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Conference - Precarious Representations

When Jan 12, 2018 01:00 PM to
Jan 13, 2018 05:00 PM
Where FRIAS, Albertstr. 19, seminar room
Contact Name
Contact Phone +49 (0)761 203-97362
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The term precarity designates conditions that are marked by a lack of safety. Originally associated with Pierre Bourdieu, it refers to the broader social consequences of economic deprivation. In the post-crisis era, a majority of Americans lead precarious lives. Assuming that the economy will fail to bring about economic wellbeing of the majority in the near future, a considerable part of the middle class will experience socio-economic suffering.

Over the last decade, the number of representations warning us about the diminishing middle class and the increasing poverty in the U.S. has skyrocketed. These interventions alarm the public and plead for change. But 'precarious representations' are not merely representations of precarity. They are representations that are formally complex. Their suggestive, ambiguous mode makes precarious representations potentially disturbing and invariably arresting.

The aim of this conference is to contribute to the emerging field of Precarity Studies building on the pioneering research that for example Judith Butler and Simon During have produced. In addition to class-based precarity, we explore articulations of political and ecologically-induced precarity. Speakers from the USA, Britain, Germany and India will analyze literary, journalistic, and (tele)visual representations that focus on, or protest against, such conditions.

Organisation: Prof. Dr. Sieglinde Lemke, Englisches Seminar