On the Desire for the Political
Thursday, April 29, 2010 - 7:00pm
These days mass politics are emotional, exuding intensities that reveal desires for visceral immediacy to shape all kinds of encounter with power, even when it’s mass mediated or seems like a transaction that takes place over there, among elites.
“On the Desire for the Political” looks at some instances of contemporary art rooted in traditions of silent protest whose aim is to remobilize and redirect the normative noise that binds the public affectively to the political. Participants in contemporary political life witness this reticent aesthetic all the time, in genres of memorializing from self-immolation to the vigil: what will interest us here is what performances of withdrawal from citizenship’s presumptively rational political speech can reveal about the state of popular politics in the contemporary U.S.