“Berlant gives us something like a how-to guide for living in the impasse, that is, the affective and political conditions of our present.” – Michael Hardt
Co-presented with the CalArts Aesthetics and Politics Program
In the first of two talks, current CalArts Theorist in Residence Lauren Berlant addresses “humorlessness” as ontology, performance, and affect; and as threat and aspiration. She asks how the encounter with humorlessness structures the political scene and style of encounter, and how the encounter with it changes according to where people are in a relation of power. A companion piece, “Humorlessness/ Comedy,” will be presented two nights later, on February 3, at the West Hollywood Library. Berlant is the George M. Pullman Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago. Her most recent books are Cruel Optimism (2011); Desire/Love (2012); and with Lee Edelman, Sex, or the Unbearable (2014). Berlant’s earlier “National Sentimentality Trilogy” comprises The Anatomy of National Fantasy (1991), The Queen of America Goes to Washington City (1997) and The Female Complaint (2008).
G - General Audience
M - REDCAT Members
ST - Students
CA - CalArts Students/Faculty/Staff