Friday, 14 December 2012

"The Tragic Dimension of Analytical Experience"

The first meeting of the Reading Group for 2013 will be on Thursday the 31st of January at 5.15pm in the School of English.

We will look at Lacan's "The Tragic Dimension of Analytical Experience"  in Seminar VII: The Ethics of Psychoanalysis, ed. Jacques-Alain Miller, trans. Dennis Porter (Routledge), pp. 293-325.
The text will be introduced by Linda Roland Danil (CIGS, Leeds).

This group is generously funded by the Leeds Humanities Research Institute's Graduate Research Funding Programme.

Friday, 7 December 2012

"The Essence of Tragedy: A Commentary on Sophocles's Antigone

The final meeting of the Reading Group for 2012 was on Thursday the 6th of December at 5.10pm in the Douglas Jefferson Room of the School of English.

We looked at Lacan's "The Essence of Tragedy: A Commentary on Sophocles's Antigone"  in Seminar VII: The Ethics of Psychoanalysis, ed. Jacques-Alain Miller, trans. Dennis Porter (Routledge), pp. 243-90.
Dr Elizabeth Pender (Classics) introduced the text.

This group is generously funded by the Leeds Humanities Research Institute's Graduate Research Funding Programme

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Desire and the Interpretation of Desire in Hamlet: 22nd of November 2012

The next meeting of the Reading Group will be on Thursday the 22nd of November at 5.10pm in the Douglas Jefferson Room of the School of English.

We will be looking at Lacan's "Desire and the Interpretation of Desire in Hamlet" as published in Yale French Studies No. 55/56 (1977).

Ed Powell (English) will introduce the text.

Some wine will be served

This group is generously funded by the Leeds Humanities Research Institute's Graduate Research Funding Programme

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Seminar on 'The Purloined Letter': 1st of November 2012

The next meeting of the Lacan Read(s) Across the Disciplines Reading Group will be on Thursday the 1st of November at 5.10pm in the Alumnus Room of the School of English.

We will be looking at Lacan's "Seminar on 'The Purloined Letter'" from Écrits: The First Complete Edition in English.
Dr Stefan Skrimshire (Theology and Religious Studies) will introduce the text.

Some wine will be served

This group is generously funded by the Leeds Humanities Research Institute's Graduate Research Funding Programme.

Friday, 28 September 2012

Courtly Love as anamorphosis: Thursday 11th of October

The next Quilting Points Reading Group meeting will be on Thursday 11th of October in the Douglas Jefferson Room of the School of English at 5.15pm.

The text under discussion will be "Courtly Love as anamorphosis" from Lacan's Seminar 7: The Ethics of Psychoanalysis.

It will be introduced by Arthur Rose.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Seminar: Revolutionary Sex in Walton's *Troilus and Cressida*

Our first Speaker will be Dr Paul Harper-Scott (Royal Holloway). He will be presenting in Seminar Room 3 of the LHRI at 5.15pm on Thursday the 27th of September. His paper is titled "Revolutionary Sex in Walton's *Troilus and Cressida*".

Abstract:
William Walton's opera *Troilus and Cressida* is an unexpectedly arresting intervention in the ideological field of sexuality and gender. Drawing on theories of sex, love, pornography, and communism by Jacques Lacan, Alain Badiou, and Giorgio Agamben, this paper argues that the circling of desire around the structural impossibility of a sexual connexion leads Troilus and Cressida to challenge culturally mandated scripts for normative heterosexuality in modernity. Paying particular attention to the pornographic interlude in which they consummate their love and the paradoxical deepening of their commitment to one another through Cressida's betrayal of Troilus, it suggests possibilities for conceiving a revolutionary love. Such a love, rather than acting out possibilities already culturally encoded in a particular sexuality or gender, can have the effect of creating new forms of human subjectivity.

Bio:
Paul Harper-Scott is Reader in Musicology and Theory at RHUL. He has written widely on Wagner and post-Wagnerian operatic and symphonic music, drawing heavily on the philosophy and theory of Heidegger, Badiou, Zizek, and Marx. His third book, "The Quilting Points of Musical Modernism", is just out from CUP.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Beckett in Theory 2011/12


I was like all the other students of philosophy at the time, and for me, the rupture came with Beckett: Waiting for Godot, a breath-taking spectacle. - Michel Foucault
Bruno Clement, writing of early critical responses to Beckett's Trilogy by, amongst others, George Bataille, Maurice Blanchot, and Alain Robbe-Grillet, notes that they are all written "under influence."
I mean... their content is indebted, in more than one way, depending on the particular case, to the discourse used by the work itself.
Writing "under influence," philosophers from Bataille to Badiou have chosen to write their philosophy through Beckett. Richard Begam, Anthony Uhlmann, Steven Connor, Leslie Hill, Thomas Trezise, and other notable Beckett critics have commented extensively on the impact this has had in the realm of Beckett studies. Andrew Gibson has demonstrated the reciprocal impact Beckett has upon a reading of Badiou, for whom Beckett constitutes "a sort of subjective blow, the imprint of which is ineffaceable." If, as Begam writes, "Beckett's own peculiar idiom has entered into, in a sense has become, the dominant cultural language of the last fifty years", critical theory itself always comes "after" a certain kind of Beckett.

The theme for the reading group meetings over 2011/2012 will be "Beckett in Theory". By this, we mean to read those texts by theorists responding directly to Beckett. If "Beckett" is a quilting point that surfaces again and again in theory in the second half of the twentieth century, it is because Beckett's work is seen as particularly receptive to the ideas of the thinkers themselves. As such, the way "Beckett" is taken up by a theorist is as illustrative of a particular thinker's philosophy as it is of Beckett's actual oeuvre. We will discuss how reading "Beckett" becomes a means to reading theory by earmarking those theorists whose responses to Beckett elucidate concerns in their general philosophies.


The following is a programme of reading group meetings held through the 2011/12 Academic Year:


Wednesday 5th October: Maurice Blanchot 'Where Now? Who Now?': Review of The Unnameable

Douglas Jefferson Room, School of English, 5:15 pm 
Introduced by Arthur Rose

Tuesday 25th October: Theodor Adorno 'Trying to Understand Endgame'

Douglas Jefferson Room, School of English, 5.15 pm
Introduced by Michael Springer

Tuesday 15th November: Gilles Deleuze 'The Exhausted'

Douglas Jefferson Room, School of English, 5.15 pm
Introduced by Dr Ruth Kitchen

Tuesday 6th December: Georges Bataille, 'Molloy's Silence'

Douglas Jefferson Room, School of English, 5.15 pm
Introduced by Dr Claire Lozier

Tuesday 31st January: Stanley Cavell 'Ending the Waiting Game: A Reading of Beckett's "Endgame"'

Seminar Room 5, School of English, 5.15 pm
Introduced by Michael Springer

Tuesday 21st February: Simon Critchley 'Lecture 3 Know happiness- On Beckett'

pp. 165-208 of Very LittleAlmost Nothing
Douglas Jefferson Room, School of English, 5.15 pm
Introduced by Dr Richard Brown

Tuesday 13th March: Alain Badiou 'The Writing of the Generic'

Douglas Jefferson Room, School of English, 5.15 pm
Introduced by Michael Kelly

Tuesday 17th April: J.M. Coetzee 'Eight Ways of Looking at Samuel Beckett'

Douglas Jefferson Room, School of English, 5.15pm
Introduced by Dr Sam Durrant

Monday, 16 April 2012

James Joyce Seminar: David Vichnar (Birkbeck) on Wednesday 2nd of May at 5.15pm


David Vichnar will be giving the seminar "Reading Joyce Reading Theory - From the beginning" in Seminar Room 5 of the School of English on Wednesday the 2nd of May at 5.15pm. This seminar is organized by the Quilting Points and James Joyce Reading Groups. Some wine will be served and all are welcome. The abstract is given below.

"READING JOYCE READING THEORY - FROM THE BEGINNING" (Abstract)

The seminar will focus on the first three stories from Joyce's Dubliners ("The Sisters," "An Encounter" and "Araby"). The paper examines Joyce´s "signature" (as theorised by Derrida), specifically the seemingly contrary effects of Joyce´s writing which in Derrida´s words, "pushes us to the limit" and "compels us to ask what a literary text is and what we should do with it." The discussion will analyse the readiness with which theoretical frameworks can be said to apply to Joyce´s texts by dealing with some of the strategies by which Joyce's "signature" comes about.

David Vichnar is author of JOYCE AGAINST THEORY (2010), co-editor,
with Louis Armand, of HYMPERMEDIA JOYCE (2010), and, with Mike Groden
and David Spurr, of PRAHARFEAST: ESSAYS FROM THE PRAGUE SYMPOSIUM
(forthcoming in 2012). He is the editor of the online journal of Joyce
scholarship, "Hypermedia Joyce Studies." He also co-edits the
international magazine for contemporary fiction, poetry, theory and
visual arts, VLAK; and co-directs the annual Prague Poetry
Microfestival.
He is currently visiting Birkbeck College, University of London,
working on his PhD thesis devoted to James Joyce and post-war
experimental literature in English and French.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

J.M. Coetzee "Eight Ways of Looking at Samuel Beckett" on Tuesday the 17th of April

We will be meeting again in the Douglas Jefferson Room of the School of English at 5.15pm on Tuesday the 17th of April to discuss J.M. Coetzee's address to the 2006 Borderless Beckett Conference in Tokyo. Dr Sam Durrant (Leeds) will be  introducing the text, following which there will be a general discussion. Some wine will be served.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Alain Badiou "The Writing of the Generic" on Tuesday the 13th of March


We will be meeting again on Tuesday the 13th of March in the Douglas Jefferson Room at 5.15 pm. The text under discussion will be Badiou's essay on generic form in Beckett, "The Writing of the Generic." Michael Kelly, the General Editor of the International Journal of Badiou Studies, will be introducing the text and then there will be some general discussion. Some wine will be served. 

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Simon Critchley's "Know Happiness... On Beckett"

The next meeting for the Quilting Points Reading Group will be in the Douglas Jefferson Room of the School of English at 5.15 on February 28th. The text under discussion will be Simon Critchley's chapter on Samuel Beckett, "Know Happiness... On Beckett" from Very Little…Almost Nothing (Routledge, 2004).  Dr Richard Brown (Leeds) will give a short introduction to Critchley's work and its relation to Samuel Beckett's writing, which will be followed by a general discussion of the essay as both theory and commentary. Some wine will be served and people are welcome to bring their own.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Stanley Cavell's "Ending the Waiting Game"


The next meeting for the Quilting Points Reading Group will be in Seminar Room 5 of the School of English at 5.15 on January 31st. The text under discussion will be Stanley Cavell's essay on Samuel Beckett's "Endgame", "Ending the Waiting Game". Michael Springer (York) will give a short introduction to Cavell's work and its relation to Samuel Beckett's writing, which will be followed by a general discussion of the essay as both theory and commentary. Some wine will be served and people are welcome to bring their own.