The National Museum of Iceland
THE GRANT OF EXELENCE PROJECT MY FAVOURITE THINGS INVITES YOU TO ATTEND AN OPEN LECTURE
Lecture hall in The National Museum of Iceland March 21st, 2019, at 15:30
PROFESSOR AT JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY
"Out for a Walk”
"Out for a Walk” begins with two strolls: one by the 19th century naturalist Henry Thoreau, who finds himself inscribed by vegetal forms and powers; and one by a graphic line as it enlists the energies of a human hand to become a doodle. These two walks expose the radical entanglement of human and nonhuman activeness, and they call for a lexicon able to acknowledge such a trans-specied kind of agency. How to bespeak such joint efforts in ways that give the nonhuman its due? What grammar, syntax, and verbal forms best acknowledge the contributions of animal, vegetal, mineral, and atmospheric vitalities to one another? How to find a language sensitive to the way human writing is itself enabled and infused with nonhuman inscriptions?"
Jane Bennett is Andrew W. Mellon Professor of the Humanities at Johns Hopkins University, where she teaches political theory. Research areas include ecological philosophy, American political thought, political rhetoric and persuasion, and contemporary social theory. She has been a visiting scholar at the University of Copenhagen, and held fellowships at IKKM in Weimar, Germany; Oxford University (Keble College); Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities (University of London); and the Humanities Research Centre at Australian National University. Her recent essays have appeared in Grain/Vapor/Ray (Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, 2014), Evental Aesthetics (special issue on Vital Materialism). She is the author of Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things (Duke, 2010); The Enchantment of Modern Life (Princeton 2001); Thoreau's Nature (Rowman Littlefield, 1994), and Unthinking Faith and Enlightenment (NYU 1987). Her forthcoming book is on Walt Whitman.