The Seminar 2012

Seminar 2012

Touch and Violence: Reading Toni Morrison’s Jazz with Irigaray by Jaleel Akhtar
(PhD Candidate, School of English, University of Sussex, UK)
Touch is at the heart of Luce Irigaray’s dialectic regarding our relations with others.  It is a gesture that responds to the call of the other, and first from the mother (Sharing the World, p. 20). Touching corresponds to a gesture of respect and reverence towards the source of the call or a gesture of violence if it seeks to appropriate the body or subjectivity of the other (ibid.). Read more. . .

Male Bodies, Masculinities and Sexual Difference: a sketch for an impossible “becoming-man” by Ovidiu Anemțoaicei
(PhD Candidate, Department of Gender Studies, Central European University, Hungary)
In my work I answer, among other things, the question of what it means to think of men, their bodies and subjectivities, if one goes along Luce Irigaray’s radical project of refiguring the relationships between and among men and women for and within a culture of sexual/sexuate difference. I propose a framework that can account for ethical dimensions in men’s lives by drawing on the importance of male bodies and their lived experiences and practices, within the masculine subjective formation processes, and on their potential subversive agency against the patriarchal ordering of the social relations. Read more . . .

Coming to Voice by Marianne Choquet
(PhD Candidate, Department of English Literature, University of Barcelona, Spain, supported by University of Iowa, U.S.A.)
I am American and French and I live in Spain. My PhD composite thesis, ‘The Quest to Self-Construct: Lucy Pilgrim’s Map’ is affiliated with the doctorate program The Construction and Representation of Cultural Identities within the English Literature Department at University of Barcelona and has been supported by the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa. Three quarters of this composite thesis is a novel I have written titled Lucy, Go See, which is a bildungsroman yet more than a coming-of-age novel. Read more . . .

A philosophy faithful to happiness. A dialogue with Luce Irigaray by Lucia Del Gatto
(PhD Candidate, Università Studi di  Perugia, Italy)
The Western world is going through a dramatic crisis of historicity. Beset by numerous difficulties, the most alarming issue of all may be the widespread inhibition of our faculty for transformation. Increasingly, the media and our individual experiences indicate a crisis in our capacity to modify the conditions of our existence in terms of our aspiration to happiness. Read more . . .

Paradigm shift and Metamodernism in Literature by Alexandra Dumitrescu
(PhD Candidate, University of Otago, New Zealand)
My thesis uses the notion of metamodernism and investigates the characteristics of this paradigm in relation with previous paradigms of thought, especially modernism and postmodernism. Metamodernism is defined from a variety of perspectives as a paradigm of integration: of faculties (reason and emotions), of systems of thought, of ontological levels, as exemplified in the poetry of William Blake and the denouement of Michel Tournier’s Vendredi ou les limbes du Pacifique. Read more . . .

The other woman. A diffractive rereading of the works of Simone de Beauvoir and Luce Irigaray by Evelien Geerts
(Alumna of the Graduate Gender Programme, Utrecht University, The Netherlands)
This diffractive (re)reading project that has to be located in the domains of Continental philosophy and feminist theory wishes to overcome the Oedipalized reception history or the Oedipal feminist narratives that have been created and told about the philosophies of Simone de Beauvoir and Luce Irigaray. This problematic reception history – as I will argue – mistakenly put the works of de Beauvoir and Irigaray against one another in an oppositional and hierarchic manner by focusing on the assumption that Irigaray should be seen as de Beauvoir’s rebellious daughter . . . Read more . . .

Luce Irigaray, Feminine Deities and Politics by Erla Karlsdottir
(PhD Candidate, Faculty of History and Philosophy, School of Humanities, University of Iceland, Iceland)
In my doctoral thesis I will work with the relevance of Irigaray´s philosophy of sexual difference towards radical democratic theory and politics. I will do it by combining two main topics of her thought. First, I will study her thought about the feminine divine as an opportunity for opening up new possibilities of becoming that emphasize relationality ‒ to others and to social and natural environments via the body. Second, I will work out a different notion of ‘political power’ on the basis of these ideas and Irigaray´s understanding of democracy as sharing the world. Read more . . .

Rape and the Rape Trial: An Irigarayan Vision of Justice by Yvette Russell
(PhD Candidate, Kent Law School, University of Kent, UK)
My PhD project investigates the concept of justice as it appears in the work of Luce Irigaray.  It attempts to think-through this concept with reference to the crime of rape.  The failure of law as a tool deft enough to adequately respond to the complexity of sexual violence is a criticism long made by feminist writers.  In England and Wales, the Sexual Offences Act 2003 instigated major reform of both the actus reus and mens rea components of rape with virtually no corresponding increase in conviction rates. Read more . . .

Can Luce Irigaray’s concept of sexuate difference help XY-women to form a more useful relationship to their biology? by Margaret Simmonds
(PhD Candidate, Gender Studies Department, University of Sussex, UK)
The plight of South African athlete Caster Semenya, whose female sex was questioned a few years ago by the sporting authorities, has brought the phenomenon of intersex into public consciousness. This naturally occurring bodily state has been subject to much medicalisation, secrecy, and surgical ‘normalisation’, leading to stigma and feelings of abjection and freakishness in those affected. My PhD thesis looks at the experience of 114 intersexed individuals who are at the female end of the continuum of male-female body forms. Read more . . .

Justice, Universals and Sexual Difference by Damien Tissot
(PhD Candidate, Centre d’Etudes féminines et d’études de genre, Université Paris 8- Saint-Denis/Vincennes, France)
My research interest focuses on transnational dialogues between feminisms. My Master’s thesis explored the complex relationships between American feminism, French feminism and French Theory. In my dissertation, I am trying to expand the theme of my thesis by questioning the feminist claims of Justice, from a philosophical point of view. My dissertation studies the way feminists use the concept of the universal in their political claims for more equality and/or equity between men and women. Read more . . .

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