Latest News

New Publication: “Belgium & the Conings case: Pandemic politics and extreme right terrorism”

© Kif Kif 2021

A new UrbTerr project publication has just been published. This longread, written in Dutch, re-spotlights the Conings case and Belgian pandemic politics, but does so by zooming in on the Flemish extreme right, processes of terrorist and extremist (non)-labeling, and some of the conspiracy theories that were circulating right after the announcement of Conings’ death.

The piece has been published by Kif Kif, and can be found here.

#publication #TheConversation #UrbTerr #extremism #pandemicpolitics

Geerts, Evelien. 2021. “België en de zaak Conings: pandemiepolitiek en extreemrechts terrorisme.” Kif Kif.

New Publication: “Jürgen Conings: the case of a Belgian soldier on the run shows how the pandemic collides with far-right extremism”

A new UrbTerr project publication on pandemic politics and Belgium’s far-right extremism in the context of the Jürgen Conings case has just been published by The Conversation.

© The Conversation 2021

The article addresses the Conings case – a Belgian soldier, currently wanted for threatening Belgium’s top virologist Marc Van Ranst and the illegal possession of weapons in a terrorist context. It moreover argues for a more situated analysis of Belgium’s far-right extremism by looking at its complex political climate. You can read the piece here.

#publication #TheConversation #UrbTerr #extremism #pandemicpolitics

The pandemic climate has proven to be an excellent breeding ground for extremists. It has provided them with an excuse to go after what they see as the “freedom-destroying” establishment.

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Geerts, Evelien. 2021. “Jürgen Conings: the case of a Belgian soldier on the run shows how the pandemic collides with far-right extremism.” The Conversation.

New Publication: “New materialism: A cartography

My piece on the various constellations of contemporary new materialist thought, written in Dutch for Wijsgerig Perspectief it out now. In this article, I explore the various differences between critical new materialisms, OOO, ANT, speculative realisms, and other related strands of thought, while delving into issues of power and the flat ontology phenomenon. The piece also includes the self-created cartography below, which is a shortened version of my digital critical cartography of new materialisms, which you can find here:

Buy and read the article here.

Since the arrival of Foucauldian post-structuralism — often put to use by feminist thinkers appreciating Michel Foucault’s “(le) pouvoir-savoir” or the intertwining of power and knowledge — new post-poststructuralist philosophies, spotlighting worldly phenomena and their entanglements, have made themselves known.

(…) This essay consists of a critical cartography that is based upon how various new materialist (sub)sets differ when it comes to their engagement with these current-day more-than-human crisis times, subject-object conceptualizations, and their (present or absent) focus on power.

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#publication #WijsgerigPerspectief #philosophy #newmaterialisms #OOO

Geerts, Evelien. 2021. “Nieuw materialisme: Een cartografie.” Wijsgerig Perspectief 61, n. 2, 34-41. 

From the archive: Video of (Bio)art & ecologies of non/living matters: A conversation between visual artist Emanuela Cusin and philosopher Marietta Radomska

The captioned video of the (Bio)art & ecologies of non/living matters event has now been uploaded to the UrbTerr’s Youtube page. You can check out the video here!

#fromthearchive #event #video #UrbTerr #posthumanisms #bioart


From the archive: “Performativity”

© New Materialism website 2021

In this almanac entry for the digital New Materialism Almanac (COST ACTION IS1307), I wrote about (agential realist interpretations of) performativity. The piece is digitally available here.

#fromthearchive #publication #newmaterialisms #almanac #performativity

For Barad, performativity is not only linked to the coming into being of the human subject and the (gendered) materialization of bodies, and the socio-political interpellation process that goes along with it (i.e., Butler’s more recent understanding of performativity as articulated in Bodies), but is about the processes of the materialization of “all bodies” and the “material-discursive practices” that engender differences between for example human and non-human bodies (Barad 2003, 810). And the matter that is central to these processes of materialization for Barad is much less passive than Foucault and Butler have purported it to be.

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Geerts, Evelien. 2016. “Performativity” . New Materialism Almanac.

New notification: “Humanities for the Future: A New European Agenda” report

© Youth Forum on the Future of the Humanities 2021

The Youth Forum on the Future of the Humanities’ report titled “Humanities for the Future: A New European Agenda” has now been released. The report itself was co-written by Humanities scholars in the European Union in the context of the European Humanities Conference 2021.

Check out the document here.

#humanities #EU #futureofthehumanities


New publication: Being Haunted by—and Reorienting toward—What ‘Matters’ in Times of (the COVID-19) Crisis: A Critical Pedagogical Cartography of Response-ability

© Routledge 2021

The Higher Higher Education Hauntologies edited volume is out now and can be accessed here. My essay, titled “Being Haunted by—and Reorienting toward—What ‘Matters’ in Times of (the COVID-19) Crisis: A Critical Pedagogical Cartography of Response-ability” and of which an AM is available here and an institutional copy is available here, presents a critical cartography of critical pedagogies & new materialist and posthumanist philosophies of response-ability in times of pandemic crisis; a crisis that not only demands a pedagogical but also ethico-political reorientation toward the hauntological powers of past-present-future injustices, the thick material present, and a more response-able engagement with the world.

While the whole world is being haunted by moments of complete disorientation caused by COVID-19—or, differently phrased, the collapsing of our onto-epistemological frames of existential sense-making, leading ‘us,’ humans, to question our presumed unrivaled place (with)in an-always-already-more-than-human spacetime, and, hopefully, reorient ourselves—the (in)direct encounters between this tiny uncanny virus and its potential hosts, have been felt far less equally. The question that comes to mind here is what we could learn from this global pandemic if we were to connect this event to the critical pedagogical and ethico-political.

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#publication #hauntology #newmaterialisms #criticalpedagogies #response-ability

Geerts, Evelien. 2021. “Being Haunted by—and Reorienting toward—What ‘Matters’ in Times of (the COVID-19) Crisis: A Critical Pedagogical Cartography of Response-ability.” In: Higher Education Hauntologies: Living with Ghosts for a Justice-to-come, 155-169. Edited By Vivienne Bozalek, Michalinos Zembylas, Siddique Motala, Dorothee Holscher. Routledge.

New upcoming event: “(Bio)art & ecologies of non/living matters: A conversation between visual artist Emanuela Cusin and philosopher Marietta Radomska”

Check out the flyer below for more information about an upcoming research seminar that is being organized in the context of the Urban Terrorism in Europe (2004-19): Remembering, Imagining, and Anticipating Violence project at the University of Birmingham. During this research seminar, visual artist Emanuela Cusin and philosopher Dr Marietta Radomska will present their artistic and philosophical engagements with the matter(s)—and materialisation—of (bio)art and ecologies of the non/living. These presentations are then followed up by what surely will be a thought-provoking discussion. More information and registration details can be found here.

#event #UrbanTerrorism #newmaterialisms #bioart


New call for papers:
Dis/abling Gender

© Tijdschrift voor Genderstudies 2021

The call for papers for a new special issue of Tijdschrift voor Genderstudies/Journal of Gender Studies is now online. You can read the full call for papers here. Manuscripts that focus on critical disability studies & posthumanist, new materialist, and affect theoretical approaches are particularly welcome. Abstracts should be sent in by the 1st of May 2021, and can be written in either English and Dutch.

#callforpapers #genderstudies #criticaldisabilitystudies


New upcoming event: Digital panel Radicaal-rechtse Seks

© EPO & Katrien Jacobs 2021

I will be joining a panel of speakers during the digital book launch of Katrien Jacobs’ Radicaal-rechtse Seks, which has recently been published by EPO. The event will be held in Dutch on the 27th of March 2021. You can find more information here.

#event #KatrienJacobs #feminism #theradicalright


New publication: Posthumanities Hub blog essay

© The Posthumanities Hub website 2021

The Posthumanities Hub just started its blog series and I had the honor to write the first blog essay, titled “The more-than-human materializations of violence, remembrance, and times of crisis”. This essay contextualizes my current research project a bit more as a Research Fellow of the Urban Terrorism ERC project at the University of Birmingham and a Posthumanities Hub affiliated researcher. You can read the piece here.

Pushing for an alternative critical new materialist reading of urban (counter)terrorism as a material-semiotic phenomenon with affective, haunting qualities—qualities that by the way cannot be completely captured by theories that either solely center the lived experience of the human subject or stick to representationalist framings that continuously rip the knower, phenomenon-to-be-discovered, and knowledge produced apart—allows us to theorize something that already partially escapes our often too rigid regimes and strictly demarcated imaginaries of intelligibility. A more-than-representationalistmore-than-human reading furthermore provides us with the opportunity to better map the affect-laden lived experiences, intricate networks of power, inequalities, and exclusions, and legal-political structures that those (in)directly involved in (counter)terrorism are inhabiting and impacted by.

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#publication #posthumanism #terrorism #PosthumanitiesHub

Geerts, Evelien (2021). “The more-than-human materializations of violence, remembrance, and times of crisis.” The Posthumanities Hub blog series.

New special issue & publications: “Pedagogies in the Wild – Entanglements between Deleuzoguattarian Philosophy and the New Materialisms” (Matter)

© Matter website 2021

The special issue Delphi Carstens and I curated for Matter: Journal of New Materialist Research has just been released! You can find the TOC and full issue here. We are delighted to have been able to include contributions by Francisco B. Trento, Elina Oinas, Andy Broadey, Susan O. Cannon & Maureen A. Flint, Jacqueline V. Moulton, Raewyn Martyn, jan jagodzinski, Iris van der Tuin, Sam Skinner, Chantelle Gray & Aragorn Eloff, Katie Strom & Tammy Mills.

Here is a short excerpt from the special issue’s editorial, which you can download here.

Whether we are said to be living in the Anthropocene, the Capitalocene, or are witnessing the start of the Chthulucene, as feminist science studies scholar Donna J. Haraway (2016) would describe the current post-anthropocentric era, there is a demonstratable need for affective, entangled, transversal forms of thinking-doing today. Writing this editorial almost a year after the COVID-19 pandemic erupted, and that as inhabitants of Belgium and South Africa—countries with complex ongoing capitalist-colonial legacies, socio-political presents, and heavily but also differently hit by said pandemic—we more than ever feel that these are times of entwined crisis, chaos, and hardship, overflowing with cravings for pedagogical-philosophical responses that are affirmative, productive, and future-oriented. Reactions that are moreover part theory, part praxis, counter the nihilistic, and are future-focused while still grounded in the present, as to not defer responsibilities to future times.

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#publication #newmaterialisms #Deleuze&Guattari #criticalpedagogies #Matter

Geerts, Evelien & Carstens, Delphi (2021). “Pedagogies in the Wild – Entanglements between Deleuzoguattarian Philosophy and the New Materialisms”, special issue of Matter: Journal of New Materialist Research 2 (2021) (1).

New publication: Review essay (Redescriptions)

© Redescriptions website 2020

My review essay of Miri Rozmarin’s thought-provoking Vulnerable Futures, Transformative Pasts: On Vulnerability, Temporality, and Ethics (2017) just got published in Redescriptions. The special issue (by Mónica Cano Abadía & Tuija Pulkkinen) is worth checking out as well.

#publication #feministphilosophy #vulnerability #Redescriptions

Geerts, Evelien. 2020. “Book Review: Vulnerable Futures, Transformative Pasts: On Vulnerability, Temporality, and Ethics by Miri Rozmarin, Peter Lang, 2017, 194 Pages. ISBN 978-1-78707-392-0 (epub) (also Available in Print, Epdf and Mobi)”. Redescriptions: Political Thought, Conceptual History and Feminist Theory 23 (2): 165–69.

From the archive: “Diffraction & Reading Diffractively”

© New Materialism website 2020

In this almanac entry for the digital New Materialism Almanac (COST ACTION IS1307) , Iris van der Tuin and I sketched a cartographical map of diffraction as a philosophical idea and methodology. The piece is digitally available here, and has been republished as an edited version as part of Matter‘s special issue on Pedagogies in the Wild, which you can find here.

#fromthearchive #publication #newmaterialisms #almanac #diffraction

Thinking diffractively steps out of the phallogocentric, reflective logics of producing the Same all over again by acknowledging the differences that exist, while at the same time pointing at where the problematic reductions and assimilations of difference have taken place. Haraway in Modest_Witness@Second_Millenium (1997) later on expands on this new form of optics and way of thinking by using diffraction as “an optical metaphor:” Diffraction here is even more contrasted with the traditional way of producing (scientific) knowledge, namely “[r]eflexivity.” Such a practice “only displaces the same elsewhere,” according to Haraway, and creates oppositional distinctions between the real and the figural, whereas diffraction – now reformulated as seeing and thinking diffractively – is all about making “a difference in the world” by paying attention to “the interference patterns on the recording films of our lives and bodies” (ibid., p. 16). 

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Geerts, Evelien & van der Tuin, Iris. 2016. “Diffraction & Reading Diffractively” . New Materialism Almanac.

From the archive: “Zonder de Ander, ook geen Zelf (Without the Other, no Self).”

© Wijsgerig Perspectief 2019

In this article (written in Dutch) for Wijsgerig Perspectief on identity, identity politics, and the sometimes complex relation between Self/Other, I trace the genealogy of the various philosophical phases in identity politics, to eventually bring intersectional and new materialist interference thinking into conversation with one another. The piece is digitally available here.

#publication #Filosofiemagazine #philosophy #newmaterialisms #alterity

Geerts, Evelien. 2019. “Zonder de Ander, ook geen Zelf (Without the Other, no Self).” (in Dutch). Wijsgerig Perspectief 59 (2019) 1: 14-24

New event: A Critical Cartography of New Materialist Constellations & Interventions in Times of Terror(ism). November 5, 2020. The Posthumanities Hub Seminar Series.

© The Posthumanities Hub 2020

I am honored to have been invited by the Posthumanities Hub to give a digital seminar on critical new materialisms, crisis & terror(ism). You can find more details here & register for the seminar on November 5, 2020 (13-15hrs CEST) by sending an email to the.posthumanities.hub@gmail.com by November 3, 2020 the latest.

#event #thePosthumanitiesHub #criticaltheory #newmaterialisms #terror(ism)


New call for papers: Gender, Sexuality, and Embodiment in Digital Spheres: Connecting Intersectionality and Digitality

© Journal of Digital Social Research 2020

My colleagues Ladan Rahbari (University of Amsterdam), Sara De Vuyst (Ghent University) and I just released a call for papers for a special issue of the Journal of Digital Social Research on Gender, Sexuality, and Embodiment in Digital Spheres: Connecting Intersectionality and Digitality. You can find the (now closed) cfp as a PDF here. There is plenty of room for exploring posthumanist, affect and new materialist analyses & the critical pedagogical! Do spread the word!

#callforpapers #digital #journalofdigitalsocialresearch #criticaltheory #newmaterialisms


From the archive: Public philosophy lecture on Donna Haraway’s cyborgian feminism

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© Felix & Sofie logo 2019

My public philosophy lecture on Donna Haraway’s cyborgian feminism (in Dutch) on invitation by the public philosophy group Felix en Sofie at Perdu in Amsterdam (2019) is now accessible via Soundcloud. With this lecture, I addressed some of the basic tenets of Haraway’s work, and her critical situated knowledges politico-epistemology in particular, while focusing on the role of figurations, such as the cyborg, in her overall-critical new materialisms-anticipating-oeuvre. 

#lecture #Haraway #newmaterialisms #FelixenSofie

 Geerts, Evelien. 2019. “Donna Haraway’s cyborgian eco-feminism: A critical new materialist perspective” (in Dutch). Felix & Sofie event on the cyber philosophy of Haraway. Perdu. Amsterdam (NL)

New podcast: The Wellness Formula Sunday Service: on the work of Karen Barad. With Candice Jacobs

Podcast pic
© Candice Jacobs; Soundcloud page for the Wellness Formula project 2020

UK artist Candice Jacobs recently invited me to participate in her Wellness Formula podcast series to talk about the ethico-politics behind new materialisms and Karen Barad’s agential realist work. You can find the postcast here.

#podcast #newmaterialisms #diffraction #CandiceJacobs

Geerts, Evelien & Candice Jacobs, 2020. The Wellness Formula Sunday Service: on the work of Karen Barad. Podcast. Part of The Wednesday Wellness Formula installation by artist Candice Jacobs. Five Years Gallery London (UK)

New publication: “Ethico-onto-epistemology” (Philosophy Today)

philtoday
© Philosophy Today 2019

I recently published a co-written piece in Philosophy Today-the whole special issue, titled “New Concepts for Materialism,” is now fully available online (open access!). To view this special issue, click here. The article, “Ethico-onto-epistemology,” which I co-wrote with Delphi Carstens (University of the Western Cape), argues for a transversal posthumanities-based pedagogy, rooted in an attentive ethico-onto-epistemology, and does so by reading the schizoanalytical praxes of Deleuzoguattarian theory alongside the work of various feminist new materialist scholars.

#publication #ethicoontoepistemology #newmaterialisms #philosophytoday

In the networked media-drenched world of semiological, chemical, and neuroaffective capitalism “attention has become the most highly prized commodity,” writes Steve Goodman (2010: 194), reiterating the Deleuzoguattarian call to work towards seizing back imagination and affect from destructive systems of capitalist modeling. The schizophrenic double-pull of capitalist relations ensures that while it frees or deterritorializes us, it simultaneously reterritorializes us in a culture of “machinic enslavement” (Deleuze and Guattari 1988: 457). In higher education systems around the world, machinic enslavement takes the form of a neoliberal profit-based logic (which has dealt particularly heavy blows to the Humanities and Liberal Arts-related academic disciplines—see, for example, Fisher 2009; Braidotti 2013).

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Geerts, Evelien & Delphi Carstens. 2019. “Ethico-Onto-Epistemology.” Philosophy Today. Special issue ‘Materialist Concepts.’ 63 (4): 915-925.

From the archive: “Re-vitalizing the American Feminist-Philosophical Classroom: Transformative Academic Experimentations with Diffractive Pedagogies” (Posthumanism and Higher Education)

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Book cover

In April 2019, I published a piece on posthumanist new materialist pedagogies, and my experiments with diffractive pedagogical tools in particular. This chapter furthermore touches upon the damaging impact of neoliberal reason on institutions of higher education, and my efforts as a teacher to help turn things around by re-vitalizing the classroom. After a critique of current neoliberal ‘borderline times’, I take the reader on a journey of diffractive re-imaginings in which I share some of my experiences of co-learning with undergraduates in an American feminist-philosophical classroom. My central argument is that the neoliberalism-induced crisis in education can be affirmatively counteracted through experimentations with various posthuman and new materialist theories, and the Harawayan-Baradian methodology of diffraction in particular.

Feel free to buy the piece here & get the book, edited by Carol A. Taylor and Annouchka Bayley, here.

#publication #fromthearchive #newmaterialisms #criticalpedagogy #posthumanpedagogy

Explicit feminist new materialist pedagogies, such as the aforementioned diffractive pedagogical strategies and principles, rise up from within the classroom, and materialize themselves in entanglement with the physicality of the classroom, the socio-cultural capital that is (re-)produced and/or disrupted, and the co learners (students-and-teacher) participating in the course. The syllabus and midterm project are, in my view, particularly important diffractive pedagogical approaches. They both pull the teacher and students out of their self-reflexive minds and neoliberal-propelled hyper individualized learning attitudes and, instead, accentuate the flows, passions, affects and intensities between them as co-learners. Furthermore, they express the new materialist idea that the teacher and the student, plus the teaching apparatuses and environment, are all interconnectedly involved (and transformed) when intra-actively collaborating with one another in the classroom.

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Geerts, Evelien. 2019. “Re-vitalizing the American feminist-philosophical classroom. Transformative academic experimentations with diffractive pedagogical tools.” In Posthumanism and Higher Education: Reimagining Pedagogy, Practice and Research. Edited by Carol A. Taylor & Annouchka Bayley, 123-140. Palgrave Macmillan.

From the archive: “Materialist Philosophies Grounded in the Here And Now: Critical New Materialist Constellations & Interventions in Times Of Terror(ism)” (UC Santa Cruz dissertation)

diss pic
Dissertation cover

In December 2019, I successfully defended my doctoral dissertation at UC Santa Cruz. For those that are interested, check out the longer abstract here.

This dissertation, located at the crossroads of Continental political philosophy, feminist theory, critical theory, intellectual history, and cultural studies, provides a critical cartography of contemporary new materialist thought in its various constellations and assemblages, while using diffractive theorizing to examine two Continental terror(ist) events. It is argued that such a critical cartography is not only a novel but also much needed undertaking, as we, more than almost two decades after the Habermas-Derrida dialogues on terror(ism), are in need of a Zeitgeist-adjusted conceptual framework, and, thus, a revitalization of philosophizing as such, that could lead to an analysis of the complex ontological, epistemological, and eco-ethico-political entangled aspects of global crises, and, specifically, terrorist events, the actual terror they produce, and the bio-/necropolitical repercussions they often engender.

#publication #fromthearchive #dissertation #newmaterialisms #philosophy #criticaltheory

It is clear that Haraway’s philosophy differs significantly from idealistic modern philosophical models. Rather than philosophizing on top of fluffy clouds or within the strict confines of the academic ivory tower, Haraway brings things back down to earth and problematizes the philosophical distinctions between theory and praxis, subject and object, and transcendence and immanence—moves that could almost be considered Deleuzian in nature. Seen from the perspective of Haraway’s situated knowledges, we need to act in the immanent here and now, cultivate an “eco-ethico-political” awareness—as I would like to call it—and create some “serious fuss”.

This position is shared by many contemporary critical new materialists, who are interested in various urgent contemporary issues and their impact, such as the Anthropocene and its environmental crises, the ongoing effects of (neo)colonialism, the global rise of neofascism, the right-wing recuperation of recognition-based identity politics and rights, and the (oftentimes literally annihilating) toxicity of extractive neoliberal capitalism. One particular urgent issue that seems central to these critical new materialisms relates to Butler’s new materialist-sounding question of why certain bodies—and thus, embodied subjects—come to matter more than others. In rethinking perennial philosophical debates—for example those regarding subjectivity, agency, and what it means to be assigned the label of “human-enough”—many of today’s critical new materialist thinkers focus on how certain material forms and manifestations of embodied being are considered culturally illegible, non-conforming, different from, commodifiable, and often exploitable and annihilable. In a world that appears to be invested in promoting a global lethargic attitude, contemporary (critical) new materialist thought could make a real difference by cultivating an affirmative eco-ethico-political attentiveness to the world.

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Geerts, Evelien. 2019. “Materialist Philosophies Grounded in the Here And Now: Critical New Materialist Constellations & Interventions in Times Of Terror(ism).” Santa Cruz, CA: University of California, Santa Cruz. Unpublished dissertation manuscript.