The agony of the rat or the slaughter of a calf remains present in thought not through pity but as the zone of exchange between man and animal in which something of one passes into the other. - Deleuze and Guattari, What Is Philosophy?
The 20th Annual Philosophy, Interpretation and Culture (PIC) Conference
April 16-17, 2010
Binghamton University – Binghamton, NY
Life has increasingly become the focus of power and the site of resistance. On the one hand there has been an increasing ‘scientific’ examination and management of populations, with a constant manipulation of the lives of populations in the name of improvement and protection. Meanwhile, economic chaos, ecological destruction, transnational labor exploitation, international and domestic militarization, increasing criminalization, and globalization have contributed to turning entire populations into población chatarra,disposable peoples. On the other hand, life has become the basis of resistance against power and the possibility for other worlds in the present and future. We can see this in the various and often contradictory concepts like Catherine Walsh’s life-ing, Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari’s materialist vitalism, the positive biopolitics of Antonio Negri or Roberto Esposito, and Enrique Dussel’s community of life. We welcome papers that seek to attend to the question of life itself, in its various powers, possibilities, and politics.
Life itself should be heard in its multivalent resonances: As a collective term, as an individual term, and as a molecular or genetic term. Furthermore life can be heard outside the anthropocentric register, referring to the affirmation of life in the face of ecological destruction and multiple oppressions; biopower and biopolitics; vitalisms; machines and cyborgs; bio-capital and the surplus value of life; and alternatives to ‘life’ emerging out of anti and non-Western cosmologies. This conference seeks to promote debates over and deepen alliances among thinkers concerned with methodologies of resistance, the examination politics and philosophy after (traditional) humanism(s), and the engagement of counter-hegemonic dialogues.
In keeping with the interdisciplinary emphasis of Binghamton University's Program in Philosophy, Interpretation and Culture, we seek work that flourishes in the conjunction of multiple frames of epistemological inquiry, from fields including, but not limited to: postcolonial studies, decolonial studies, queer and gender studies, ethnic studies, critical animal studies, media and visual culture studies, urban studies, science and technology studies, critical theory, continental philosophy, and historiography. Workers/writers/artists of all different disciplinary, inter-disciplinary, and non-disciplinary stripes welcome, whether academically affiliated or not. Submissions may be textual, performative, visual.
Submission deadline: February 15, 2010.
Please submit a 250-500 word abstract along with a cover letter that includes your name, academic affiliation, contact numbers, complete mailing address, and e-mail address, as well as information regarding any technological equipment you may need for your presentation. Papers will be considered for a 20 minute presentation, followed by discussion, so please limit the length of paper to 10-12 pages.