Mobilising Community Futures, or can/should/must we do away with hope?
Workaround: In current version of Panels 3.8, it seems this body field needs to be populated in order for title above to appear. This note is hidden by custom CSS style. Jack Latimer.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012 (All day)Birkbeck College, University of London
Speakers will include: Davina Cooper (Kent), Matthew Ratcliffe (Durham) and Peter Thompson (Sheffield)
Expectations, visions, political and social agendas and their mediation in cultural formations are at the heart of community identity and of mechanisms of inclusion and exclusion. This suggests that developing new ways of reflecting on the changing nature of communities requires that we explore how communities relate to the future.
From the totalitarian constructions of programmatic, abstract utopias in the 20th century to contemporary models of concrete utopia, direct democracy and contemporary ethics of care based on the idea of community as always yet-to-come, hope plays an important role in the formation of concepts of political agency, community belonging, normativity and meaning. For some, hope is understood to be a necessary requirement for political and social change, without which the inspiration and drive towards action is missing. For others, however, hope is seen as a dangerously pacifying affect that stifles necessary action in the present and so must be done away with.
This workshop aims to critically explore the many ways in which ideologies and practices of hope, utopianism and futurity effect communities and their interconnections. We are interested in moving towards a better understanding of the place hope occupies in contemporary thinking about communities. We aim to address the problematic nature of certain appeals to hope or to a future that is yet-to-come, while at the same time we will seek to answer the question to what extent hope is a necessary component of community life and collective agency.
Format of the workshop
We will be exploring the issue from a range of disciplinary perspectives, looking at both social or collective hope and the question of individual hope. To facilitate inter-disciplinary conversations, the day will be structured around three collaborative dialogue sessions, each based around a paper presentation and facilitated dialogue on the issues arising from the paper. The sessions are aimed at creating opportunities for collective exploration, based on thoughtful interaction rather than the traditional Q&A format. We are thus seeking participants interested in the theme of hope from a wide range of disciplines in the arts, humanities and social sciences, who are interested in exploring the significance of hope for our understandings of community. A session in which themes and questions for further research are formulated will close the day.
Participation at the workshop is free, but a £10.00 contribution to our costs is requested.
How to apply
To apply for a place please send a brief statement of your interest in the topic of no more than 200 words together with two suggested questions for discussion to Johan Siebers (email@example.com) by 15 April 2012. The number of places is limited to 40.
For more information on the Temporal Belongings network go to: www.temporalbelongings.org.