December 15, 2013, by ajzeg

Vital Theory: thanks and a few words…

Two days after our postgraduate symposium, Vital Theory, and I’m still feeling enthusiastic about the discussions we had and people we met. It’s easy to end (what can often be) a long and tiring term, feeling a little deflated – and I certainly felt that VT was the antidote to that. In the days to come people will be posting images and (hopefully) drafts of position papers, or general reflections about the event, here on the blog. I just wanted to take the time, though, to say thank you to everyone who attended. We really appreciated the fact that so many people came along and volunteered thoughts and feelings about some of the issues we were discussing – and contributed technological items to discuss in the object-workshop. A huge thanks to everyone who came, but thanks in particular to people who came from outside of Nottingham and to undergraduate students who were coming to an event like this for the first time.

I for one, really enjoyed all of the position papers, the workshops, the anti-market and Andy’s thought provoking keynote. I’ve posted a schedule of the day below, so if anyone didn’t make it but thought a particular talk sounded interesting then please leave a comment or email us with questions.

9.30-10.00 Welcome & Keynotes by Eva Giraud and Andy Goffey

10.00-11.25 10 minute position papers by Josh Bowsher (on NGOs as a technology of capital) and Stefanie Petschick (on commemoration’s capacity to function as a technology of capital), each followed by discussion.

11.35-1.00 10 minute position papers by Tom Harding (on the relationship between psychiatric categorisation, DSM-5 and capital) and Teodora Todorova (on the state, nationalism, bureaucracy and capital), each followed by discussion.


2.00-3.30 Object-workshop, where discussion was generated from technological objects people had brought in (including CCTV cameras, smartphones, non-smart phones [burners!], BBC computer cassette tapes, ‘defunct’ technology – from vinyl to discmans, mixtapes, chargers… and probably things I’ve forgotten…)

3.45-5.00 Critical Theory Anti-Market: including stalls on Alain Badiou (by David Eckersley),  José Esteban Muñoz (by Hongwei Bao),  Urban Silhouettes (by Gianlluca Simi),  Michel Foucault (by Josh Bowsher),  Jacques Lacan (by Tom Harding),  Judith Butler (by Stefanie Petschick) and  Wendy Brown (by Teodora Todorova).

5.00 Drinks and Theory Secret Santa

There was also a critical theory biscuit making competition (pictured are Tracey Potts’ fabulous Walter Benjamin themed biscuits), which clearly won.

So, basically, thank you everyone and if you came along and enjoyed the day, then please do keep in touch.



Posted in Centre for Critical TheoryNeoliberalismNews and Events