painter.  Throughout his career, he examined painting and the image as he pursued critical elements of his philosophical ideas. Soussloff examines Foucault’s engagement with periods in European art history that captured his attention in particular: the Baroque, mid-nineteenth century French painting, Surrealism, and figurative painting of the 1960s and 1970s. The book also considers Foucault’s interest in five artists: Velázquez, Manet, Magritte, Rebeyrolle, and Fromanger. Soussloff’s study reveals the importance of art in Foucault’s philosophy, and affirms the relevancy of Foucault in consideration of the role of the image in the twenty first Century.

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Francesco Vitale, Biodeconstruction: Jacques Derrida and the Life Sciences reviewed at NDPR by Hans-Jörg Rheinberger

63719_cov.jpgFrancesco Vitale, Biodeconstruction: Jacques Derrida and the Life Sciences is reviewed at NDPR by Hans-Jörg Rheinberger. The book appeared earlier this year with SUNY Press, translated by Mauro Senatore.

The first chapter of the book is available to download here.

Here’s the first paragraph of the review:

Francesco Vitale has written a remarkable book. It rests on an extended analysis of the largely unpublished seminar La vie la mort that Jacques Derrida gave in the winter of 1975-76. The rumor is widespread that Derrida was more or less agnostic about the scientific developments of his time. This book tells us otherwise. Apparently, Derrida had a deep interest in the development of the life sciences, beginning with the physiological underpinnings of Freud’s fin de siècle meta-psychological writings up to mid-twentieth century molecular biology, and including the evolution of humankind. One has only to recall the importance of paleontologist André Leroi-Gourhan’s Gesture and Speech, published in two volumes in 1964-65, for establishing the outlines of Derrida’s Grammatology. And the greater part of his seminar La vie la mort is devoted to a close reading of François Jacob’s La logique du vivant. This book on the history of heredity that the 1965 Nobel Prize winner in physiology or medicine published five years later received almost unanimous praise both as a scientific and a literary event from the Parisian intelligentsia of the time, including Georges Canguilhem, himself a teacher of Derrida, and Michel Foucault.

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CFP: The Body Productive – conference about capitalism, work and the body Birkbeck, University of London, 8th December 2018

a one-day conference about capitalism, work and the body

Birkbeck, University of London // 8th December 2018 // twitter: @productivebody

How are bodies produced under capitalism?

How, in turn, does capitalism make bodies productive?

How is the body (and knowledge of the body) shaped by demands of production, consumption and exchange, and how can these logics be resisted, challenged and overcome?

These are the questions at the heart of François Guéry and Didier Deleule’s Productive Body. First published in French in 1972, The Productive Body asks how the human body and its labour have been expropriated and re-engineered through successive stages of capitalism. The Productive Body challenges us to rethink the relationships between the biological and the social; the body and the mind; power and knowledge; discipline and control. Finally, it invites us to think about the body as a site of resistance and revolutionary potential.

At this one-day, interdisciplinary conference, we invite scholars and activists to assess the contribution of The Productive Body, and to address its relevance as a theoretical tool for understanding and challenging contemporary ideologies of bodily health, efficiency and productivity.

We invite submissions from scholars, activists and artists for 20-minute papers, or 10-minute provocations on the relationships – past and present – between capitalism, work and the body. Collaborative papers are welcome, and proposals for longer workshops and panel discussions will also be considered. Please contact the organisers if you are unsure. Proposals that explore or are inspired by any of the following areas are welcome:

  • Critical responses to Guéry and Deleule – the biological, the social, and the productive
  • Materialist vs. discursive approaches to the history of the body
  • Conceptualising discipline in Marx and Foucault
  • The body as an object of discipline vs. the body as a site of dissent
  • The psychology and corporeality of activism, organising and resistance
  • Hierarchies of gender and race in the division of labour
  • (Re)productive bodies; intimate and emotional labour, sex work, body work
  • How are ideas of health and disability shaped by the demands of wage labour?
  • How do queer bodies disrupt or challenge logics of productivity? How are queer bodies in turn, commodified or appropriated by capital?
  • How do the demands of productivity complicate/interact with the body as a site of intimacy?
  • Biopolitics and neoliberalism
  • Body-machines – technology and automation; robotics, cybernetics and transhumanism; digital surveillance, ‘lifelogging’ and the ‘quantified self’
  • Counterproductive bodies: pre-capitalist, non-capitalist, and post-capitalist bodies

Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words to by 24th August 2018. Submissions are especially encouraged from graduate students, early-career researchers, and groups typically underrepresented in the academy.

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2018 London Critical Theory Summer School debate recording – with David Harvey, Esther Leslie, Jacqueline Rose and Lynne Segal

2018 London Critical Theory Summer School debate recording

The Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities’ annual London Critical Theory Summer School is taking place over two weeks from 25th June – 6th July 2018.

At the end of each week the internationally renowned critical thinkers who are teaching on the Summer School join together for a public panel discussion.

The second public debate will take place on Friday 6th July and will include the following speakers:

David Harvey, CUNY Graduate Center, NYC

Esther Leslie, Birkbeck, University of London

Jacqueline Rose, Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities

Lynne Segal, Birkbeck, University of London

Thanks to dmf for the link to this.

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Why Marx’s Capital Still Matters: An Interview with David Harvey in Jacobin

Why Marx’s Capital Still Matters: An Interview with David Harvey in Jacobin

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Organisational Space and Beyond: The Significance of Henri Lefebvre for Organisation Studies – new edited collection

9781138236400Organisational Space and Beyond: The Significance of Henri Lefebvre for Organisation Studies, edited by Karen Dale, Sytze F. Kingma, Varda Wasserman

Through the focus on organizational space, using the reception and significance of the seminal work on the subject by sociologist Henri Lefebvre, this book demonstrates why and how Lefebvre’s work can be used to inform and elaborate organisational studies, especially in view of the current interest in the “socio-material” dimension of organisations.

As the “spatial turn” in organisational research exposed the importance of spatial design in inducing power and cultural relations, Lefebvre’s perspective has become an inspiring, theoretical framework. However, Organisational Space and Beyond explores how Lefebvre’s work could be of a much wider relevance, especially given his profound theoretical engagement with diverse schools of philosophical and sociological thought, including Nietzsche, Marx, Sartre and Foucault.

This book brings together a range of authors that collectively develop a broader understanding of Lefebvre’s relevance to organizational studies, including areas of management concern such as strategy and diversity studies, and ultimately draw on Lefebvre’s work to rethink, reimagine and reshape scholarship in organisational studies. It will be of relevance to researchers, academics, students and organizational professionals in the fields of organisation studies, management studies, cultural studies, architecture and sociology.

Currently only an expensive hardback and much cheaper e-book, but with a good amount available as a preview.

I’ve added this book to my list of reading suggestions on Lefebvre.
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Interview with Dylan Trigg at Figure/Ground

Interview with Dylan Trigg at Figure/Ground Here’s the first question and answer:

How did you decide to become a university professor? Was it a conscious choice?

Like many people working in academia, accidents and errors have become more valuable than conscious choices. My introduction to philosophy came via psychotherapy, which itself came via criminal psychology. Before philosophy, I was studying existential psychoanalysis in London. This style of therapy is rooted in phenomenology, and the grand themes of death, freedom, anxiety, and meaning inspired an interest in Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer, Sartre, Heidegger, Levinas and so forth. I was introduced to this through Irvin Yalom’s textbook, “Existential Psychotherapy,” which I read as a teenager and still hold in great regard, though perhaps with some uncritical nostalgia now. Later on, works by R.D. Laing, Karl Jaspers, and Ludwig Binswanger drew me closer to the phenomenological tradition more broadly.  Because of this background, the Wittgensteinian idea of philosophy as therapy retains a relevance for me both academically and personally, as Wittgenstein would have it: “The work of the philosopher consists in assembling reminders for a particular purpose.”  So, academia for me is not a conscious choice, as such. I did not harbour childhood fantasies of becoming a professor. It was instead an expression of something that began in the context of studying psychotherapy, which I then became seduced by.


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James D. Boys, Clinton’s War on Terror: Redefining US Security Strategy, 1993-2001 – now out and Introduction

layoutJames D. Boys, Clinton’s War on Terror: Redefining US Security Strategy, 1993-2001 – now out with Lynne Rienner. The Introduction is available open access

In the aftermath of the catastrophic attacks of September 11, 2001, President Bill Clinton’s time in office was portrayed as one in which vital opportunities to confront growing threats to US security were missed. Firmly challenging this characterization, James Boys explores the long-misunderstood approach adopted by the Clinton administration as it sought to define an effective response to acts of political violence.

Boys argues that only by understanding the efforts of Clinton and his team to address international terrorism can we make sense of the reasoning behind the actions of George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and Donald Trump, all of whom inherited, continued, and expanded on Clinton-era policies and practices. Drawing on official documents and on interviews with key players, he reveals the evolution of counterterrorism strategy throughout the Clinton administration, as well as the ramifications that it has today.

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Foucault, La Sexualité – 1964 course from Clermont-Ferrand scheduled for October 2018

The publication of Foucault’s courses from the 1950s and 1960s has been planned for some time, and now his 1964 course from Clermont-Ferrand La sexualité is listed as forthcoming in October 2018. Limited details at the moment, but here are the listings on Amazon, Cultura, Decitre and Fnac. It’s coming out with Seuil in the Hautes Etudes series, but is not yet on their website. I‘d previously heard this would be paired with a 1969 course from Vincennes on a related topic, but it is now listed as followed by ‘Le discours de la sexualité’. I’ll share more details if and when I hear them, or please add any other information in comments.

Update: Thanks to Daniele Lorenzini for confirming that there are two courses in this volume – the 1964 Clermont-Ferrand one, and the 1969 course from Vincennes Le discours de la sexualité. Claude-Oliver Doran, who was involved in the Théories et institutions penales course, is the editor,

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Shakespearean Territories (forthcoming Oct 2018, University of Chicago Press) – endorsements and description

Shakespearean Territories cover - CopyThree very generous endorsements of Shakespearean Territories – from a philosopher, geographer and literary theorist. The book is forthcoming in October 2018 from University of Chicago Press and is available to preorder from usual outlets.

Shakespearean Territories is a truly groundbreaking volume that enriches our reading of Shakespeare at the same time as it illuminates our understanding of the nature and history of territory. An insightful and engrossing work, Shakespearean Territories demonstrates Elden’s unquestionable position as the most significant thinker of territory and the geographic working today—and in relation to the literary and dramatic no less than the political.”—Jeff Malpas, University of Tasmania

“A work of meticulous scholarship, Shakespearean Territories teases out and explains a wide range of geographical themes present in Shakespeare’s plays with finesse and profound interpretation. Beyond the specific insights he offers on territory and geography as refracted through Shakespeare’s plays, Elden displays the substantial value of bridging literary and historical-geographical analysis.”—Alexander Murphy, University of Oregon

Shakespearean Territories offers illuminating analyses of Shakespeare’s works that are immersed in relevant scholarship on the colonial, geophysical, and corporeal aspects of territory. This is a fascinating textual analysis that builds upon the concept of territory with Elden’s characteristic nuance and depth.”—Garrett Sullivan, Penn State University

My thanks to Jeff, Alec and Garrett for such kind words. Here’s the back cover description of the book:

Shakespeare was an astute observer of contemporary life, culture, and politics. The emerging practice of territory as a political concept and technology did not elude his attention. In Shakespearean Territories, Stuart Elden reveals just how much Shakespeare’s unique historical position and political understanding can teach us about territory. Shakespeare dramatized a world of technological advances in measuring, navigation, cartography, and surveying, and his plays open up important ways of thinking about strategy, economy, the law, and colonialism, providing critical insight into a significant juncture in history. Shakespeare’s plays explore many territorial themes: from the division of the kingdom in King Lear,to the relations among Denmark, Norway, and Poland in Hamlet,  to questions of disputed land and the politics of banishment in Richard II. Elden traces how Shakespeare developed a nuanced understanding of the complicated concept and practice of territory and, more broadly, the political-geographical relations between people, power, and place. A meticulously researched study of over a dozen classic plays, Shakespearean Territories will provide new insights for geographers, political theorists, and Shakespearean scholars alike.

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