Politics Beyond the Human / Climate Change and the Cumulus of History: Spare Thoughts on Accumulation and Redundancy

Epsen Rasmussen

Readings:

Dipesh Chakrabarty, “The Climate of History: Four Theses”

Barbara Adam, “History of the Future: Paradoxes and Challenges”

Mary Jacobus, “Cloud Studies: The Visible Invisible”

An excerpt from Slavoj Zizek, Living in the End Times

Anne-Lise François joined the Departments of English and Comparative Literature at the University of California at Berkeley as an assistant professor in 1999, after receiving her doctorate in Comparative Literature from Princeton University. François works in the modern period, comparative romanticisms; lyric poetry; the psychological novel and novel of manners; gender and critical theory; literature and philosophy; and ecocriticism. Her current teaching focuses on the convergence of literary and environmental studies. Her book – Open Secrets: The Literature of Uncounted Experience (Stanford University Press, 2008) – was awarded the 2010 René Wellek Prize by the American Comparative Literature Association. Currently she is at work on “Provident Improvisers: Parables of Subsistence from Wordsworth to Benjamin,” which focuses on figures of pastoral worldliness, provisionality, and commonness (with “common” understood in the double sense of the political antithesis to enclosure and of the ordinary, vernacular, or profane).

In the series following-up from last Fall’s Forms of Survival and the Politics of Vulnerability, Politics Beyond the Human continues to address notions of survival and how survival can act as a license to force and at other times a basis for resistance, while expanding the scope of inquiry to include discussions of the nonhuman world. The workshop is developed and led by Michelle Ty (PhD candidate English, Designated Emphasis Critical Theory).