My Time in Pittsburgh

This past weekend I was in Pittsburgh to present a paper at the “Screen Textures: Haptics, Tactility, and the Moving Image” conference organized by the Film Studies Graduate Student Organization. I met some very nice people and had a great time. But the highlight of the trip was not anything that was directly connected with the conference. At the end of the conference keynote by Eugenie Brinkema, someone not at the conference introduced themselves to me. It was Tom Sparrow (who blogs at Plastic Bodies). He and I have interacted on Twitter and through our blogs but had never met face to face. So this was a pleasant surprise. I really enjoy meeting people who I have been in contact online but have never met in the flesh. Anyway, we ended up having a good conversation at a bar later that night. It made my trip.

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How Much Should Graduate Students Publish?

There is a great debate about how much graduate students should be publishing in the comments section of this post in the philosophy news blog Daily Nous.

Enjoy!

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We’re hiring

troyrhoades:

Forwarding a job post some of you might be interested in.

Originally posted on PHILOSOPHY IN A TIME OF ERROR:

The Department of Philosophy at Memorial University of Newfoundland is advertising a tenure track position at the level of Assistant Professor, beginning 1 July, 2015. The Department is seeking to hire a specialist in Feminist Philosophy. The successful candidate must have a strong background in and be working within the history of philosophy. The Department is particularly interested in candidates with expertise in figures and topics within the historical period between the Ancients and the 19th century. The successful candidate will contribute to one or more of the Department’s three research clusters: Metaphysics and its History, Ethics and Social and Political Philosophy, and Kant and Continental Philosophy. The teaching load includes five courses in total per year with the opportunity to teach in our graduate program (MA and PhD) and chances for a course remission, while maintaining an active research agenda and engaging in academic service. The Department of Philosophy at Memorial University…

View original 227 more words

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Updates to My Forthcoming Talks

I have made an update to my forthcoming talks page and have added all my talks for the coming fall. You can find it here.

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“A Semblance of Sight: The Touch of Zhang Yu’s Fingerprints”

I will be presenting my paper “A Semblance of Sight: The Touch of Zhang Yu’s Fingerprints” at the Toucher par l’art: autour de l’aptique/Touched by Art: Around Haptic symposium at the Université de Montréal on November 13-14, 2014.

Here is the abstract for the paper:
Each of Chinese painter Zhang Yu’s abstract colour-field works from his Fingerprint series (2003-ongoing) begins with a touch. With either red or black ink on the tip of his index finger, he reaches towards a large sheet of rice paper, touching it repeatedly until it is completely covered. Each of the thousands of imprints made on the paper not only leave a coloured trace of Zhang’s fingerprint, but it also physically stamps the peaks and valleys of his fingerprint directly into the paper. The paintings visibly quiver, offering us a seeing experience that is more than visual. These works generates a feeling, which can only be but felt through the activity of seeing, that is simultaneously haptic and kinaesthetic. Through sight we become aware of the subtle haptic sensations of the micro-textures made in the paper by the grooves of Zhang’s finger and the kinaesthetic feeling produced by the colour’s ability to self-vibrate and relationally resonate. Ultimately, what comes to be experienced when gazing at Zhang’s colour-field fingerprint paintings, as this paper will argue, is a “semblance” of sight. Semblance, as Brian Massumi writes, is how the virtual (in the Deleuzian sense) actually appears in the midst of an experience. Through our ability to see, we do not actually feel the roughness of Zhang’s fingerprint or the colour of each imprint vibrate. Instead, these sensations we come to experience in the seeing are the effects of a potential found within sight that enable it to exceeds itself. This paper will demonstrate how Zhang’s work, through its ability to activate feelings of the haptic and the kinaesthetic, enables us to become aware that sight always has the potential to exceed what is actually visible and generate a semblance in the seeing.

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CFP for Public 51 on Colour

Here is another call for papers. This time it is from the journal Public on the theme of colour. Here is the call:

Publication Spring 2015

Edited by Scott Lyall and Christine Davis

Before the most primitive dyes could be developed – before ink – there must have been colouring agents. There must have been wonder as colour saturated the tissue for thought. There could never be grey matter (as Marcel Duchamp described it).

But is it really still possible to wonder about colour? Does colour still empower and give significance to the world? Does colour command emotion, creativity – even a soul – in ways that liberate productive energies, conscious thought, and forceful signs? How does colour record the who and what of our epoch, and how might it be fixed and given over to posterity? How is colour changing – technologically and culturally – and how does changing colours change difference for the arts?

Beginning from discussions between collaborating artists, this special issue of PUBLIC seeks partners and correspondents from all milieus where colour is currently changing, and being rethought. From philosophical deployment to bio-chemical induction, from environmental evidence to spirits and mythologies, and from art historical objects (traces of colour preserved as artworks) to the manufacturing sectors that develop new techniques for color production, distribution, organization, and consumption.

Our premise is that colour has a future in the arts if it affects significant contrasts in contemporary perception. Accepted contributions will record these effects, and – borrowing a term from cinema, will function as RUSHES: image-capture (retentions) that have yet to be installed within synthetic cultural theories, abstract models, or scored codes. The conditions of these rushes cannot be deduced from general ‘theory’, a scientific norm, or philosophical first principles. They depend on transformations of sensible experience, of ways of perceiving, being affected, and recording. Colour rushes appear as either facts or fictions, or as fantasies, erasures, spirit energies, and forces. Sometimes, they appear by way of literal documentation, but they are never fully abstracted from figures (that is, metaphors). Colour records effects of colonization and resistance, of technical euphoria, and environmental fear. Colour can be fast (like rushes fixed on recording media); and it can move in flickering images that circumnavigate our globe. (Of course, colour can also hang in the air like an atmosphere – the strange feeling of global drift beneath the grey of (computing) Clouds.

We are looking for changing colour as condensed in written aphorisms – or allegories, affirmations, confessions and sorrows, margin notes, postings, poetic licenses, and shared files. We seek descriptive words on any colour, of any kind, of any length up to 1,200 – 1,500 words. Contributors will be individual, collective, or anonymous – and are free to propose more than one entry for this volume. We also encourage extracts from broader research projects, without regard to whether the focus of this research is colour, or if the author otherwise intends to build a bridge to the visual arts. Images, with captions, may also be proposed – although “Artists’ Projects” will not be specifically differentiated.

PUBLIC 51 will be a rush of changing Colour. Please send proposals of no more than 300 words along with a short bio to PUBLIC, care of Aleksandra Kaminska, by no later than October 1, 2014.

Timeline:
Proposals (300 words): October 1, 2014
Invitations sent out: October 15, 2014
Full contributions due: January 5, 2015
Publication: late Spring 2015

Contact:
Aleksandra Kaminska
Managing Editor
aleks@publicjournal.ca

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CFP for the Shortest “Journal” #tweettheory

My colleagues at the Department of Biological Flow have made a call for “papers” (the term is used loosely) for their new online “journal” #tweettheory. The topic of the first issue is “a machine”

The original call and some of the posts are below (including my contribution):

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