Posts

#7 'Strangers' with Dr Jay Prosser

Image
For our seventh session, we will be joined by Dr Jay Prosser for a special session on 'Strangers.' The session is intended to develop and complicate our thinking on strangers in Ahmed's work.

Dr Prosser is Reader in Humanities at the University of Leeds. He recommends that attendees read the following chapters from Tabish Khair's The New Xenophobia (2016) and Toni Morrison's The Origin of Others (2017) alongside a blog post from Ahmed on 'Making Strangers'.

A PDF of the Toni Morrison text is available here, and A PDF of the Tabish Khair text is available here.

Sara Ahmed's blog post, 'Making Strangers' is accessible here.
Back in October, for our first session of the academic year, we explored the figure of 'the stranger' in Ahmed's work through a reading of her essay, 'Embodying Strangers,' and Audré Lorde's essay 'Eye to Eye: Black Women, Hatred, and Anger*'. We considered how the stranger is produced by the su…

#6 'The Killjoy as World Maker - 06/02/18

Image
For our first session of the new semester, and our sixth session of the year, we will be reading sections from both the introduction and conclusion of Living a Feminist Life (2017)

Both readings expand upon Ahmed's conceptualisation of the feminist killjoy within The Promise of Happiness (2010), creating a radical articulation of contemporary feminism delivered in an accessible style. Concluding Living a Feminist Life with a 'killjoy manifesto', Ahmed challenges killjoys to expose the myths encouraged by neoliberalism and global capitalism, rejecting the principle of happiness as a political cause.  Join us for a timely discussion of how to 'make feminisms work in the places we live, the places we work', bringing 'theory back to life' and much more.

All welcome!

Details: Tuesday 6th February, 5-6:30pm, LHRI, Room 1.

QUILTING POINTS presents: Sara Ahmed - 11/05/18

Image
We're delighted to announce that Sara Ahmed will be joining us for a special event at the University of Leeds on Friday 11th May. Further details & information on booking will be released in the new year but in the meantime, save the date!

#5 'The Killjoy' - 28/11/17

Image
For our fifth and final session of this semester, we will be reading a section from the second chapter of Ahmed's The Promise of Happiness (2010), entitled 'Feminist Killjoys.' A PDF is accessible here.

For further reading on the figure of thekilljoy we suggest the essay 'Feminist Killjoys (And Other Willful Subjects)' which is available here

The Promise of Happiness highlights how the killjoy emerges in relation to many of the figures who populate Ahmed's arguments, responding to the conditions of other affect aliens and contesting the idea of happiness itself. As Ahmed explains 'the feminist killjoy ‘spoils’ the happiness of others; she is a spoilsport because she refuses to convene, to assemble or to meet up over happiness' (65). Our reading for this week allows us to reflect upon many of our discussions and themes from semester one, raising important considerations of happy objects, willful subjects and much more. 

The figure of the feminist killjoy …

#4 'The Alien' - 14/11/17

Image
For our fourth session, we will be discussing Sara Ahmed's concept of 'the alien' through a reading of her essay 'Happy Objects,' collected in Melissa Gregg and Gregory J. Seigworth's The Affect Theory Reader (2010) and republished under the same title in Ahmed's book, The Promise of Happiness (2009). A PDF is available via Google Drive here.

(Secondary reading: Ahmed's post, 'Smile!' which appeared on her blog feministkilljoys in February 2017 - accessible here).

In 'Happy Objects,' Ahmed conceptualises affects as "sticky" insofar as 'affect is what sticks, or what sustains or preserves the connection between ideas, values and objects' (29). She considers how, in the process of being affected, different affects are transferred onto particular objects and make such objects the arbiters of particular feelings. This is to say, an object that makes one feels good affectively is affectively transformed into a good/happy ob…

#3 'Disruptive and Wilful Subjects' - 31/10/17

Image
For our third session, we will be reading the first chapter of Sara Ahmed's Willful Subjects (2014), entitled 'Willing Subjects.' A PDF is accessible via Google Drive here.

(Secondary reading: a blog post by Sara Ahmed on feministkilljoys, entitled 'Willful Stones,' accessible here).

In 'Willing Subjects,' Ahmed is interested in fundamentally redefining "will" as not that which is behind action but, rather, 'an object of thought' and a 'mode of experience' that may or may not predicate an action (25). She construes the relationship between the potentiality of "willing" and the effects of "willing" in Lacanian terms as a split between 'the subject of enunciation and the subject of the énoncé' whereby '[t]he will appears on both sides of the address, on the side of the subject and the object: who is willing, what is willed' (27; original emphasis). To the extent that the willing subject is split, …

#2 'Affective and Affected Bodies' - 17/10/17

Image
For our second session (Tuesday 17th October), we will be reading the first chapter of Sara Ahmed's The Cultural Politics of Emotion (2004), entitled 'The Contingency of Pain.' A PDF is accessible via Google Drive here.

[Seconding reading: Susan Sontag's 'Photojournalism - social aspects' from Regarding the Pain of Others (2003). A PDF is accessible via Google Drive here].

In 'The Contingency of Pain,' Ahmed explores how bodies register pain psycho-somatically as well as through discourse. She is especially interested in how we discourse pain (i.e. by attaching pain to particular objects or by narrating the arrival of pain) in order to form our bodies as 'perceiving surface[s]' (Ahmed, 26) and instantiate our being in-the-world.

In 'Photojournalism - social aspects' (2003), Sontag shares with Ahmed an interest in 'the sociality of pain' (Ahmed, 28); both are concerned with the act of witnessing. In striking semblance with the ti…