Mini-symposium ‘Becoming with Alien Encounters and Speculative Storytelling’: Part 2

Nina Lykke Cliffs of Fur built of algae (2017)Image: Nina Lykke, Cliffs of Fur built of algae (2017)

As the Mini-Symposium Becoming with Alien Encounters and Speculative Storytelling approaches, we continue the presentation of our speakers (see also: Part 1).

Today it is our great pleasure to introduce you to our second speaker, Prof. Nina Lykke!

 

Bio

Nina Lykke, Professor Emerita, Gender Studies, Linköping University, Sweden. Co-founder of Network for Queer Death Studies, and Network for Ecocritical and Decolonial Research. Her current research focuses on queering of cancer, death, and mourning in queerfeminist materialist, decolonial and eco-critical perspectives, and on autophenomenographic and poetic writing. Recent publications: Queer Widowhood. Lambda Nordica. 2015:4; Academic Feminisms: Between Disidentification, Messy Everyday Utopianism, and Cruel Optimism. Feminist Encounters. 2017:1(1); When death cuts apart: On affective difference, compassionate companionship and lesbian widowhood. T.Juvonen and M.Kohlemainen (eds): Affective Inequalities in Intimate Relationships. Routledge, New York, London (2018).

Paper abstract

Becoming with algae. Exploring Speculative Stories of Reimagining the Imperceptible.

Diatomite earth is fossilized remains of diatoms, single-celled aquatic algae. In the paper, I use diatoms as lens to ask, what diatomite earth may tell about a flat life/death ontology, and which possibilities for speculative story-telling it may open. My focus is a diatomite cliff formation on the Danish island of Fur – and my life partner’s ashes, spread in the waters beneath. I reflect on my co-becoming with my partner through a combination of poetic, autophenomenographic, and philosophic-cultural reflections on her becoming imperceptible in a Deleuzean sense, and her transforming into a body of ashes, now mixed with diatomite sand. The paper’s analysis is based on examples from these writings.

 

The symposium takes place on 5th April 2018, 13:15 – 16:30 at Linköping University (room: Faros; Tema building; Campus Valla).

Mini-symposium ‘Becoming with Alien Encounters and Speculative Storytelling’: Part 1

C-A-R-E-T-O-D-A-N-C-E0_Aglert

Image: Still from ‘Dial: C-A-R-E-T-O-D-A-N-C-E  (the first encounter) II’, by Katja Aglert (2017). 

 

Dear all,

As there is only nine days left till the Symposium “Becoming with Alien Encounters and Speculative Storytelling”, co-organised by The Posthumanities Hub and TEMA GENUS Higher Seminar Series at Linköping University, we’ve decided to provide you with a bit of sneak peek into what you’ll be able to fully enjoy on 5th April 2018 at Tema Genus!

More specifically, every second day (counting from today) we’ll give you a little insight into what our speakers are going to talk about. Or, in other words, every second day you’ll be able to learn a bit more about each presenter and their paper! Stay tuned! 

And of course, we start the presentation series with our very special guest, artist Katja Aglert!

Bio

Katja Aglert is an independent artist and researcher who’s practice is transdisciplinary in nature, and includes both individual and collaborative projects. She exhibited widely in Sweden and internationally including solo exhibitions at Polarmuseet, Tromsø, Norway (2017/2018); Biologiska Museet, Stockholm (2016); FLORA ars+natura, Bogota, Colombia (2015/2016) Museum for Contemporary Art, Santiago, Chile (2015/2016); Marabouparken, Stockholm (2014). As artist she teaches regularly at institutions such as Stockholm University, and Konstfack University of Arts, Crafts, and Design. For more info: katjaaglert.com

 

Paper abstract

< > ‘Dial: C-A-R-E-T-O-D-A-N-C-E  (the first encounter)’ > <

This presentation unfolds some of the research related to the artistic project ’Dial: C-A-R-E-T-O-D-A-N-C-E  (the first encounter)’. It discusses how speculative forms of storytelling developed through artistic experiments in practice, can become means for new materialisations and worldings beyond the binary views. The project explores possibilities of inter-species communication with alien aquatic beings through sound frequencies in marine environments. Exchange between diverse beings has a rich spectrum and is, amongst other things, related to the preference of speed. In other words, we cannot greet a crab on the same frequency as a clam. Furthermore, will someone reply, and how?

 

Mini-symposium “Becoming with Alien Encounters and Speculative Storytelling”

The Posthumanities Hub in collaboration with Tema Genus Higher Seminar Series  and The Eco- and Bioart Research Network have a pleasure to present:

Mini-symposium

Becoming with Alien Encounters and Speculative Storytelling

5th April 2018

13:15 – 16:30

Linköping University

Room: Faros, Tema building (Campus Valla)

20170311_161249 (2)

Speculative fiction – as an ‘umbrella term’ – refers to a wide range of narrative fiction that employs ‘fantastic’, supernatural or non-mimetic elements. In the times of the climate change and environmental crises accompanied by futuristic ‘technology-will-save-us’ scenarios on the one hand, and visions of ‘doom and gloom’, on the other, speculative fiction has gained a momentum as an alternative way to reimagine the future in the ‘Anthropocene’.

As feminist scholar Donna Haraway writes, the ‘speculative’ element of story-telling leads to ‘opening up what is yet-to-come in protean entangled times’ pasts, presents, and futures.’ (2011).

Taking this as our starting point, we see speculative narratives that combine reality and fiction, and philosophy, science and art, as a prolific site for the emergence of different ontological, epistemological and ethico-political possibilities. Through the stories of experimental encounters with alien species, in/organic entities, non/living assemblages and the void, we explore ethico-onto-epistemologies of becoming in a more-than-human world.

 

Speakers:

Katja Aglert (independent artist, Stockholm, SE)

Nina Lykke (professor em., Linköping University, SE)

Line Henriksen (lecturer, University of Copenhagen, DK)

Marietta Radomska (postdoc, Linköping University, SE)

 

See also: ALIEN ENCOUNTERS programme

Prof. Rosi Braidotti’s 2018 Summer School at Utrecht University (The Netherlands)

The day-to-day draft programme for Prof. Rosi Braidotti’s 2018 summer school at Utrecht University (the Netherlands) is now available online!

 The 2018 summer school, titled “Posthuman Ethics, Pain and Endurance,” which will take place between the 20th-24th of August 2018 at Utrecht University, in Utrecht, the Netherlands, combines an introduction to the basic tenets of  Braidotti’s brand of critical posthuman theory with an overview on contemporary debates about the ethical implications of posthumanism and the so-called ‘posthuman turn’. See the day-to-day programme summer school UU

The intensive course “Posthuman Ethics, Pain and Endurance” offers an overview of the contemporary debates about the ethical implications of posthumanism and the so-called ‘posthuman turn’ as well as Rosi Braidotti’s brand of critical feminist posthuman theory. The focus of the course this year will be on the relationship between the posthuman and the neo-materialist, vital ethics of affirmation, with special emphasis on how they deal with the complex issues around the lived experiences of pain, resistance, suffering and dying. Deleuze famously describes ethics as the aspiration to live an anti-fascist life. What does this mean for posthuman subjects situated between the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the Sixth Extinction? In the brutal context of the Anthropocene and climate change, of rising populism, growing poverty and inequality, how does posthuman ethics help us to deal affirmatively with these challenges?

These issues will be outlined, explored and assessed by addressing the following questions: How does a vision of the posthuman subject as a transversal an affirmative process of interaction between human, non-human and inhuman forces, help us cope with the complex and often painful challenges of the contemporary world? How does it affect the feminist quest for social justice, as well as environmental sustainability? How does it intersect with indigenous epistemologies and anti-racist politics? How does the neo-Spinozist notion of endurance foster the project of constructing an affirmative ethics for posthuman subjects? How does the idea of endurance connect to the philosophical tradition of neo-stoicism, and to Foucault’s re-reading of it? How does a posthuman ethics of affirmation help us practically to confront the lived reality of pain, death and dying?

Please click on the following registration link if you are interested in participating: https://www.utrechtsummerschool.nl/courses/culture/posthuman_ethics_pain_and_endurance       

Or send an e-mail to receive more information to: gw.braidottiass@uu.nl

COMPULSORY READING:

The basic textbook for the course is The Posthuman Glossary    (Bloomsbury Academic 2018), edited by Rosi Braidotti and Maria Hlavajova, which all participants are expected to buy.

 

BACKGROUND READING:

Please note that all participants are expected to have read Rosi Braidotti’s book The Posthuman (Polity Press 2013), and for an introduction to brutalism, the special issue of e-flux, co-edited by Rosi Braidotti, Timotheus Vermeulen et alia, which can be found here: http://www.e-flux.com/journal/83/

 *Please note that the course fees (excluding housing) are 300.00 euros. You can receive 2.0 ECTS for active participation during this summer school.

 

We too talk about #metoo

Welcome to the We too talk about #metoo panel talk event at Linköping University!

metoo event 28th Feb LiU

Welcome to the “We too talk about #metoo” panel talk event on #akademieuppropet and gender in the academia that takes place on 28th February 2018 at Linköping University.
The discussion will take place in both Swedish and English.
Hope to see you there!

What’s Up at the Hub?

2001-09-14 20.48.22
Here we  share with you news and updates on new jobs, visiting scholars at the Posthumanities Hub, various events, seminars, and workshops that are organized by the Hub or its mothership, Tema Genus (the Gender Studies at the interdisciplinary department of TEMA, at Linköping University, Sweden).

News

  • Our warmest congratulations on their great success to the amazing Marietta Radomska and Lisa Linden, both of TEMA LIU, who received VR grants! Marietta will be working on her project entitled ”Dödens ekologier: miljön, kroppen och etik i samtida konst” and Lisa on “Empowerment och stigmatisering: Patientorganisationer, gynekologisk cancer och identiteter i omvandling.”
  • Congratulations to “hubbers” Desirée Ljuncrantz (Tema G, Liu) and Marianna Szczygielska (Central European University, visiting PhD student at Tema G in 2015/16) who successfully defended their PhD theses!
  • A special issue of Angelaki on “Tranimacies: intimate relations between animals and trans*studies” edited by our fantastic colleagues Marianna Szczygielska, Eliza Steinbock, and Anthony Wagner is now out! With contributors from our hubbers, Marietta Radomska and Vera Weetzel, and our Tema Genus Professor Madina Tlostanova, among others, this issue is pushing the boundaries of thinking beyond the human/animal binary.
  • Congratulations to Christine Daigle from Brock University and to her team for receiving a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) partnership development grant to support Posthumanism Research Network. We’re happy and proud to be Posthumanities Research Network partner and collaborator and we’re thrilled about these new opportunities to work together.
  • Have a look at this, it’s from our friends in international posthuman studies: The 9th Beyond Humanism Conference https://vimeo.com/228020059
  • We recommend you look up Royal Holloway Centre for the GeoHumanities‘ website for more information on interdisciplinary relations between geography and arts and humanities scholarship and practice; blog, forum, call for papers, and more!

Call for papers

  • We are pleased to announce that a call for abstracts intended for a special issue of an environmental humanities journal on a theme of “Plantarium. Human-Vegetal Ecologies” is now open. For this special issue, edited by Olga Cielemecka and Marianna Szczygielska, we invite contributions that look into human-botanical ecologies, relationalities, and histories.  We seek both traditionally academic submissions, as well as visual materials, provocations, review essays, activist reports and commentary pieces, and other varying genres. Please submit abstracts (500 words) to plantarium2017[at]gmail.com as word documents (.doc or .docx) until September 29, 2017. Call available here.

Upcoming Conferences, Workshops, and Other Events

  • Curated talks around Automata, a thought-provoking performance on stage at Orionteatern in Stockholm are now available online here. A a recording of a discussion “Free-spirited cyborgs and controlled bodies” is also available online. Chaired by Carl Åkerlund this panel discussion between Samira Ariadad, Helena Granström, Waldemar Ingdahl and the founder and director of Posthumanities Hub, Cecilia Åsberg, took place on May 6th in Orion Theatre following a staging of Automata.

Recent Past Events

  • A two-day workshop Eco/Decolonial Arts: Open-ended Poetic/Philosophical Forays whose aim was to develop transversal dialogues between various ways of engagement with both ecocritical/ecological and decolonial perspectives took place at Tema G on June 28 and 29.
  • A Seed Box funded workshop “Plantarium: Re-Imagining Green Futurities” organised by Olga Cielemecka and Marianna Szczygielska took place in June, 1st-2nd, at Linkoping University. It brought together activists, artists, practicioners, independent researchers, and academics to rethink the generative potentialities of the botanical. More about the event. Many thanks to our invited keynote speakers Cate Sandilands and Michael Marder, Mirko Nikolic for a plant yoga session and Christina Sadlbauerand Regula Heggli for vegetal speed dating, and all participants for making it such a special event! Now we’re planning to work on a CfP for a special issue, intended for one of the top environmental humanities journals, on the theme of hum-vegetal ecologies. Stay tuned!
  • Professor Cecilia Åsberg, director and founder of the Posthumanities Hub, gave a keynote lecture at the 8th Annual Conference on the New Materialisms “Environmental Humanities and New Materialisms: The Ethics of Decolonizing Nature and Culture.” The conference took place at Maison de l’UNESCO in Paris on June 7-9, 2017. Professor Åsberg gave a lecture entitled “A Thousand Tiny Anthropocenes” on ecological humanities, mapping out their challenges and potentials as feminist posthumanities.

For archives of our news and events earlier in 2017, click here.

Iceberg
Iceberg 1999 by M A Felton

Feminist posthumanities is for everybody!

Human nature is not the oxymoron we imagined it to be. In this new planetary age of the Anthropocene, defined by human-induced climatic, biological, and even geological transformations, we humans are fully in nature. And nature is fully in us. This was, of course, always the case, but it is more conspicuously so now than ever before: people are entangled in co-constitutive relationships with nature and the environment, with other animals and organisms, with medicine and technology, with science and epistemic politics. We live and die, play, thrive, and suffer by each other. For example, think of “mad cow” disease, where humans feeding cows with by-products from slaughtered sheep infected with the prionic disorder “scrapie” in turn generates prion disorders in cows that get transmitted to human beef consumers through a series of transcorporeal (Alaimo 2010) gestures across species. We can think, too, of pollen allergies and their increased prevalence as an index of our environed embodiment. Or how hormone-like substances seep from plastics into microorganisms, fish bodies, human infants in increasingly aggressive polymere ecologies. While culture and nature never were in fact separated but for academic divisions of labour, we live in a time when the so called “human mastery”, alterations, and especially the “slow violence (Nixon 2011) of these naturcultural relationships of embodied environments and environed embodiments appear to us more clearly. For such power-imbued yet generative relationships, we need a more-than-human humanities. We also need expertise on human differences; those between men and women; between men and men, or women and women; transgender, and internal to our, after all, not-so-fully rational human (and microbial) Selfhood. More-than-human and human differences (gender, class, race, nationality, age, sexual orientation, specie- or land relationality, etc) interplay in intricate ways, socially. Our work at the Posthumanities Hub, take such differences very seriously as we make our case for diverse feminist forms of the posthumanities (Wolfe 2003). Our starting points are diverse too; a love for science, art and philosophy,  postnatural feminisms, technological empowerment, humanities disciplines like history, literature, philosophy, languages, the cyborg ontology and situated epistemology of Donna Haraway (1991), anti-racist justice movements and anti-colonial environmentalism, veganism, plant theory, and multispecies justice. All of these are critical and creative endevours that provide mind-sets and society’s psyche with new concepts to guide thought and practice.  At The Posthumanities Hub, we embrace a feminist posthumanities that stands able to frame naturecultures unfolding and recalibrate humanities analytics for an Anthropocene of many differences. We aim for alliances and research worthy of our complex times, a humanities for our  “postnatural” condition of human and nonhuman co-constitution of the planetary.