On the Bias

Theory works concentrically, theory works linearly, and most of all it works obliquely.

Join InterCcECT for a seminar with very special guest Professor Alexander Galloway, sharing work in progress on philosophy, art, and angling:

This paper considers the diagonal line as a technique within thought. Inherently formal and spatial, if not also graphical, the diagonal or oblique line has played any number of important roles: from the diagonal of the unit square (which nearly destroyed Pythagoreanism and, later, played an important role in Plato’s “Meno”), to the clinamen or oblique swerve in Lucretius, to the modern intervention of Georg Cantor’s “diagonal argument” (where in 1891 he demonstrated that the real numbers are uncountable), to Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari’s postmodern “machine,” defined as a diagonal that cuts through an assemblage. What does it mean to think and act “on the bias”?

(rsvp to interccect@gmail.com to receive the paper the week before)

Alexander R. Galloway is a writer and computer programmer working on issues in philosophy, technology, and theories of mediation. Professor of Media, Culture, and Communication at New York University, he is author of several books on digital media and critical theory, including Uncomputable: Play and Politics in the Long Digital Age (Verso, 2021).

Tues 27 September


UIC University Hall 1850

601 S Morgan St, 18th floor

(Blue Line: UIC Halsted)

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hyperbole for once

InterCcECT is delighted to welcome special guest Professor Ian Balfour for a last minute seminar, “Extreme Austen, or Hyperbole.” Why does a certain rhetoric of excess in Austen tend to get overlooked? We’ll consider some reasons and examples, some easy to read, others not so much.

Join us this coming Tuesday 6 September at 3pm at UIC, in University Hall room 1850 (601 S Morgan St, 18th floor; Blue Line: UIC Halsted).

Also mark your calendars now for another event with a special guest, Professor Alex Galloway, Tuesday 27 September!

What else are your fall theory ambitions? Propose events, topics, field trips, and happenings and  Like us on social media for frequent links and commentary.

the hottest hot darcy

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abolish this place

How do we get out of this place? Why is geography the home discipline for one of the most powerful theorists of abolition? What do we build instead? Join us to discuss Ruth Wilson Gilmore’s new essay collection Abolition Geography. We’ll read the editor’s intro and chapter 1, and aspire to chapter 2.

Thursday 4 August


Moody’s Pub (Red Line: Thorndale)

Contact us for PDFs.

Also mark your calendars now for an event with special guest Alex Galloway, Tuesday 27 September!

Propose events, topics, field trips, and happenings!  Like us on social media for frequent links and commentary.

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incubating theory

Successive viral waves, unrelenting loss, and the cumulative strain of semester 5 at Pandemic University have discombobulated InterCcECT too much in recent months, but it is now time to resuscitate! The authoritarian surge warrants more fighting, and also some more thinking. Join us for a discussion of Lauren Berlant’s *America, “Fat,” The Fetus* and all things bodily, genderly, nationcraftly – and mourningly. We’ll meet Monday 13 June, 4pm, outdoors at Pilot Project (Blue Line: Western). And fire up your summer reading lists, as we’ll be making plans for many future sessions.

The Queen of America Goes to Washington City: Essays on Sex and Citizenship - Berlant, Lauren

Contact us for PDFs.

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news of the weird

For reasons of both pleasure and overwork, humanities nerds often long to upload archives directly to our brains — but does the fantasy go the other direction? When will tech host the first uploaded human mind? What are the frontiers of AI and their consequences for mental labor (of academic stripes and otherwise)? How does science fiction work out hypotheses about the human and the machine?

InterCcECT is delighted to host an in-person miniseminar with special guest Professor Gerry Canavan to probe these weird frontiers. We’ll read this short story (composed in the form of a wikipedia article), along with “Bioethics and Transhumanism,” a recent article by Allen Porter.

Join us Tuesday 9 November, 4pm, at UIC, University Hall Room 2028 (20th floor, 601 S Morgan St; Blue Line: UIC Halsted).

Contact us for PDFs.

As always, InterCcECT welcomes proposals for workshops, reading groups, field trips, and more.

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Chicago Avant-Garde

InterCcECT field trip!

A new exhibition from the Newberry Library, curated by Dr. Liesl Olson, spotlights Chicago as a site of historic, boundary-pushing experimentation in art, literature, and dance.  Chicago Avant Garde centers five women whose lives and careers embodied a uniquely Chicago style of avant-garde creativity in the 1930s, 40s, and 50s: artist Gertrude Abercrombie, poet Gwendolyn Brooks, dancers  Katherine Dunham and Ruth Page, and curator Katharine Kuh.

Open to the public and free,  Tuesday – Saturday, 10 am – 4 pm, now through December 30th.

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalog designed by graphic artists Nick Butcher and Nadine Nakanishi of Sonnenzimmer and letterpress printer Ben Blount. It includes more than 100 photographs, an essay by Dr. Olson (Director of Chicago Studies at the Newberry ), and new poems dedicated to each of the five avant-gardists by Chicago-based poet and educator Eve L. Ewing.

Two special events also feature the exhibit:

Wednesday, October 13, 6 – 7:15 pm

Designing the Chicago Avant-Garde Identity

Saturday, October 23, 11 am – noon

A Woman Ahead of Her Time: Katherine Dunham and Afro-Caribbean Dance

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Modernity’s Original Sin

How can theology enrich the historicization of race and racialization? Find out at a special session with Professor Adam Kotsko! We’ll read the chapter “Modernity’s Original Sin: Toward a Theological Genealogy of Race” from his new collection What is Theology? Christian Thought and Contemporary Life, out now from Fordham University Press. Contact us for PDFs.

Join us Tuesday 28 September, 4pm, at Sheffield’s Beer and Wine Garden (outdoors; CTA Belmont on Red, Brown, Purple lines).

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a decade of experimental critical theory

This June marks a special anniversary for the Inter Chicago Circle for Experimental Critical Theory: ten years of conversations and conviviality, readings, lectures, field trips, workshops, and experiments. One decade of cross-city wild thought, of crowds and parties, of cinema, television, hysteria, and so many dialectics. Our deepest gratitude to the many many theorists of many many persuasions who’ve linked the circle together!

In celebration, including in cyclical return to the politics of literature, join us for an extra festive experiment in speculative fiction: for next time we’re reading Dr. Kim Stanley Robinson’s Ministry of the Future, a big novel of big ideas and big states.

Decadent Decadeversary Salon

29 June


RSVP for more deets; we’ll continue outdoor venue-ing.

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Wild Thought

It seems the circumstances might allow us to reconvene in person! And what better way to honor haptic social idea-making than readings in wild thought, reason unbound, conceptuality on the move? University of Chicago press just put out a new translation of Claude Levi-Strauss’s La Pensée Sauvage, the magisterial study of intellection outside disciplines and beyond the west-east divide. We’ll read the first chapter, “The Science of the Concrete,” see if anybody remembers how to do a reading group, and air desires for collective summer endeavors with this or other works.

Join us for Wild Thought Thursday 27 May, 4pm. Since venues are operating with constraints about groups, we’ll meet at our Bucktown salon, outdoors among the wildflowers. Contact us for the reading and address.

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at last the end of art

We continue with Rose for next time. Chapter 4 “The Division of Labor and Illusion,” meeting Weds 30 Dec, 4pm CST.

Contact us for PDFs and meeting link. Wishing everyone well.

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