Oecumene Dialogue March 2013

Dear Oecumene friends and colleagues,

We are very pleased to send you the March edition of Oecumene Dialogues, our monthly newsletter.

Summary of items covered in this issue:

  1. Event: Posthuman Citizens, Humanized Animals, Viral Politics - public lecture by Rosi Braidotti, 23 May 2013, London
  2. Event: Edward Said Memorial Conference, 15-17 April 2013, Amsterdam
  3. Publication: 'Cut 'N' Mix King Lear: Second Generation And Asian-British Identities' by Alessandra Marino
  4. Blog: Hope and Despair by Raghda Butros
  5. Blog: What Pussy Riot Know by Rosi Braidotti

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1. Event: Posthuman Citizens, Humanized Animals, Viral Politics

Thursday, 23 May 2013, 15:00 - 17:00
The Open University in London, 1-11 Hawley Crescent, Camden Town, London NW1 8NP

Public lecture by Professor Rosi Braidotti

The lecture aims at outlining at least two different forms of contemporary posthuman subjectivity. The first is an analytic mode of posthuman thought which acknowledges the decline of classical, unitary visions of subjectivity, due to a number of factors including scientific and technological advances, but does not embrace it at the normative level. The second is a more critical posthuman thought, which on the contrary embraces the new range of normative options and alternative values engendered by the posthuman predicament. The former results in a compensatory extension of ‘human’ rights to non-anthropocentric species and actors, in keeping with the humanistic tradition. The latter argues instead for a generic ‘becoming-nomadic’, which involves transversal assemblages across species and actors and requires the creation of new ethical frames, relations and practices. The lecture ends by exploring the implication of these schemes for new insights into political subjectivity and offers examples of  affirmative posthuman ‘viral politics’.

Rosi Braidotti is Distinguished University Professor at Utrecht University and the founding Director of its Centre for Humanities.

Please RSVP to: Oecumene-project@open.ac.uk


2. Event: Edward Said Memorial Conference,15-17 April 2013, Amsterdam

The day is related to Israel-Palestinian Artists and the issue of conflict resolution within their work. The cultural component of the day consists of screenings of documentaries of Edward Said and his work in local Utrecht movie theaters.

For further information, please see the webpage for the event.


3. Publication: 'Cut 'N' Mix King Lear: Second Generation And Asian-British Identities'

This essay deals with the images and sounds of London in the BBC short series Second Generation (2003), where King Lear is appropriated to shed light on the conflicts of Indian-British subjects of different generations. The adaptation revolves around the fall of an aged patriarch with three daughters, whose life is spent between their curry factory in the East End and the South Asian local community. Using post-colonial theory and diaspora studies as critical tools, the chapter explores the identity struggles portrayed in the TV series by analysing the references to Shakespeare's play and the centrality of Nitin Sawhney’s soundtrack.

For further information please see: Book webpage at Palgrave Shakespeare Studies


4. Blog: Hope and Despair

by Raghda Butros

Ten of us on my programme at Columbia University are Jordanian. We share a common interest in social change and a belief that we can forge a better future for Jordan and the region – even if that belief is sometimes tested. Our Jordanian upbringings are varied, even though we grew up in the same country.


5. Blog: What Pussy Riot Know

by Rosi Braidotti

Globalization has contributed to the tendency to de-link the three basic units that used to compose citizenship: one’s ethnic origin or place of birth; nationality or bond to a nation state and the legal structure of rights and obligations. These three factors are disaggregated and re-arranged in new ways.


Oecumene: Citizenship after Orientalism is funded by an European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Grant (Institutions, values, beliefs and behaviour ERC-AG-SH2).

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