2013, Fri, Jan 11


Impulse: smudge studio: Elizabeth Ellsworth (School of Media Studies, New School for Public Engagement, New York) und Jamie Kruse (artist, designer, New York). Response: Dipesh Chakrabarty (Department of History, University of Chicago, New York), Akeel Bilgrami (Department of Philosophy, Columbia University, New York), Renée Green (Department of Architecture, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge), Paulo Tavares (Department of Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths, University of London). Moderation: Lorraine Daston (Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte, Berlin)

The simultaneity of human and non-human, geological and technological, planetary and galactic timescales asks for a discussion on the systems available for the assessment of transformations in time and space. Does the Anthropocenic view of humanity as a “force of nature” generate friction with nature as we know it, mandating that we control, contain and direct our (inter)actions in a way that may unsettle ecological principles of balance and equilibrium? What institutional re-imaginations are needed to envision a future of governance within the Anthropocene, where democratic processes can smoothly unfold? To what extent can reflections on spatio-temporal frictions affect concrete decision-making processes for the future, whether legal, political or environmental?

Akeel Bilgrami (New York)is the Johnsonian Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University and a founding member of its Committee on Global Thought. His collection of essays "Politics and the Moral Psychology of Identity", will be out next year. He is writing two short books called "What is a Muslim?" and "Gandhi, The Philosopher". His current longterm writing project is on practical reason and politics.

Dipesh Chakrabarty (Chicago) is professor in the Department of History and the Department of South Asian languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago. He is a founding member of the editorial collective of Subaltern Studies and a founding editor of the journal Postcolonial Studies. His current projects are on the implications of the science of climate change for historical and political thinking, democracy and political thought in South Asia, and a cultural history of Muslim-Bengali nationalism.

Renée Green (Cambridge, Ma) is an artist, filmmaker and writer. She is an associate professor and the director of ACT, the MIT Program in Art, Culture and Technology. Her work engages with investigations into circuits of relation and exchange over time, the gaps and shifts in what survives in public and private memories as well as what has been imagined and invented. She also focuses on the effects of a changing transcultural sphere on what can now be made and thought.

smudge studio (New York) is a nonprofit media arts collaboration between Jamie Kruse (artist, designer, New York) and Elizabeth Ellsworth (professor for media studies at the 58 New School, New York), co-founded in 2006. Their project meets at sites and moments where the geologic and the human converge. They creatively respond to the complex of forces they encounter there: the natural, built, historic, social, strategic and the imagined. They are co-editing a collection of essays, "Making the Geologic Now: Material Conditions of Contemporary Life" (2012).

Paulo Tavares (Quito/London) is architect and urbanist, graduated in Brazil and teaches at Goldsmiths, where he is also completing a PhD. His work is chiefly concerned with spatial politics, ecology and media. Recent projects deal with the relations between environmental violence and law in the case of the internal armed conflict in Guatemala and the colonization of the Amazon during the military dictatorship in Brazil. He also teaches in the Facultad de Arquitectura, Diseño y Artes at Pontificia Universidad Católica de Ecuador.

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