Critical Theory’s 2016-2017 Season

Now in its eighth year, Critical Theory’s program of public lectures and events brings scholars from the United States and abroad to Berkeley to present new writing and scholarship. This season features lectures on Walter Benjamin’s idiosyncratic conception of “revolution,” the emergence of “whistleblowers” as a new political subject, and the politics of memory in a time of neoliberalism, among other topics. This fall’s Critical Vitalisms Working Group, organized by Patrick Lyons and Matthew Evans, explores genealogies of the concept of life and how a critical rethinking of ‘life’ may inform our contemporary politics, science, philosophy, and possibilities of interdisciplinarity.

Presented with the support of UC Berkeley’s Division of Arts and Humanities and the Division of Social Sciences.

All events take place at UC Berkeley and are free and open to the public. For more information about upcoming events, please join our mailing list.

Wednesday, September 14, 5-7 pm
Presentism: The Politics of Memory in the Age of Neoliberalism
Enzo Traverso, Susan and Berton Winokur Professor in the Humanities, Cornell University
Geballe Room, 220 Stephens Hall, UC Berkeley

Thursday, September 15, 2-4 pm
Rethinking Left-Wing Melancholia: Between Marx and Benjamin
Enzo Traverso, Susan and Berton Winokur Professor in the Humanities, Cornell University
820 Barrows Hall, UC Berkeley

Monday, September 26, 5-7 pm
The Prism of Expectation: Critical Theory’s Afterlife in America
Robert Zwarg, Research Associate, Simon Dubnow Institute for Jewish History and Culture, Universität Leipzig
3401 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Wednesday, September 28, 5-7 pm
Francophone and Postcolonial Studies in France Today
Dominique Combe, Director of the International Relations Office, Professor in Literary Theory, École Normale Supérieure, France
3335 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Friday, September 30, 12-2 pm
Critical Vitalisms Working Group | Critical Vitalism
Frédéric Worms, Professor of Contemporary Philosophy, École Normale Supérieure, France
3335 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Friday – Saturday October 7 – 8
Beyond the Dialectical Imagination: A Conference in Honor of Martin Jay
Full schedule on event page
3335 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Friday, October 14, 1-3 pm
Neutrinos and the Search for Dark Justice
Ashon Crawley, Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies, UC Riverside
470 Stephens Hall, UC Berkeley

Wednesday, October 26, 12-2 pm
Critical Vitalisms Working Group | Emergence and Milieu
Suzanne Guerlac, Professor of French, UC Berkeley
Terrence Deacon, Professor of Anthropology, UC Berkeley
3335 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Thursday, October 27, 5-7 pm
Democracy in History: Snowden, Assange, Manning
Geoffroy de Lagasnerie, Professor of Philosophy, École Nationale Supérieure d’Arts de Paris-Cergy, France
3335 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Wednesday, November 2, 5-7 pm
What is Walter Benjamin’s Idea of Revolution?
Alison Ross, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Monash University
3335 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Monday, November 21, 5-7 pm
Critical Vitalisms Working Group | Patterns of Life in the Long War
Keith Feldman, Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies, UC Berkeley
3401 Dwinelle Hall, UC Berkeley

Tuesday, January 24, 5-7 pm
Towards a Romantic Anthropology: River Life and Climate Change in Bangladesh
Naveeda Khan, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Johns Hopkins University
470 Stephens Hall, UC Berkeley

Wednesday, February 22, 5-7 pm
Cleverness and Drive, or the Cybernetic Fantasy of Value: R.S. Hunt’s “Two Kinds of Work”
Seb Franklin, Lecturer in Contemporary Literature, King’s College London
470 Stephens Hall, UC Berkeley

Thursday, April 13, 5-7 pm
A Critical Theory of Justice
Rainer Forst, Professor of Political Theory, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt
Geballe Room, 220 Stephens Hall, UC Berkeley

Spring 2017
Critical Theory in Times of Crisis Working Group (formerly the Aesthetics in Emergence Working Group)
More information to be announced at criticaltheory.berkeley.edu