We are glad to give notice of the conference The Master/s: On the Contemporary Structure of Power, which will take place on September 22nd-24th, Ljubljana, Cankarjev dom. The conference is organized by the Aufhebung – International Hegel Association, the Goethe-Institut Ljubljana, the Cankarjev dom Ljubljana, and the University of Ljubljana – Faculty of Arts, and it is part of the research projects Hegel and Shakespeare on the Contemporary Structures of Powers and Possibility of Idealism for the 21. Century.
Guests at the conference will include renowned international and Slovenian philosophers Frauke Berndt, Henrik Jøker Bjerre, Arthur Bradley, Andrew Cole, Mladen Dolar, Simon Hajdini, Peter Klepec, Bara Kolenc, Yuval Kremnitzer, Jamila Mascat, Gregor Moder, Anca Parvulescu, Frances Restuccia, Eric Santner, Aaron Schuster, Jure Simoniti, Goran Vranešević, and Slavoj Žižek.
Conversers will be Bara Kolenc, Gregor Moder, Urban Šrimpf, Goran Vranešević.
The question of the Master stretches back to times immemorial, to the very origins of human culture. It kept haunting our history throughout millennia, presenting ever new facets and enigmas. Why and how would someone acquire the superior status of a leader, a person in charge and in command, with the inscrutable aura of a Master, wielding the imperious power over people? And why would others submit to and accept the exceptional authority of the Master, comply with his commands, and acquiesce in their compliance?
The question is at the core of all political philosophy and more widely of a vast variety of reflections on the foundations of social domination, be it in the attempts to legitimize the power of some people over the others, be it in the attempts to put an end to it. The conference does not aim at addressing the vastness of these intricate questions, all of them with a very long and venerable history, engaging instead with the problem of the present-day figures of the Master. We want to explore in what ways these figures present a novelty in relation to tradition, recent and old, and what can be done to invent strategies to counteract them.
We want to explore in what ways these figures present a novelty in relation to tradition, recent and old, and what can be done to invent strategies to counteract them.
We are intrigued by contemporary phenomena like the obscenity of power and the theatricality of power, where it seems that the political domination depends on its public display, its representation in the media and its performance in front of the cameras, but in a very different sense that this could be said for the Monarch or for the totalitarian Leader. What are the prevailing forces of dominion today? How do they operate? How are they represented and what is their performative power? What are the novel forms of the master-slave dialectic in the interweaving of the digital and the physical and how do they affect the social and the intimate?Printable Version