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too real abstraction

Alfred Sohn-Rethel’s Intellectual and Manual Labour, and its central concept of “real abstraction,” implicitly recognized something that has become undeniable today: that environmental crisis is a crisis of thought. As atmospheric carbon increases our basic brain functioning decreases. But in another sense it may have always been a crisis of thought. What if the value form, with its quite literally world-destroying demand for accumulation, has produced for us our mode of abstract thinking? This might include, as Jason Moore as recently suggested, generating the abstract ideas of “Nature” and “Society.”

Join us Monday 29 July, 4pm, to ponder these and other abstractions, with selected readings from Sohn-Rethel, Moore, and Alberto Toscano (and optional David Cunningham).  Red Lion Pub (2446 N Lincoln; Red, Brown, Purple Lines: Fullerton). Contact us for pdfs.

As always, contact us to propose events!

On our calendar:

V21 Collective summer reading groups: THE STATE 22 July
“Political Sentences” InterCcECT miniseminar with special guest Jan Mieszkowski 7 August

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the origin of art at the end of the world

van gogh, shoesHeidegger’s essay “The Origin of the Work of Art” is a one-stop guide to everything most promising and most problematic in his thought — from the linguistic construction of meaning to the relationship of human and animal, from the most abstract reflections on the disclosure of Being to a troubling fascination with national identity — all compressed into a simple pair of peasant shoes! Earth and world, world and work, form and shoe – can these relations remain the same after mechanical reproducibility, after the world market, after extinction?

Join us Thursday 27 June, 4pm, at The Map Room.
Readings available upon request to intercept at gmail.

As always, we welcome event proposals and summer accommodates many sessions. Follow us on Facebook for frequent links and commentary.

On our calendar:
June 19: V21 Collective reading group “Equality”
June 21: Marxist Literary Group
July 22: V21 Collective reading group “The State”
July 29: InterCcECT reading session “Real Abstraction”
Aug 7: InterCcECT miniseminar “Political Sentences” with special guest Jan Mieszkowski
Aug 26: V21 Collective reading group “The Planet”

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What was the sublime? Miniseminar with Ian Balfour

Is the sublime so five minutes ago? So two centuries ago? This mini-seminar explores the extraordinarily discontinuous history of the category of the sublime and loaded examples of it proffered by theorists and critics, as well as how the sublime lines up, easily or not, with its aesthetic “others.” The point of departure will be Hegel’s short account of the sublime, considered in conjunction with passages from Adorno, Benjamin, Rancière, Negri, Newman, and Ngai.

Join InterCcECT for “Their Aesthetic Category: What was the Sublime?” led by ultra special guest Ian Balfour. Contact us for the readings.

Monday 18 March
4pm
UIC Institute for the Humanities
Stevenson Hall (lower level)
701 S Morgan St

Blue Line: UIC/Halsted

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the theory of desire in the era of id

When the unconscious is engaged in “work,” a favorite of Freud’s conceits, what is it producing? What sort of value is the value that is enjoyment? Who might articulate a labor theory of the unconscious, and what would it offer the analysis of regulated desire, social cohesion, and ideology under capitalism run amok?
every-morning-i-wake-up-on-the-wrong-side-of-capitalism_1_
Join InterCcECT for a discussion of Samo Tomsic’s The Capitalist Unconscious: Marx and Lacan Tuesday February 21st, 5pm, at The Newberry Library (red line:Chicago).

Drop at line to interccect at gmail dot com to request the readings.

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Encyclopedia Brown: a summer of Hegel kicks off 6 May

Encyclopedia-1InterCcECT will host a series of reading groups this summer, and the first focuses on the beginning of Hegel’s Encyclopedia Logic (Prefaces and Sections 1-18). Join us Friday, 6 May, 2:30pm at the south loop’s Little Branch Cafe, 1251 S Prairie Ave (Roosevelt “L”). Drop a note to interccect at gmail if you need the readings (we are using the Hackett Classics Edition/ Translation). As always, contact us to propose events, and follow us on Facebook for frequent links.

also on our books:
4 May, Fred Moten

11-13 May, Modernities: Old Problems, New Approaches

23 May What is Critical Theory?

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livable communes

barricade-paris-1871“There are moments when a articular event or struggle enters vividly into the figurability of the present, and this seems to me to be the case with the Paris Commune today.”  Thus opens Communal Luxury: The Political Imaginary of the Paris Commune, Kristin Ross’s manifesto for new futures of the past.  What does the 19th century hold for us today?  What do the practices of livability in the commune commend to our unlivable world?

Join InterCcECT for a reading group session Tuesday 11 August, 3-5pm, at, fittingly The Bourgeois Pig (Red line: Fullerton).    We’ll plan to read the entire (shortish) book.

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Presentism, Form, and the Future of History

The V21 Collective announces its inaugural symposium, “Presentism, Form, and the Future of History,” October 9-10 at the University of Chicago.  6a00d8341c562c53ef01bb07d43410970d Designed as a series of roundtables on contemporary literary study, the symposium is free and welcomes public participation.

InterCcECT particularly highlights the pre-symposium reading group this summer and fall, with sessions on queer temporality and queering historicism; form and formalism; and description and post-critique.

Join us for the first reading group session, 21 July, 3-5pm, at the DePaul University Library, room 300.  Readings include a GLQ roundtable on queer time, excerpts from Elizabeth Freeman’s Time Binds, and from Walter Pater’s The Renaissance.  Contact interccect at gmail.com or v21collective at gmail.com to receive PDFs.

And mark your calendars for the symposium:

PRESENTISM, FORM, AND THE FUTURE OF HISTORY
a series of collaborative, experimental roundtables featuring affiliates of the V21 collective
October 9th and 10th, 2015
University of Chicago

Friday, October 9
9:00am: Opening Remarks: Benjamin Morgan

9:15-11am: Bleak House Today
On how the form of Dickens’s novel resonates through time
Alex Woloch (roundtable anchor)
Elaine Auyoung
Elisha Cohn
David Coombs
Jonathan Farina
Emily Steinlight
Megan Ward

11:15-12:45: Theorizing the Present
On the continuing significance of Nietzsche’s critique of nineteenth-century historicisms, “On the Use and Abuse of History for Life”
Pearl Brilmyer (discussion facilitator)
Danielle Coriale
Eleanor Courtemanche
Devin Griffiths
Matthew Sussmann
Danny Wright

2pm-4pm: The Way We Write Now
On questions of method and interpretation in the current work of V21 affiliates
Caroline Levine (roundtable anchor)
Carolyn Betensky
Ellis Hanson
Anna Kornbluh
David Kurnick
Jesse Rosenthal
Jesse Oak Taylor

4:30-6:30 Empire and Unfielding
On the disciplinary relationship between Victorian Studies and studies of empire, grounded in Antoinette Burton and Isabel Hofmeyr’s Ten Books That Shaped the British Empire: Creating an Imperial Common
Antoinette Burton and Isabel Hofmeyr (roundtable anchors)
Tanya Agathocleous
Nathan Hensley
Jos Lavery
Sebastian Lecourt
Nasser Mufti
Mary Mullen

7:00-10:00
Affiliates Dinner
Evening Salon, Maeve Adams, facilitator

Saturday, October 10
9:30-11: Plenary, Bruce Robbins
Introduction, Molly Clark Hillard
Response, Zach Samalin

11:30-12:30: Symposium wrap-up, moderated by Elaine Hadley

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This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. To register, email V21collective at gmail dot com.

Made possible by the generous support of the Franke Institute for the Humanities, the Department of English Language and Literature, the Nicholson Center for British Studies, and the Center for International Studies, and University of Illinois at Chicago Institute for the Humanities and Department of English.

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