Forthcoming seminars

18–22. June 2019, Copenhagen: The Afterlife of the Object - Call for Papers

The Afterlife of the Object

European Summer School in Cultural Studies

University of Copenhagen, 18-22 June 2018

CALL FOR PAPERS

An object causes passion, as in the figurative notion of a loved object. “The Afterlife of the Object” 2018 summer school will contemplate how we establish narratives of the past and the self through objects.

Download full CfP (Word format)

Download full CfP (pdf)

We will view objects, not only loved, but also hated, ignored, collected, thrown away, performed, written, rewritten, translated, lost and found. The “object” of our study will be considered broadly, including but not limited to art, books, collections, fetishes, poems, letters, song, and beyond.

For example, in “The Daughters of the Moon,” Italo Calvino imagines the afterlife of earth’s only permanent natural satellite when she has she become too old and worn to be seen as “full.” Calvino’s story is a troubling allegory on consumerism, ecology, gender, destruction and desire, written in the ripe year of 1968.  

In Slaves and Other Objects (2004), the classicist Page duBois looks at our erasure of slaves as an idealization of the afterlife of ancient Greece, resulting in a collective blind-spot (a de-realization) that has fed and still feeds troubling views on race, including America’s nostalgia for the antebellum South.

Han Kang's 1997 short story "The Fruit of My Woman" takes the afterlife of animals as objects of food as entry into becoming plant.

Lee Edelman’s No Future: Queer Theory and the Death Drive puts a stop to mortgaging our future through the body of the child in an acceptance of the death drive through the afterlives of Hitchcock’s films.

The summer school week will feature keynote lectures (to be announced) as well as short papers presented by PhD candidates and other young scholars and a series of seminars in which we will closely examine the texts mentioned above, along with other works, including Dan Chaisson’s book of poems, entitled The Afterlife of Objects and Michael Ann Holly’s The Melancholy Art.

Deadline 8 February 2019

We welcome papers dealing with these questions from art historical, cultural, literary, cinematic, material, affective, technological, machinic, linguistic and other perspectives.

Applicants do not need to present a paper. However, those wishing to present should send a proposal of no more than 300 words and a short bio (max. 150 words) to:

afterlifeoftheobject@gmail.com by 25 January 2019. You will be informed whether your contribution has been accepted by 8 February 2019. Papers will be circulated before the conference and will have to be submitted in full (max. 4,000 words) by 1 May 2019.

PhD students are credited 3,8 ECTS if certain requirements are met. For more information, please contact the organizers.

The ESSCS is an annual network-based event offering interdisciplinary research training in the fields of art and culture. The network comprises the University of Amsterdam, Leiden University, University of Copenhagen, University of Giessen, Goldsmiths College, Université de Paris VIII, the Lisbon Consortium, Ljubljana Institute for Humanities, University of Trondheim and Catholic University Rio de Janeiro.

Organizers

Frederik Tygstrup, Rune Gade and Carol Mavor.

1-3 November 2019, Chicago: After Fiction - Call for Papers

After Fiction – CfP

Call for papers, joint PhD-Seminar, Copenhagen Doctoral School in Cultural Studies and Text, Image, Sound, Space, Norwegian Researcher School in the Humanities, in collaboration with the University of Chicago.

  • November 1-3, 2019, University of Chicago, Hyde Park Campus
  • Venues: Nov 1: The Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society
  • Nov 2-3: Cochrane Woods Art Center (Department of Art History)
  • Application deadline: Sep. 1, 2019

Download full Call for Paper


After Fiction

“That which, or something that, is imaginatively invented; feigned existence, event, or state of things; invention as opposed to fact.” This is the OED definition of fiction.In modern art studies, this understanding of the divide between the fictional and what is real is essential to a number of fundamental concepts such as representation, imagination, invention, plot, fantasy, and many more. Fiction, indeed, is a fundamental tenet in the basic understanding of what art is – whether as something superior to mere facts, or as something that is dispensed of conforming to the reign of the factual.

This understanding, however, seems to be increasingly challenged in today’s culture. In the realm of art, we are witnessing a rapid growth of works and events that overtly and provocatively use and display non-fictional forms, claims and materials. Documentaries, testimonies and re-mediations of existing visual, aural and textual matter play a predominant role in contemporary art, and the recording, arrangement and re-framing of allegedly “real” materials now often seem more important in art production than imaginative invention. Inversely, the social realms of information, politics and economy are getting still more dependent on forms and ideas that bear more resemblance to “spectacle” (in Guy Debord’s sense of the word) than to actually assignable facts on the ground. Information is becoming instrumental in strategic warfare agendas, political claims address affects of imaginary scenarios, assessment of bonds and stocks becomes relative to a finely tuned set of values, faith professions and expectations, and so on.

In this situation, as the neatly delineated “realms” of the invented and the factual become increasingly entangled and blurred, our perception of fiction also changes. When fiction loses its distinction, either everything becomes fiction, or the idea of fiction itself eventually becomes irrelevant. 

With this seminar, we will address the changing perception of fiction and the fictive from three different angles. We will assess and discuss a number of traditional understandings of fiction and their underpinnings and premises, on theoretical, methodological and analytical levels. Secondly, we will examine a number of recent cultural objects and practices, where the divide between the fictive and the real is contested, negotiated or recast. And finally, we will look at some examples of how the conceptual and institutional outline of fiction have operated in an array of historical discourses and art practices. Participants are encouraged to submit paper proposals in any field of research with relevance to the understanding of fiction and its contemporary transformations.

Taking these perspectives as a starting point, participants are invited to reflect on notions of fiction, fictionality, fact, reality and the real and how these pertain to their dissertation subjects empirically, analytically or epistemologically.


Keynote speakers:

 

 

Text, Image, Sound, Space (TBLR)

Text, Image, Sound, Space (TBLR) is a Norwegian doctoral school in the Humanities. Founded in 2004 as a consortium between University of Bergen, NTNU, University of Agder, University of Stavanger, University of Oslo, Nord University and UiT Norway’s Arctic University.

At least once a year, TBLR invites PhD-.students from the participating institutions to a one week PhD training seminar in literary and aesthetic studies with prominent international guest lecturers. TBLR also organizes shorter seminars on selected subjects relevant to a PhD study, such as “academic writing”, “supervision”, “transferable skills”, and specific methodological issues.

There is no tuition fee and TBLR covers the participants' board and lodging for the duration of the seminars (although the participants are usually requested to cover their own travel expenses).

TBLR cooperate with a number of other training schools such as Copenhagen Doctoral School in Cultural Studies (CDS), European Summer School for Cultural Studies (ESSCS). PhD students from the consortium’s partner universities may apply for participation in any course organized by these schools (relevant information will be posted on TBLR’s home page).

Presently, the Board of TBLR consists of Professor Knut Ove Eliassen (NTNU, Head of Board), Associate Professor  Janne Stigen Drangsholt (UiS), Associate Professor Margareta Dancus (UiA), Associate Professor Linda Nesby (UiT), Professor Ina Blom (UiO),  Svein Halvard Jørgensen (Nord University) and Professor Lars Sætre (UiB).


Thu, 01 Feb 2018 10:21:50 +0100

Previous seminars

2019

Paris, 9–11 January 2019:
Marx revisited: Temporalities of neo-liberalism (PhD Seminar)

  • Paris, FMSH, January 9-11, 2019
  • Application deadline: 3rd of December

The 2018 bicentenary of Karl Marx sees a renewed interest in his writings. If the beginning of the new millennium marked a low point in Marxist critical theory’s academic standing – epitomized in Bruno Latour’s highly influential 2001 essay, “Why has critique run out of steam?” –, the shock of the 2008 financial collapse and ensuing debt crises paved the way for an unexpected comeback. Given the dominant neo-liberal paradigm’s inability to provide the tools – in theory as in practice – to cope with the most pressing economic issues of the current crisis, Marx resurfaced as the central theoretical resource for a critical approach to the economic order underpinning and formatting the lived reality of 21st century capitalist society.

Keynotes

Keynote addresses will be delivered by Michel Feher (Goldsmith) and Jacob Lund (Aarhus Universitet).

Application Process

Due to the conference facilities a limited number of places are available. The number of participants will be limited to 15 (10 of which are reserved for participants from the TBLR consortium).

Those who would like to attend should fill in the application form by the 3rd of December (roughly 300 words). If the total number of applicants from TBLR exceeds 10, a selection will be made on the basis of relevance, previous participation in the TBLR program, affiliation and status of PhD training; beyond that, early applications will be prioritized.

Program

The program will consist of plenary key-note lectures (45-minute presentation, 45-minute discussion) and group work. Participant papers will be presented in a conventional conference setting (15-minute presentation, 15-minute discussion). In addition, there will be text reading sessions. Participants can choose between presenting their own work or a theoretical text for a text session.

Working language: English.

Credits: 2/5 ECTS. Participation and presentation will result in 2 ECTS, working over and submitting and editing a version of the presentation (12-15 pages) after the seminar, will yield an additional 3 ECTS. Signed and authorized course diplomas will be bestowed upon each PhD student participant on completion of the course.

Deadline for application

Monday December 3rd. Please include a title and a short abstract (300 words) or indicate if you would prefer to present an article from the reading list (to be posted separately on the TBLR home page). The selection of participants will be ready by Friday the 7th of December.


See full CfP, more information about the seminar and application procedure

Registration and reading list

For further information, please contact

Knut Ove Eliassen knut.eliassen@hf.ntnu.no or

Frederik Tygstrup frederik@hum.ku.dk

2018

New York, May 8-10 2018: Situated knowing: The economies of representing/representations

Venue: The Norwegian Church, 317 East 52nd Street

Download CfP

Situated knowing: The economies of representing/representations

Knowledge is situated. In the wake of the critical epistemologies of the 1960s – such as Jürgen Habermas’ Knowledge and Human Interests, Michel Foucault’s The Order of Things or Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions –, it became commonplace to consider that whatever is known is known by ways of representations. Moreover, that these are bound to be relative to where, when, how and who, in other words to specific epistemological economies.

Henceforth, knowing something about something inevitably comes with a caveat introducing both an attentivness and a reflexivity to the specificity of forms and protocols of knowledge and their internal and external dynamics. In order to gauge what might condition, facilitate or impose such knowledge critical attention focuses on howknowledge is known. Critical notions of class, gender and ethnicity have served to provide frameworks for such reflections, making the forms of knowledge less self-evident by mapping it onto larger economic, political and cultural maps. One of the powerful lessons of Critical Theory is the imperative to reflect not only upon the content of knowledge (what we know) or its protocols (how we know it), but also upon its affordances (what does it make possible) and politics (what does it serve).

This reflexive turn has entailed that we consider knowing less in propositional terms, as in traditional epistemology, than in the terms of systems of representations and their specific economies. To know is to partake in an economy of representations where the establishment of epistemological objects cannot be disentangled from the subjective positions they make possible, from where they can be experienced, apprehended, and problematized.

Contemporary cultural analysis has contributed widely to contextualize and historicize forms of knowledge over a broad range of topics, from medicine to law, from religion to economy, from geography to philosophy. It has also, and not less notably, thoroughly elaborated the social and epistemological frameworks underpinning the forms of knowing something about the world inherent in artistic representations produced in literature, art, performance and music. 

In this seminar, we will revisit some of the theoretical and methodological discussions about how to unpack the different aspects of the situatedness of knowledge by analytically constructing the economies of representing formatting and permeating everyday life, scientific discourses and art.

By focusing on representations, we will moreover discuss how to overcome the traditional gap between epistéméand techné, between “knowing what” and “knowing how”, as Ryle had it. We will work with situations of knowledge in both of the two, related, senses: how we can construe the contexts in which knowledge production is situated, and how we analyse the practices through which knowledge emerges from situations where representations are enacted.

Taking these concepts as a starting point, participants are invited to reflect on situations of knowledge pertaining to their dissertation subjects, and on the relationship between contextual situatedness and poetological situations in selected representations.

Following keynotes are invited:

Emily Apter (confirmed)

Devin Fore (confirmed)

Ben Kafka (confirmed)

PhD students from TBLR member universities are invited to attend and present their work. In addition, the course will be open to a limited number of students from other universities. The number of participants is limited to 20.

TBLR participants (confirmed): Knut Ove Eliassen, NTNU; and Frederik Tygstrup, Københavns universitet.

Application Process

Due to the venue and the cooperation with Copenhagen university a limited number of places are available. Those who would like to attend should fill in the application form and submit a short draft of their paper by the 19th of March latest (roughly 300 words). If the total number of applicants from TBLR and Copenhagen University exceeds 18, a selection will be made on the basis of relevance, previous participation in the TBLR program, affiliation and status of PhD training; beyond that, early applications will be prioritized.

Program

The program will consist of plenary key-note lectures (45-minute presentation, 45-minute discussion) and group work. Participant papers will be presented in a conventional conference setting (15-minute presentation, 15-minute discussion). In addition, there will be text reading sessions. Participants can choose between presenting their own work or a theoretical text for a text session.

  • Working language: English.
  • Credits: 2/5 ECTS. Participation and presentation will result in 2 ECTS, working over and submitting and editing version of the presentation (10-12 pages) after the seminar, will yield an additional 3 ECTS.
  • Signed and authorized course diplomas will be bestowed upon each PhD student participant on completion of the course.
  • Hotel: Hotel reservations will be made by the participants themselves. Up to five nights will be reimbursed (up to 200 US$ per night) for students from the institutions participating in TBLR.
  • Meals: Lunches all three days are covered by TBLR, so is the dinner of Thursday night.
  • Travel: PhD students are expected to cover their own travel expenses.
  • Texts: Reading materials will be made available to the participants by Dropbox no later than a month before the seminar. The reading list will include texts by: (yet to be specified)

Paris, 9.–12. januar 2018: Forms of life: Vitalisms, bio-politics and new ecologies

Call for papers, PhD Training course.

Download the full Call for Papers

  • Deadline for application: December 10th, 2017
  • Deadline for paper: January 5th, 2018

Over the last decades “forms of life” has gained currency as a signature term for exploring changing conceptions and perceptions of “life”. While inevitably drawing on earlier conceptual elaborations (Wittgenstein, Canguilhem, Foucault), from the vantage point of the 21st century, the concept provides a means to articulate a contemporary experience: where the blurring of the nature-culture divide is less a critical position than a characteristic trait of the infrastructure of everyday reality in the Anthropocene.

In 2016, The International Geological Congress received the recommendation to formally designate the current epoch, characterized by increasing levels of greenhouse gases, acidification of the oceans, rapid extinction of biomes, and manmade sediment production exceeding that of other sources, as “The Anthropocene”. In its July 2017 issue, Nature revealed that a team of American researchers had stored a film sequence in a bacteria’s genome using the DNA code’s inheritance units, thus realizing what Rudy Rucker over 25 years ago coined as “wetware”. Under such conditions, all cultural and political issues are necessarily framed by “the question of technology” and “forms of life” cannot but be articulations of the current political economy of living beings.

In various ways, art and artists have responded to the shifting realities and their immediate effects not merely on human life, but on life forms in general. From Eco-criticism, Eco-poetry and Eco-art, to Object-Oriented Ontology, Zoo-poetics, and laboratories for the “new we”, manifestos and charters abound. Thus, art, literature and theory not merely interpret but respond to and intervene in the current situation and its pressing concerns. What we witness are ongoing explorations and negotiations of our notions of what life and community entail, contemplating the outsides and insides of the current life forms and their respective ecologies.

We invite the participants to focus on how literary, aesthetic and cultural studies interact with and respond to the life sciences and pressing issues of ecology. What happens when the distinction between the micro-politics of the biological body and the macro-politics of the community become blurred in a general bio-political economy? What are consequences for “life” when the nature-culture distinction becomes a complex hyper-object, an aggregate where traditional distinctions have ceased to be immediately meaningful? How do we need to revise our notions of communication, when media become elemental, and elements become media? How do literature and the arts respond to anthropology that cannot be conceived independent of an increasingly subcutaneous technology?

To address these and related questions, we suggest the following: forms of life, vitalisms, bio-politics, and new ecologies, as tools to think upon the on-going re-mapping of the human and non-human, matter and mind, people and things, art and life, forms and processes.

Taking these concepts as a starting point, we invite the participants to articulate some of the specific traits of the aesthetic experience of the 21st century and identify and discuss matters of concern that mark contemporary art and literature.

PhD students from TBLR member universities are invited to attend and present their work. In addition, the course will be open to a limited number of students from other universities. The number of participants is limited to 18.

Key-note speakers:

  • Cathrine Mallabou, Kingston University, Irvine University
  • Jens Hauser, Copenhagen University

 

2017

Bergen, August 14-18 2017: Living together

TBLR and ESSCS Announcement

Barthes, with Agamben and Derrida: Under the heading ”Living Together”, the summer course is anchored in Roland Barthes' 1977 lecture series “Comment vivre ensemble? – Sur l’idiorrythmie”, held at Collège de France.

See course website for "Living together"

Download Call for papers


New York City, May 18-20, 2017: What is Old Media?

Joint PhD Seminar, Copenhagen Doctoral School in Cultural Studies and Text, Image, Sound, Space, Norwegian Researcher School in the Humanities

New York, May 18-20, 2017

See detailed description of the seminar

Registration form (in Norwegian)

For further information, please contact Knut Ove Eliassen knut.eliassen@hf.ntnu.no or Frederik Tygstrup frederik@hum.ku.dk


Logo, Fondet for dansk norsk samarbeidCopenhagen, 10 – 14 January, 2017: What is quality?

This seminar was held in Danish/Norwegian, please see our Norwegian pages for more information about the seminar "Hva er kvalitet".

2016

Academic Writing:
Dissertation form – articles or monography?
(Chapters or articles?)

TBLR National PhD-researcher training course in literary and aesthetic disciplines, Tromsø, 29th and 30th September 2016

Currently, PhD students may themselves decide whether to write a monography or a dissertation based on a series of articles. Yet what does this choice entail, what are the gains and/or disadvantages inherent in the different formats, and how can we best receive and make use of advisement comments and supervising within the two genres? And what are the chances to complete the PhD dissertation within the time frame allotted?

See more information on the course website


Figura

In cooperation with the Copenhagen Doctoral School of Cultural Studies TBLR is happy to present a joint PhD-Seminar to be held in New York City May 3-5, 2016.

In the early twentieth century, Walter Benjamin prophesized that the increasing amount of writing surrounding us in modern cities would eventually change our mode of reading, from absorption in textual worlds to a distracted recognition of surface values, like reading hieroglyphs rather than texts. Hundred years later, our immersion in signs of all sorts coming towards us on innumerable and ubiquitous surfaces raises the stakes of Benjamin’s intuition: what is the logic of our interaction with the panoply of signifying processes that are becoming still more deeply ingrained with the machineries of social reproduction today?

We have sign processes conveying information, creating meaning, producing reference and visibility, distributing value, processing commodities, and much more. Faced with this saturation, we are compelled to reconsider our understanding of what signs do, to reassess the scope of Saussure’s famous query into “the life of signs in the life of society.” Signs are expressions, emerging from a surface, and we have huge theoretical and methodological resources to gauge the ways in which they confect meaning and construct reference. We still need, however, to develop our understanding of a third modality of sign processes, namely how expressions affect us. To accommodate this need, this seminar will heuristically suggest considering signs as figura, expressions that combine aspects of meaning, reference and affect.

The seminar will be based on the following curriculum:

  • Erich Auerbach, "Figura", (Norwegian translation in Fra Verdenslitteraturens filologi, Oslo 2008)
  • Gilles Deleuze, Logique de la sensation, (English translation, Logic of sensation, London 2003)  
  • Mauricio Lazzarato, Signs and Machines, London 2014
  • D. N. Rodowick, Reading the Figural, London 2001

Invited speakers will include Claudia Brodsky (Princeton) and D.N. Rodowick (Chicago) - TBC

Please submit a 300 word abstract for a presentation, or volunteer for a text presentation, before March 31, to the organisers:

The seminar will be held at the Norwegian Church in New York.

TBLR will cover up to five hotel nights for PhD students from institutions participating in the TBLR (up to a maximum of 200 US$ per night). Also included is the lunch on the first day of the seminar and the goodbye dinner Thursday evening. There is a limited number of places available (6 for the time being); early applications will be prioritized.


 

2015

What is contemporary?

Call for papers:

Maison des sciences de l’homme, le Programme franco-norvégien en sciences sociales,

Paris, January 12th15th 2016

Download complete call and application form (Word)

Deadline for application: November 10th, 2015

Deadline for paper: January 5th, 2016

To be submitted to: Knut Ove Eliassen, HF, NTNU.


Course in Academic Writing:

25-26 September 2015 in Bergen, Norway. See course website for more information.

Application deadline: 9 August 2015.


Aesthetic Technologies

Aesthetic Technologies is a three day course that will take place 20-22 May 2015 in New York City at the Norwegian Sjømannskirken in cooperation with Copenhagen Doctoral School in Cultural Studies. The course is worth 5 ECTS for those with paper and 2 ECTS for those without. For further information, see description and program. Those who want to apply must use the form.

Deadline for applications is 16th March 2015.


 

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