We hope this finds you all enjoying the turn toward spring. Elizabeth Maddock Dillon’s visit in March was terrific, and we’re grateful to her for catalyzing a thoroughly engaging day of discussions, and Khalil Gibran Muhammad, who made the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture such an inviting space for us. We remain, of course, grateful to all of those who make RevAmStudies possible — President William Kelly and Sandy Robinson and Kathleen Stolarski in particular in his office; the Advanced Research Collaborative and especially Alida Rojas; the Center for the Humanities; and Chris Eng and Cambridge Ridley-Lynch, our collaborators on this initiative.
We’re excited to be looking forward to several events in April, including FRED MOTEN’s visit on Friday, 12 APRIL. The Helen L. Bevington Professor of Modern Poetry at Duke University, Fred Moten works in black studies at the intersection of performance, poetry and critical theory. He is author of numerous books and articles including Arkansas (Pressed Wafer Press, 2000), Poems (with Jim Behrle) (Pressed Wafer Press, 2002), In the Break: The Aesthetics of the Black Radical Tradition (University of Minnesota Press, 2003), I ran from it but was still in it. (Cusp Books, 2007), Hughson’s Tavern (Leon Works, 2008) and B Jenkins (Duke University Press, 2010).
PLEASE NOTE THE TIME CHANGE FOR THE SEMINAR, which will be held from 12:00-1:00 instead of our usual time slot, but in our usual space (room 8201.01). We will be discussing “The Touring Machine,” by Fred Moten; also, interview with Edouard Glissant (in conversation with Manthia Diawara); “Will Sovereignty Ever Be Deconstructed?” by Catherine Malabou; “New Spheres of Transnational Formations,” by Kamari Clarke; “Black in Time,” by Michelle Wright; “Response by Author,” by Kamari Clarke. (the readings are available on our Academic Commons group site; if you’re not a member of the Academic Commons, please feel free to drop a note to either of us for a copy of the readings.)
Professor Moten’s lecture, at 4pm in room 8201.01, is titled “Notes on Passage: Anepistemology, Paraontology, Insovereignty.” In this talk, Fred Moten considers what the thought, or the mode of study, of the refugee might be able to teach us about life beyond or over the edge of personal/political sovereignty. More specifically, this lecture addresses his interest in what a kind of stateless thinking, a thinking that remains in (middle) passage, still has to offer Afro-diasporic studies and, more broadly, the study of modernity in the Atlantic World.
Professor Moten’s visit caps a week that will begin with THE UNIVERSITY BEYOND CRISIS, a symposium we are cosponsoring on Monday, 8 April, from 11a-6p in the Skylight Room (9th floor), which is designed to occasion collaborative critical discussion that thinks beyond the rhetoric of crisis to ask, what is, or what ought to be, the relationship of the university to the common good? How might we envision and work toward the realization of a university that addresses that relationship and in the process, address the idea of the “common good”? What alternatives to defensive postures might be elaborated toward these ends? And, what other ends might we elaborate? Please see https://revolutionizingamericanstudies.commons.gc.cuny.edu/the-university-beyond-crisis-monday-8-april-2013/ for more information.
We want also to make note of yet another event we are cosponsoring that week, a roundtable discussion organized around Roderick A. Ferguson’s (a RevAmStudies alum!) Reorder of Things: The Universities and Its Pedagogies of Minority Difference. This event will be held in the Performance Studies space at NYU (721 Broadway, Room 612) on Tuesday, 9 April, at 3:30p. The roundtable features our own Patricia Clough, along with Tavia Nyong’o (NYU) and Laura Kang (UC Irvine). There will be a reception and book signing to follow (a limited number of copies will be available for sale at the rate of $15 each). Information about this event will circulate separately.
As always, all of our events are free and open to the public.
This will be a fabulous week for RevAmStudies — do come join us if you can!
Happy spring wishes to you all —
Kandice & Duncan