CUNY: September

Critical/Liberal/Arts 2

27 September 2013

The Graduate Center, CUNY

Martin E. Segal Theatre Center

365 Fifth Avenue



AUDIOFILES of Symposium:

An Interstellar Raft of the Medusa: Audiofiles from Critical/Liberal/Arts 2 @CUNY

See also A.W. Strouse’s review of the symposium in Hortulus:

The Kids Are Reading Chaucer

Schedule of Events

9:00 – 10:00 am: Registration/Coffee & Tea

10:00 – 10:15 am: Opening Remarks

10:15 – 11:30 am:

*some suggested readings (not hyperlinked below) may be available by request [email:]

  • Henry Turner, Rutgers University: “Universitas: On Corporate Personhood as a Critical Liberal Art, with Special Reference to Hamlet and to You”

Suggested Readings: (1) Jacques Derrida, “Where a Teaching Body Begins, and How it Ends,” in Who’s Afraid of Philosophy? : Right to Philosophy 1 (Stanford, 2002); (2) Jacques Derrida, “Mochlos, or The Conflict of the Facutlies” and “The Principle of Reason: the University in the Eyes of its Pupils,” in Eyes of the University: Right to Philosophy 2 (Stanford, 2004); (3) Frederic William Maitland, “Moral Personality and Legal Personality,” in The Collected Papers of Frederic William Maitland, Vol. 3 (Cambridge, 1911).

Suggested Readings: (1) Paul Boshears, “Open-Access and Para-Academic Practice,” continent. [blog], Nov. 12, 2012; (2) Aaron Bady, “The MOOC Movement and the End of Reform,” The New Inquiry: ZunguZungu [blog], May 15, 2013.

11:30 am – 12:30 pm:

  • Eleanor Johnson, Columbia University: “Toad Poetry: A Call for a New Critical Vernacular”

Suggested Readings: (1) Juliana Spahr, Spiderwasp or Literary Criticism (Spectacular Books, 1998); (2) Lisa Robertson, Debbie: An Epic (New Star Books, 1997); (3) Alice Notley, The Descent of Alette (Penguin Poets, 1996).

  • Ammiel Alcalay, The Graduate Center, CUNY: “From the Cairo Genizah to Diane di Prima’s Garage: Lost & Found & the Pedagogy of Transmission”

Suggested Readings: (1) Ed Sanders, Investigative Poetry (City Lights Books, 1976); (2) selections from Gordon Brotherston, Book of the Fourth World: Reading the Native  Americas Through Their Literature (Cambridge, 1995); (3) Diane di Prima, “Old Father, Old Artificer”: Charles Olson Memorial Lecture, ed. Ana Božičević & Ammiel Alcalay, The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative 3.4 (Fall 2012); (4) Carl O. Sauer, “Foreword to Historical Geography,” Annals of the Association of American Geographers 31.1 (March 1941): 1-24; (5) selections from Amilcar Cabral, Return to the Source: Selected Speeches by Amilcar Cabral (Monthly Review Press, 1973).

12:30 – 2:15 pm: LUNCH

2:15 – 3:15 pm:

Suggested Readings: (1) Alan Bray, “Wedded Brother,” in Alan Bray, The Friend (Chicago, 2003), 13-41; (2) C.S. Lewis, “Friendship—The Least Necessary Love,” in Friendship: A Philosophical Reader, ed. Neera Kapur Badhwar (Cornell, 1993), 39-47.

  • Allen W. Strouse, The Graduate Center, CUNY: “Sir Orpheus as Poet, King, and Historian: Towards a Poetics of Literary History”

Suggested Readings: (1) Eileen A. Joy, “Weird Reading,” Speculations IV (2013): 28-34; (2) “Wayne Koestenbaum, “Metamorphoses (Masked Ball),” in The Milk of Inquiry (New York: Persea, 1999), 75-114; (3) Chaucer, “The Cook’s Tale,” in The Canterbury Tales.

3:15 – 4:15 pm:

  • Jamie “Skye” Bianco, New York University: “Q3C: Queer, Creative, Critical Compositionism (or, Tooling Affection from Allure)”

Suggested Readings: (1) Jane Bennett, Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things [Intro. + Chaps. 1-2] (Duke University Press, 2010); (2) Bruno Latour, “Why Has Critique Run Out of Steam? From Matters of Fact to Matters of Concern,” Critical Inquiry 30 (2004): 225-248.

  • Eirik Steinhoff, The Evergreen State College: “Making nothing happen, or, The figure of default: placebo, sabotage, poetry”

Suggested Readings: (1) A Third Fiery Flying Roule (2011) + A Tenth Fiery Flying Roule (2011); (2) Elliott Colla, “The Poetry of Revolt” (2011) + “The People Want” (2012); (3) Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, Sabotage: The Conscious Withdrawal of the Workers’ Industrial Efficiency (1917) + Thorstein Veblen, “On the Nature and Uses of Sabotage,” chapter 1 of The Engineers and the Price System (1921).

4:15 – 4:45 pm: Coffee/Tea Break

4:45 – 5:45 pm:

Suggested Readings: (1) Sarah Allison, Ryan Heuser, Matthew Jockers, Franco Moretti, and Michael Witmore, “Quantitative Formalism: An Experiment,” Pamphlet 1: Stanford Literary Lab (Jan. 15, 2011)

  • Marina Zurkow, Tisch School of the Arts + Una Chaudhuri, New York University: “Unthinking Survivalism: Inner Climate Change”

Suggested Readings: (1) Wallace Shawn, Grasses of a Thousand Colors: A Play (Theatre Communications Group, 2009); (2) Tara Brach, “mindfulness/guided meditations” , (3) “The 3 Things You Will Always Need in an Urban Survival Situation,” Survival Cache: The Gear Site for Survivalists.

5:45 – 6:00 pm: Closing Remarks

6:00 – 7:00 pm: Wine Reception

Special thanks for hosting this event go to: BABEL Working Group, punctum books, The Medieval Studies Certificate Program and The Ph.D. Program in English (The Graduate Center, CUNY)


14 thoughts on “CUNY: September”

  1. Who did the art work for this page? It´s great!

  2. Thank you! To be fair, you really should credit the artist´s work. Greeting from Mexico City!

  3. Rowena: if you look at our home-page, we do of course credit the artist.

  4. Indeed, Eileen. Since the Columbia page linked me right to here, I did not notice it. Thanks for the info and good luck with the symposium!

  5. Danica Savonick said:

    Thank you so much for this inspiring conference–such a rejuvenating experience that reminded me how exciting liberal arts scholarship can be. Would it be possible for someone to post the guiding questions for the conference that were introduced in the opening remarks?

  6. Dear Danica: thanks SO much for your comments! You’ll be happy to know that we podcast-recorded the entire day, including opening remarks, and if you come back to this site, within 2 weeks those recordings will be posted here! Cheers, Eileen

  7. I’m so glad to hear that, Eileen. I’ve been raving about the conference, and will be sure to share the podcast with those who weren’t able to attend. I’ve also been sharing “Weird Reading” with my colleagues in the hope of generating even more conversation around these exciting possibilities. Thanks again to the conference organizers!

  8. Danica: thanks for your generous enthusiasm!

  9. Eileen (or others): is the podcast for this available yet? Thanks!

  10. Danica [if you’re still out there somewhere]: here are the audiofiles for this symposium:

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