Jennifer Doyle
Et Tu: Truth Telling Between Women

In his lectures on truth-telling and government, Michel Foucault uses the term alethurgy to name “the set of verbal procedures by which one brings to light that which is laid down as true as opposed to the false, hidden, inexpressible, unforeseen or forgotten”. He offers the following axiom: “there is no exercise of power without something like an alethurgy.” In this talk, centered on truth-telling between women in Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels, I take up alethurgy’s shadows — those zones marked by the systems which reproduce power and authority as hidden, inexpressible and forgotten.

Jennifer Doyle is an English professor at UC Riverside. Currently, Jennifer Doyle is working on a collection of essays on art and sport. She is also writing about paranoia, harassment and the workplace.

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Jennifer Hirsch
Intersections of Power: Sexual Assault, Public Health, and the Making of Sexual Citizens

The fear of campus sexual assault has become an inextricable part of the college experience. Research has shown that by the time they graduate, as many as one in three women and almost one in six men will have been sexually assaulted. But why is sexual assault such a common feature of college life? And what can be done to prevent it? Drawing on the Sexual Health Initiative to Foster Transformation (SHIFT) at Columbia University, the most comprehensive study of sexual assault on a campus to date, Jennifer S. Hirsch and Shamus Khan present an entirely new framework that emphasizes sexual assault’s social roots― transcending current debates about consent, predators in a “hunting ground,” and the dangers of hooking up.

Jennifer Hirsch is Professor, Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, at Columbia University. Hirsch’s research spans five intertwined domains: the anthropology of love; gender, sexuality and migration; sexual, reproductive and HIV risk practices; social scientific research on sexual assault and undergraduate well-being, and the intersections between anthropology and public health.

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Melinda Cooper
Capitalism and the Question of Geneaology

In this talk, Melinda Cooper asks why periods of capitalist breakdown are so often experienced as crises of reproduction and why the imagined solutions to such crises so predictably involve a return to reproductive order, with its attendant hierarchies of gender and race. The paper casts a critical eye on the role played by “reproduction” in Marxist feminist and anti-racist thought, arguing that the concept too often performs foundational and restorative work of its own. Professor Cooper begins by problematizing the role of ‘reproduction’ in Marx’s theory of capitalism, arguing that while Marx in volume 1 of Capital appeared to neglect or marginalize the role of women’s reproductive labour, he in fact made it foundational to the labour theory of value.

Melinda Cooper is Associate Professor of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Sydney. Cooper’s research focuses on the broad areas of social studies of finance, neoliberalism and new social conservatisms. Her monograph ‘Family Values: Between Neoliberalism and the New Social Conservatism’, was published in Zone Book’s Near Futures series in 2017. She is currently working on two research projects. The first is an ARC-funded investigation into the politics of public debt with a particular focus on Virginia school public choice theory and supply-side economics. The second project focuses on the economic politics of the far-right.

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