Thursday 25 March 2010
The University of Sydney Venue Collection
Holme Bdg, Sydney 2006
Registration is essential (category Day 1 only): AUD 20,00 and subject to availability.
“History is a Nightmare from Which I Am Trying to Awake:”
How Will the Human Body Reconnect with the Body of the World?
Fredric Jameson says it is easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism, and I want to ask why that might be? Is it because the end was always already built into the subliminal mythologies by which we live and is in fact desired—as an apocalyptic rush preceding world renewal? (Note Benjamin’s Angel of History.) Might there not be, however, quite other mythic and poetic resources that we can call upon, involving new “techniques of the body” and re-constellations of the “bodily unconscious” that the crisis brings forth?
ad personam: Columbia University Professor, Michael Taussig is one of the most innovative, distinguished, and socially engaged voices in cultural anthropology. An interdisciplinary thinker and engaging writer, Taussig’s work combines aspects of ethnography, story-telling, and social theory. His publications include two Spanish-language books on the history of slavery and its aftermath, and eight English-language books on issues of slavery, hunger, commercialization of agriculture, Marxist economic theory, popular culture, folk healing, colonialisms, theories of ritual, cultural productions of terror, the state and public secrecy, museums and memory, and poor communities in Colombia. In the title essay of his most recent book, the collection Walter Benjamin’s Grave (University of Chicago Press, 2006), Taussig reflects upon his own visit to Benjamin’s gravesite in Port Bou on the French-Spanish border, relays accounts of Benjamin’s travels as he fled the Nazis, and describes the circumstances of Benjamin’s 1940 suicide. Taussig has lectured at universities, conferences, and cultural institutions around the world and has received numerous honors, including a National Endowment for the Humanities Research Fellowship and the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship. (bio: curtesy of Transforming Cultures)