RG#1: The Future is a Collective Project

The Future is a Collective Project

7.00pm
Eve of new moon in Pisces (Tuesday March 8th)
Green Ray / Unit 7 / 50 Resolution Way / SE8 4NT

This a participatory research group, akin to a reading group but not limited to texts. It is grounded in the question: Are we carrying the right tools to shape the future we want and need?

Through collectively viewing, reading, talking and thinking about art works/texts/books/films/projects, that address the idea of the future from the position of ‘the other’, it is hoped that the group can begin to explore the following:

// Marginalised ideas and practices of the past being essential considerations in thinking about the future;
// The future as a tool of fiction for asserting our desires and articulating what is missing or ignored in the present;
// The possibilities of future thinking from the position of ‘the other’

The Future is a Collective Project aims to provide a fortnightly space to pool knowledge whilst slowing down, regrouping, considering and planning.

In the interest of moving outside of the Western and patriarchal construction of clock time and its characterisations of past, present and future, meetings will be scheduled according to the lunar calendar.

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In this session, we will be looking at Isabelle Stenger’s 2008 essay, ‘Experimenting with Refrains: Subjectivity and the Challenge of Escaping Modern Dualism’, which is a key text in my research and the genesis of this group. Stengers formulates a powerful argument for thinking outside of Modernist notions of knowledge and reclaiming ways of being, sustaining and comforting ourselves in order to overcome the capitalist tradition.

The text is available to read here:

http://www.palgrave-journals.com/sub/journal/v22/n1/full/sub20086a.html

**Please note that there is no obligation to read the text in advance as we will read it together before discussion during the session (although you are more than welcome to). However, it would useful to bring it with you on your laptop/ipad/printed out/etc.**

Abstract:

“The attempt is made to address the question of the “production of subjectivity” in relation to those who refer to such productions – that is, the imagined reader of this journal. The envisaged challenge is that of escaping the web of conflicting definitions, which Latour has connected with the “invincibility of the moderns”, of fabricating a “line of flight”, which does not denounce, but rather reveals, makes perceptible, the special power of the modern territory. An important step, introduced by William James, is to abandon epistemological questions in favour of the care and concern demanded by that which is “coming into existence”, and by its milieu, which may nurture or poison it. Poisoning is easy but nurturing is a craft, the neglect of which may be understood in relation to our vulnerability to capitalism. The concept of taking seriously the need to reclaim this craft is developed with the help of neo-pagan witch Starhawk.”

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Isabelle Stengers, born in 1949, teaches philosophy at the Université libre de Bruxelles. Her interests centred first around modern sciences and their toxic association with claims to rational authority. She is now working on the crucial challenge, both political and cultural, of an ecology that would embed our many diverging practices in a democratic and demanding environment. She has written numerous books, among which, in English, are Order out of Chaos (with I. Prigogine), A History of Chemistry (with B. Bernadette Bensaude-Vincent), Power and Invention, Situating Science and The Invention of Modern Science.

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The Future is a Collective Project is grounded in the research of Goldsmiths MFA Curating student and Green Ray co-director, Nathalie Boobis. All participants will be credited as researchers in her work and any participant that wishes to use the sessions for their own research is encouraged to do so.

If you haven’t already, please email nathalie.boobis@gmail.com to express your interest in attending in order to get an idea of numbers and be added to the mailing list.

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Dates of future meetings for your diary:

The full moon in Libra (March 23rd)
The new moon in Aries (April 7th)

 

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