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The Critical Thought of Samuel Weber

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Organizer: Laura Chiesa

Co-Organizer: Kriss Ravetto-Biagioli

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Jacques Derrida’s last essay was an unfinished one about the work of his friend Samuel Weber. It concludes with Derrida describing Weber as an artist-weaver who knows how to stitch together and analyze, but it also identifies him as “absolutely singular.” 

Singularity is the topic of Samuel Weber’s current research: this panel hopes to explore not just how Weber has singularly created his own art of critical thinking but the way in which he has spun a thread to bring together a multitude of scholars from different disciplines, different regions, and different institutional settings. Hence, singularity (in Weber’s own words) is not so much absolute but instead relational (Samuel Weber, Toward a Politics and Poetics of Singularity, forthcoming). We invite presentations that offer ways of thinking through some of the more provocative challenges Samuel Weber has posed in his writing over the past several decades, elaborating and weaving key terms such as singularity, theatricality (place/space, gesture, staging), “-abilities,” language as medium, technics, debts and credits, militarization of thought and feeling, war on terror and target of opportunity, mass-mediauras, mediacy and immediacy, fakes news and media, thought and feeling, transference, ambivalence and the uncanny (just to mention a few) and among different fields (critical theory, literary studies, philosophy, psychoanalysis, film, media studies and digital humanities, music, theater and performance studies, political and religious studies). We seek papers that mobilize a conversation springing and/or intersecting with Samuel Weber’s long-lasting, ongoing, and singular work.


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