Shifting Borders: Art, Politics, and Ethics Today

While art exhibitions now take place in abandoned factories or warehouses, artists increasingly take upon themselves tasks of social investigation, historical reconstruction, archival research, political discussion and activism. At the same time, political protest can less and less be sustained by social and institutional forces. It must increasingly take on the form of an artistic performance, diverting public spaces to create its own time-space and invent new montages of words, images and movements. Should we consider the increasing porosity between the two spheres and the proximity of their performances as the manifestation of an ethical confusion or as the common research for a new sense of the common and a revived understanding of politics as a conflict of worlds?

With Martin Jay, Ehrman Professor Emeritus of European History at UC Berkeley, as discussant.

Jacques Rancière is a professor of philosophy at The European Graduate School (EGS), and professor emeritus at the Université de Paris, VIII. For more information on Rancière and his career, please see his EGS bio.

Sponsored by the Rhetoric Department. Co-sponsored by the Program in Critical Theory, the International Consortium of Critical Theory Programs, the Global Urban Humanities Initiative, the Townsend Center, and the Departments of French, English, and Classics.