1 | THE BODY IN CONTEMPORARY LITERATURE
Coordinated by: Laura Scarabelli (Università degli Studi di Milano, Italy) and Mónica Barrientos (Universidad Autónoma de Chile, Chile)
Body and dialectics of the visible and the invisible
Body, memory and representation
Metaphors of the sick body
Figures of bodies that do not matter
Contemporary literature actively intervenes in the reflection on the body and its multiple figurations and constructions: the most current narratives are populated by always excessive representations of the body, which exhibit its wounds and flaunt its weaknesses. These eccentric textualities contribute to reveal the multiple biopolitical marks that break the stability of the translucent imaginary of the present, an epiphenomenon of late capitalism and, at the same time, propose a profound revision of the categories that order our societies, disarticulating hierarchies and logics of power. This axis aims to study the forms and models of representation of erratic and unruly bodies that, with their uncomfortable presence, deconstruct the flat and transparent image of reality, revealing its multiple fissures and inaugurating a space of resistance and transformation.
2 | EMBODIED AUDIOVISUALS
Coordinated by: Mariana Baltar, (PPGCine-UFF, Brazil) and Catarina Andrade (PPGL-UFPE/Universidade Católica de Pernambuco, Brazil)
The politics of the body in the filmic body
Embodied experiences that stress the theories of the image and the look
Body, affection, performance and performativity
Colonial and decolonial bodies and imaginaries
Body genres and their politico-aesthetic relations
This thematic axis addresses contributions that focus on issues regarding bodies at screen and cinematic bodies as locus of political and aesthetic debates. In which capacity, the debate on embodiment, affect and embodied experiences raises distinctive questions to cinema and audiovisual field? How politics and aesthetic relate to one another in cinematographies or other audiovisual forms that place body and sensations as main strategy (correlations with theoretical approaches such as excess, body genres, performance and haptic regimes are stimulated)? In which ways, the body taken as methodological starting point and as arena for political agency, troubles narrative traditions, hegemonic ways of productions, of seeing and experiencing audiovisuals works. The proposals submitted to this thematic axe should be able to address critical debates that touches issues such as: the centrality of body, sensations and affect in contemporary context. In this sense, cinema and audiovisual field are sensitive answers that both destabilize and troubles colonial, racialized and cisheteronormative domains and knowledges.
3 | GENDER ECOLOGIES
Coordinated by: Ignacio Sánchez-Osores (University of Notre Dame, United States of America)
Plant studies, animal studies, new materialisms.
Ecofeminist pedagogies, queer-femme pedagogies.
Plant poetics, animal poetics, invertebrate poetics, aquatic poetics, landscape poetics.
In addressing the myriad relations between the human and the non-human, Donna Haraway (2008) uses the suggestive trope of the “dance of relations” to describe the complex trajectories, movements and choreographies that knot these “other” links. Using this kinesthetic trope, this axis proposes to examine the displacements, decentering and dancing constellations of the “gender ecologies” (Lettow and Nessel) that gather and explore different cultural productions.
In the face of the climate and environmental crisis, the rise of extractivist zones (Gómez-Barris) and the reconceptualizations between the human and the non-human, diverse cultural texts respond with particular and novel “dances of relations” to, in the first instance, bet on a shift of worn-out notions of patriarchal, colonial and anthropocentric origin; and then propose, from intersectional perspectives, new imaginary horizons and continuities between human bodies and other species linked by intimate gender interactions.
In short, this axis aims to gather a repertoire of political-aesthetic imaginations that question the representational, critical and performative status of the gender ecologies that beset our present.
4 | CORPOREALITY, HUMAN RIGHTS AND MEMORY
Coordinated by: Teresa Basile (Universidad Nacional de La Plata, Argentina) and Estefanía Di Meglio (Universidad Nacional de La Plata, Argentina)
Memory and Dictatorship in South America
Embodiment and terrorism
Representations of the body-victim and redeemed
What were the new bodies engendered by the machinery of State terrorism during the 1970s and 1980s in the Southern Cone? On the one hand, the figure of the disappeared interrogates and dissociates itself from the known images, establishing a bodiless corporeality that triggers the prosthesis of the ghost, the specters, the apparitions, the horrors, the zombies, etc. On the other hand, the appropriated body of the newborns that, subjected to the alienating and ominous discipline of their appropriators, goes through the complex process of disaffiliation and restitution. Likewise, the body sexualized by the male power of the repressors and subjected to practices of sexual terrorism in the Clandestine Centers of Detention, Torture and Extermination. And the reproductive body of the disappeared mothers forced to give birth in clandestine maternity wards and then murdered. The exiled body, expelled from its country, from its territory, is also a product of the dictatorship, as well as the tortured bodies, the imprisoned bodies, all of them victim-bodies, stripped of all rights, violated and vulnerable, exposed to the nude life.
We ask ourselves, then, what are the narratives and bodily fictions –in testimonies, in literature, in cinema, in photography, in theater, in poetry, in sculpture, in performance– that account for these disappeared, appropriated, violated, exiled, imprisoned, sexualized, tortured bodies? How does the body-victim speak? Which is the bodily, somatic, symptomatic language? While certain bodily representations address the victim-body, other perspectives –in a redemptive mode– seek to recover this dispossession of the body and endow it with presence, energy and performativity: how is this resurrected body made present, brought back to life (Nachleben)? How is the word/language given back to the resurrected body through prosopopoeia, photographic montage, epistolary archives, the objects that were its own?
5 | AFFECTIONS AND TRANSGRESSIONS OF THE BODY IN CONTEMPORARY ART
Coordinated by: Jessica Ragazzini (Université du Québec en Outaouais, Canada / Université Paris Nanterre, France)
Body and posthumanism
Body and technology
Body and ecology
Body and animality
Contemporary art is known for testing the limits of the body, both physical, conceptual and emotional. According to the perspective of Maurice Merleau-Ponty, the physical and sensitive limits of the body allow “être au monde”, to interact with our environment, while establishing a tangible border with what surrounds us. What happens when artists shake up corporeality to strive for fusion with “the other”? In this axis, the “other” can represent both the human and the non-human. In «Mille Plateaux», the philosophers Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari invited us to rethink corporeality by considering it as a moving and fluid state. What he calls “Le Corps sans organe” would envisage a disturbance of the human organism, a becoming-machine as much as a becoming-animal. By way of example, it is possible to mention the work “Let the horse live in me!” of Art Orienté Objet which consisted, among other things, of transfusing horse blood into the veins of the artist Marion Laval-Jeantet; this discursive performativity around biological and ethical limits also drew attention to the commonalities that unite humans and animals. The processes of hybridization of the body with new technologies as Stelarc, ORLAN or Moon Ribas do, present themselves as political manifestos which use technology for the improvement of the human condition. Beyond performance, Patricia Piccinini’s monstrous hyper-realistic sculptures and Unica Zürn’s drawn creatures deconstruct and reconstruct the body, provoking a sense of uncanny Freudian strangeness. Leading to aroused reactions ranging from admiration to repulsion, why is the affect of the spectators so jostled? How do the transgressions of the body make it possible to give flesh to social, political and cultural issues? In what ways do explorations around the body make it possible to address issues relating to the human psyche? What dialogues does art make possible between affections and transgressions of the body?
6 | POLITICS OF THE BODY IN CONTEMPORARY ACTIVISMS
Coordinated by: Rose de Melo Rocha (PUC-SP, Brazil) and Fernando Gonçalves (UERJ, Brazil)
Body, image and resistance
Body and political representativeness
Body and artivism
Body, digital activism and mediativism
Human and non-human rights and the environment
This axis addresses the body as a point of inflection and reflection in the context of contemporary activisms. We are interested here in the analysis and reflections on the production of body images as forms of resistance, as well as the struggles for political representativeness in the field of cultural, racial, gender and sexual identities in social and community movements. The axis also welcomes reflections on the construction of the political body and its performativity in the arts (artivism), on the uses and appropriations of technologies in digital spaces and on the struggles in the contexts of human and non-human rights and environmental activism.
7 | CORPOREALITY, SENSORIALITIES AND POLITICAL AFFECTS IN DIGITAL CULTURE
Coordinated by: Christine Mello (PUC-SP/FAPERJ/UERJ, Brazil) and Paula García (PUC-SP, Brazil /Marina Abramovic Institute, USA)
Embodiment and digital culture
Imaginaries of digital culture and subjectivation processes
Sensoriality and political affections
The political performativity of the body in virtual environments
The thematic axe Corporality, sensorialities and political affects in digital culture intends to reflect on the impacts of the inscriptions of sensorialities and their respective political affects through embodied experiences, present in the body in performance in virtual environments, in particular, in social networking platforms, naturally online. This axe aims to articulate both theoretically and empirically Imaginaries of digital culture and aspects of different communication, artistic, cultural and political contexts, taking into account the activation of subjectivation processes related to the various productions of embodied experiences that are established within racism, patriarchy, xenophoby and sexism.
8 | CORPOREALITY AND GENDER AND SEXUALITY POLICIES
Coordinated by: Francisco Hernandez Galvan (Benemérita Universidad Autónoma de Puebla, Mexico) and Martin De Mauro Rucovsky (Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina)
Feminist Specific Narratives
Accelerationism and Gender Cultural Studies
Political Ecology and Gender Studies
Posthuman, Shamanic, Cyborg, Latin American Literature
Ecocriticism, Geological Rotation and Queer Compost
Ancestries and Plural Ecologies
Inventing a universe is hard work. Thus begins Ursula K. Le Guin the prologue to her storybook «The Birthday of the World», and we would not agree more with her. We consider that the thousands of germs that promote the life of all these universes are only overlapping stories, fictional responses and dilations of inhabited temporalities, of times that are perfectly real. Universes anchored to another production grammar. «The universes of science fiction are only tiny fragments of worlds made of words, but still require much reflection» (Le Guin, 2001: 7). If there is energy required to invent the universe, another energy is needed to destroy it. To imagine its ruin, to investigate the possibilities of its melting.
Following this creative force, we want to place some apostrophes, erasures and limits to narration and world-formation. Expand the thresholds of the crowd, the powers, the common futures. Our devices are aesthetic. It’s literature, it’s film, it’s performance. We continue to bet on plastic art, on living art, on everything that is trapped in its conception. We need to archive them or exploit their conjunction. Rehearse dissident, feminist, commoner, peripheral futures. In that archipelago we call Latin American. Abya Yala.
If we understood correctly, futurability folds over the need to think power, circumscribe power and open possibilities -at least in the conception of «Bifo» Berardi (2017). That conjunction, then, enunciates acceleration, the unspeakable, experimentation: the inconceivable. There is no future without all of us. There is no coming without a dispute over the imaginaries of the future and emancipatory horizons. Our gaze is anticipatory, looking for a type of literary, artistic and cultural assemblages that conjure the limits of the futurability we want to inhabit and at the same time stage that open character, and multiple futurizations for conceptual imagination.
This panel constellates, deposits above all the cosmic mantle, a lot of cuts, expanded letters and gathers them to trace orientations, futuristic lines of thought. It is our collective need to reflect on the end. Investigate multiple projects about the death of utopia, unfinished and unfinished projects buried by defeat and the projective illusion of progress, feminist heterotopic sedimentations and sexogenic dissent, the ancestral temporalities prior to the modernizing advance, namely, political futurabilities around sexuality and desire. He exclaims about these projects to resituate their critical potential but without it being clear whether it is the near future that is advanced or is the multiple and plural past that returns.
But it also brings together the problems of the earth, of the soil, of the territorialized and the planetary. Of water, of the sea, of the polluted. Together with political ecologies, ecofeminist community activism, environmental spacing lines and dialogue with the various Latin American cultural narratives. We don’t need to ask ourselves about the end, about what kind of catastrophic narrative will govern; we want to question the apocalyptic, geo-terrestrial and climatic exhaustion narratives in composition with the ancestral dynamics, animisms, shamanic and indigenous perspectivisms, posthuman, cyborg or anti(or not)human figurations, take some steps forward and suggest panoramas, possible landscapes, decisable futures, catatonic looks.
9 | POLITICS OF THE BODY, PERFORMANCE AND ARCHIVE
Coordinated by: Fernando Degiovanni (The City University of New York, United States of America)
Activism and literate militancy
This axis is aimed to explore intellectual activity as a signifying practice that operates beyond written production. Its history can be traced in lecture tours, speeches at mass assemblies, participation in urban interventions and social gatherings (among many other spaces). It also raises questions different from those presupposed by the analysis of the intellectual as a producer of texts intended for reading. Using visual and textual documentation scattered in a multiplicity of past and present archives, this axis proposes the possibility of thinking about intellectual activity as a practice anchored in voice and gesture, and formulated for a seeing and hearing public. We invite researchers interested in approaching alternative corporeal and spatial forms of intellectual life, as well as in exploring marginalized and unknown figures who have made performance one of the axes of their relationship with their audience. In this way, we intend to contribute to the elaboration of alternative notions of the intellectual as well as to rethink the political and symbolic implications of its historical becoming.