Monthly Archives: June 2018

“Critique of Violence Now. From Thinking to Acting Against Violence” with Judith Butler

The CAS SEE 2018 Summer School “Critique of Violence Now. From Thinking to Acting Against Violence” (June 18 – 22, 2018) opened with at inaugural lecture by Judith Butler, entitled “Interpreting Non-Violence”. The event took place at the Croatian National Theater “Ivan pl. Zajc” in Rijeka on Monday, June 18th 2018. During the lecture Butler posed a question: who is the “we” that gathered at this occasion? Whoever we were, she said, we are all different, and conflict, is surely already among us. The challenge is to live with the conflict without (any) violence.

Judith Butler, Maxine Elliot Professor at the University of California, Berkeley, reminded us how our society stems from a powerful foundational fiction that is based on a conception of the human as masculine, self-sufficient, adult individual. This fiction inaugurates a societal structure that sustains ideas of individualism. But, what would happen if we tried another story?

We are all born into a condition of radical interdependency. Judith Butler advocated for changing our focus on interdependency against the self-sufficiency fantasy that is deeply rooted in our societies. Coming to the realization of our mutual interdependency is the condition of equality that can lead towards the understanding of our global obligations (toward our fellow humans, other animals, other living processes, and the environment). Butler argued against the mechanisms that cause that some lives are more grievable than others and some lives are more precarious than others. This is why an ethics of non-violence has to do with an equal distribution of the conditions of livability. In her final words, she concluded that arguing for non-violence is usually regarded as unrealistic, but maybe those who claim this are too enamored with reality.

On Tuesday 19th 2018, the City of Rijeka Town Hall hosted the public debate “Political Violence: is counterstrike possible?”, moderated by Manuela Bojadžijev (Humboldt University). In this debate, Donatella della Porta (Scuola Normale Superiore, Firenze) argued for the need of analyzing violence at different levels: macro (economic injustice and ethnic discrimination), meso (incapsulation of ideology), and micro (through acts of intolerant identities). Peter Fenves (Northwestern University) used Immanuel Kant’s fantasy of perpetual peace to argue that we do not have a fantasy of the state that can lead towards a theory of right. Do we, then, need new fantasies? Also, he presented Walter Benjamin’s idea of the connection between the state and criminality: criminality is an alibi to the State foundation – all States are organized violent organizations, and violent syndicates have pretensions of taking over the State.

Marc Crepon (Ecole Normale Superiore, Paris) added that there is a murderous consent as a dimension to our belonging to this world. Ignorance is also a part of murderous consent to violence and we need legal action of lawmakers to withhold certain forms of violence. Child labour, slavery, political violence, death penalty, domestic violence/masculine domination, are examples of violences that have to be tackled through legal actions. The media theorist Astrid Deuber-Mankowsky (Ruhr University Bochum) used the example of the Counter-Strike videogame to reflect on the politics of the game against terrorism.

Judith Butler reflected on the title of the debate: Is counterstrike possible? What is a strike? Is it violent or non-violent, or is it perhaps both? Is a non-violent counter-strike possible? We often think about violence as a physical blow, but is it the case for political violence? Political violence seems to act at the level of the state (police, army, prisons), of the violent laws (permitting genocide or femicide), of institutions (abandoning the migrants, for example). States also fail at taking political stances against these violences. And this, she argued, is not a physical blow, but it is violence. This passive way of failing to provide sanctuary fosters particular ways of circulating violence. In her final words, Manuela Bojadzijev claimed that nowadays it is more than ever necessary that institutions take an affirmative stance by pronouncing themselves as sanctuaries for migrants and for marginalized people. This positive act of taking positions in favor of human rights can maybe become the affirmative counterstrike that helps us face contemporary violences.

On Wednesday afternoon, June 21th, the Summer School rendered a tribute to Saba Mahmood, Professor of Anthropology at the University of California at Berkeley who passed away on March 10th, 2018. This tribute took form of a round table, moderated by Sanja Bojanić (UNIRI CAS SEE/Academy for Applied Arts), with participation by Judith Butler, Rebeka Anić (Institute of Social Sciences Ivo Pilar – Center Split), Zilka Spahić Šiljak (Standford University/TPO Foundation Sarajevo), Sanja Pontonjak, (University of Zagreb), Adriana Zaharijević (IFDT University of Belgrade), and Senka Božić (University of Zadar). Together, they reflected on Mahmood’s important contribution to contemporary debates on secularism, feminism, ethics and politics, with viewpoints that contested Western ideas on pious Muslim women.

For Saba Mahmood, secularism can be an instrument for intolerance and leads towards conflict because of its own ambiguity: it advocates equality while imposing inequalities and producing minorities. In this sense, the participants of the table deliberated on the features of a state that considers itself as secular, specifically reflecting on the Croatian context.

Regarding feminism, there was an interesting reflection on the relationship between secular and religious feminisms. It was stated that an entirely secular (or religious) feminism would be provincial; thus, it would be wise to overcome the secularism/religion divide in order to escape the reactive cycle that is often established and to work towards a cooperation between secular and religious feminisms.

Summer school organizers: University of Rijeka, Center for Advanced Studies Southeast Europe (UNIRI CAS SEE), Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory (University of Belgrade).

Partners: Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Zagreb, HNK Ivan pl. Zajc, Erste Stiftung, European Fund for the Balkans, Institut Francais Croatia, Consulato generale d’Italia – Fiume, Goethe Institute Zagreb, Art-kino Croatia and the City of Rijeka.

The 2018 Summer School program is part of the “Kitchen” and “Seasons of Power” Flagships of the project “Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture.”

"Non-violent resistance works." A Talk Europe! interview with Judith Butler

Talk Europe!Is non-violent resistance able to end aggression and wars? And are there times when violence is, in fact, necessary? Judith Butler believes that non-violent resistance can be a strong and forceful instrument to undermine sources of state power and bring about change.Special thanks goes to the Center for Advanced Studies – South East Europe for making this interview possible. #cassee #uniri

Objavljuje ERSTE Foundation u Srijeda, 29. kolovoza 2018.

The “Non-violent resistance works.” A Talk Europe! interview with Prof. Judith Butler, brought to us by ERSTE Foundation at the UNIRI CAS SEE in June 2018.

Fashion Week Spring 2018 – Food: Policies & Innovations

Fashion Week Spring 2018 – Food: Policies & Innovations gathered, for the first time in Croatia, the representatives of the European parliament, Croatian government, the civil sector, scientific community, media, architecture and activism in a two-day discussion on the growing economic, ecological, social and urban problem of Europe – food waste, donation and production. Organizers of the conference are European Capital of Culture Rijeka 2020, Center for Culture of Dialogue (CeKaDe), Food Network and CAS SEE.

The problem of rising food waste and insufficient food donations entered the Croatian media space with the removal of VAT on food donations in 2015. However, the change in the state of affairs has not been substantial enough.

Among the numerous conclusions of this spring’s Fashion Week are also the following:

  • It is necessary to establish a cooperation between civil society organizations and state entities for the purposes of dismantling legislative, logistical and administrative problems with regards to food donating
  • It is necessary to push for long-term education of donors and communication among intermediaries with regards to food donation and food waste, but also for possibilities of upgrading their operations
  • It is necessary to reduce food waste at every phase in the food distribution chain
  • It is necessary to educate citizens on the imprecision of “best before” signs on food and push for governmental responsibility to offer recommendations as to how long after the “best before” date can the food be regarded as available for consumption
  • It is advisable to create bold plans for urban food production in order to allow for the production of sufficient amount of quality food for the needs of the citizens (and Rijeka’s abandoned port areas offer a compelling site for reinvention for such purposes)

The fourth ICCTP Conference “The Critique of Violence Now”

We are pleased to announce the fourth conference of the International Consortium of Critical Theory Programs (ICCTP) to be held at Rijeka, Croatia on June 16-19, 2018 on the topic of “The Critique of Violence Now”. The conference will take place at the Center for Advanced Studies – South East Europe, University of Rijeka, and will be sponsored in conjunction with the Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade, Serbia.

The Consortium is jointly housed at the University of California, Berkeley and Northwestern University with support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The task of the Consortium is to establish an active network of programs, projects, centers and institutes that will expand the global reach and form of critical theory for our time. The Consortium seeks to document, connect, and further the new and varied forms that critical theory has assumed in light of contemporary global challenges, including economic and political challenges to the university as an institution charged with the task of safeguarding and promoting critical thought.

The Consortium is meant to open new institutional links, overcome forms of hemispheric disconnection, and to pursue collaborative forms of interdisciplinary knowledge, guided by questions such as these: What are the current historical and global conditions in which the value of critical thought is challenged? How do we best describe and evaluate the prevailing forms of global power in their regional specificity that shape and constrain our intellectual life as it crosses academic and popular spheres, and how can critical thought rise to the challenge of these new global challenges through effective and thoughtful political engagement? By now, three conferences have been held, in Bologna, São Paulo and Johannesburg, on the topics of the critical tasks of university, the ends of democracy and reflections on memory and political time.

The issue of violence will be the focus of the fourth ICCTP conference, framed by the question, “what is a critique of violence for the present?” Can we have develop a global notion of “critique” without a “critique of violence”? Walter Benjamin asked this question in the early 1920s and he offered his own account of legal violence. Many of the traditional debates about violence and non-violence presumed a common understanding of both terms: we were assumed to know how best to identify violence and how to go about justifying or opposing its use. What challenge does the idea of “legal violence” pose to those traditional debates? And what forms does “legal violence” take now? What is the relation between spectacles of massacre, for instance, and those forms of legal violence, including administrative violence: how are they related, and how are they identified?  Does it matter how we understand regional violence (and how we designate regions) when we seek to answer this question? In addressing the topic “the critique of violence now,” we will be focusing in this meeting on the question of how we might re-appropriate Walter Benjamin’s influential and controversial essay “Critique of Violence” (Zur Kritik der Gewalt) in the context of our present political terrain.

The participants of the fourth conference of the ICCTP, The Critique of Violence Now, are: Petar Bojanić (IFDT/CAS), Judith Butler (UC Berkeley), Marc Crépon (ENS), Astrid Deuber-Mankowsky (Ruhr-Universität Bochum), Başak Ertür (Birkbeck College London), Peter Fenves (Northwestern University), Anne-Lise François (UC Berkeley), Dario Gentili (Roma Tre), Julia Ng (Goldsmiths), Pablo Oyarzún (Universidad de Chile), Massimo Palma (Suor Orsola Napoli), Michelle Ty (Clemson University).

The ICCTP conference will take place in tandem with the Summer School Critique of Violence Now: From Thinking to Acting against Violence (June 18-22).

Conveners

Judith Butler
Principal Investigator, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Grant for an International Consortium of Critical Theory Programs
University of California, Berkeley

Petar Bojanić
Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade
Center for Advanced Studies Southeast Europe, University of Rijeka

Sanja Milutinović Bojanić
Academy of Applied Arts
Center for Advanced Studies Southeast Europe, University of Rijeka

Gazela Pudar Draško
Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade

Adriana Zaharijević
Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade

THE CRITIQUE OF VIOLENCE NOW
June 16-19, 2018

June 16th

5-7 PM

Planning meeting, discussion of existing and future projects.

(Judith Butler, Petar Bojanić)

June 17th

9.30 AM-12.30 PM

Opening paragraph on law and justice, focusing on the means/ends distinction, explicating the meaning of critique for this essay (Peter Fenves)

Paragraphs 2-3: The problem of natural law (Massimo Palma)

Paragraphs 4-6:  “The question of the justification of certain means that constitute violence”: the distinction between legitimate and illegitimate violence; the introduction of legal violence as a problem; violence of the law and violence outside the law (Julia Ng)

2-5 PM

Paragraphs 7-8: Introduction of class struggle and the general strike, its relation to “pure means” and to non-violence; its relation to military law; the introduction to law-making in relation to Sorel’s Reflections on Violence (Marc Crépon)

Paragraphs 9-11: The police, its ghostly presence; transition to the non-contractual character of non-violent resolution, its relation to language and understanding; the relation between parliamentary power and violence; the non-violence as “unalloyed means” or “pure means” (Dario GentiliBaşak Ertür)

June 18th

9.30 AM-12.30 PM

Paragraphs 12-13: Non-violent resolution of conflict; techniques of civil agreement; the prohibition of fraud, “a policy of pure means,” the general strike (Anne-Lise François)

Paragraphs 14-17: Violence imposed by fate, the nonmediate function of violence, transition to mythic violence and the unwritten law and its relation to retribution; fate and the introduction of the mythical; the distinction between mythical and divine violence, the examples of Niobe and Korah (Astrid Deuber-Mankowsky, Michelle Ty)

2-5 PM

Paragraph 18: Divine power and “educative power”; Judaism and the commandment against killing; the doctrine of self-defense; the condition of “man”; the question of sacred life (Judith Butler, Petar Bojanić)

Paragraph 19: The formulation of the critique of violence as the philosophy of its history; breaking the cycle of the dialectical rising and falling of law-making and law-preserving violence. How to name that break, that “attack on law”? The expiatory power of violence; its invisibility; the final speculations on “true war” and “divine violence” (Pablo Oyarzún)

June 19th

10.00 AM -12.00 PM

Informal discussion of ICCTP and future plans for collaboration.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Information on the Participants

 

Petar Bojanić is the director of the Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory (IFDT) at the University of Belgrade, where he has been a fellow since 2005. He directs the Center for Advanced Studies – South East Europe (CAS) at the University of Rijeka.

 

Judith Butler is Maxine Elliot Professor in the Department of Comparative Literature and the Program in Critical Theory at the University of California, Berkeley. She served as Founding Director of the Program in Critical Theory. She is the Co-Director of the International Consortium of Critical Theory Programs.

 

Marc Crépon is Professor of Philosophy at the École Normale Supérieure, Paris, and the Chair of the Philosophy Department. He is also Research Director at the National Scientific Research Center CNRS, (Husserl Archives).

 

Astrid Deuber-Mankowsky is Professor of Media and Gender Studies at the Ruhr-University in Bochum. She is an external affiliate of the Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought at Goldsmiths, University of London.

 

Başak Ertür is Lecturer in Law and Co-Director of the Centre for Law and the Humanities at the School of Law at Birkbeck, University of London.

 

Peter Fenves is Professor of Literature, German and Comparative Literature at Northwestern University. He has taught at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Johns Hopkins, Princeton and Harvard Universities.

 

Anne-Lise François is Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of California, Berkeley.

 

Dario Gentili is Associate Professor of Moral Philosophy in the Department of Philosophy, Communication and Performing Arts at the University of Roma Tre.

Gentili is a board member of the Associazione Italiana Walter Benjamin (AWB).

 

Julia Ng is Co-Director of the Centre for Philosophy and Critical Thought. She co-chairs the Walter Benjamin London Research Network. She is also Research Associate of the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures at Harvard University.

 

Pablo Oyarzún is Professor of Philosophy and Aesthetics and Director of the Bicentennial Initiative at the University of Chile. He is also director of the Central Research Seminar at the Art Institute of the Catholic University of Valparaíso. Oyarzún has also been a member of the Superior Council of the National Fund of Science and Technology (FONDECYT).

 

Massimo Palma is Assistant Researcher of Philosophy at the Suor Orsola Benincasa University in Naples, Italy.

 

Michelle Ty is Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Clemson University and a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Cultural Inquiry in Berlin. She is currently writing a book about Walter Benjamin’s solidarity with all that is abjected from the category of the human.

Fashion Week Spring 2018

Fashion Week Spring 2018 is organized in collaboration with CeKaDe (Center for the Culture of Dialogue) and Food Network, and its central theme is food. Researchers, politicians, business representatives, philosophers, architects and activists will – for the first time in Croatia – have chance to thoroughly discuss the developing a food network with the future possibility of universal access to food. The focus are the problem of food waste and the issue of upgrading the system of food donations, as well as reinventions and innovative solutions to food production in the urban environment. The program is developed in close collaboration with the “Food and Community” project, financed by European Social Fund and Office for Cooperation with NGOs of the Government of Republic of Croatia, which connects research on University of Rijeka with the efforts to establish the food network in Croatia.

Organizers of Fashion Week Spring 2018 – Food: Policy & Innovation are Rijeka2020 – European Capital of Culture, CeKaDe, Food Network and Center for Advanced Studies South East Europe.

Fashion Week is the seasonal showcase of Sweet&Salt flagship, which is part of the Rijeka – European Capital of Culture 2020 project, presenting the themes, concepts, works, plans and cooperative developments connected to the understanding and designing the future city through the context of Rijeka and the S&S territory.


Food: Policy & Innovation

Date and Venue: June 8 – 9, 2018

DeltaLab, Delta 5 (Ivex building), Rijeka

Day 1

8:00-9:00             Registration

9:00-9:15             Opening Ceremony

Snježana Prijić-Samaržija, Rector of the University of Rijeka

9:15-9:45             Food and Community – Presentation of the Project

Participants: Ana Bobinac, Project manager

Nenad Vretenar, Faculty of Economics, University of Rijeka

Nebojša Zelič, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Rijeka

9:45-10:00           Break

10:00-12:00        Food Policies: European Futures

Participants: Tomislav Tolušić, Minister of Agriculture and vice president of the Government of Republic of Croatia

Biljana Borzan, European Parliament Rapporteur on Food Waste

Mladen Iličković, Journalist, HRT (Croatian National Television)

Dražen Šimleša, ZMAG (Green network of activist groups)

Moderator: Zoran Grozdanov

12:00-13:00        Lunch

13:00-14:00        Donor Perspectives

Participants: Ivana Džakula, Director of Business Support Sector, Konzum

Kristina Klarić Rubčić, Head of Corporate Communications, Dukat

Vladimir Margeta, President of the Association of Croatian family farms

Marina Tomić, The Croatian Institute for Corporate Social Responsibility

Moderator: Vjekoslav Đaić

14:00-14:15        Break

14:15-16:30        How Much Food is Being Wasted?

Participants: Marija Batinić, Ministry of Agriculture, Directorate of Food and Phytosanitary Policy

Branka Ilakovac, Centre for the Prevention of Food Waste

Urša Zgojznik, Ecologists without Borders, Slovenia

Ana Marija Cuglin

Moderator: Ana Bobinac

Day 2

8:00-9:00             Registration

9:00-10:30           Innovation Fair with Coffee

Participants: Sanja Bijonda, President of Humanitarian Organization Portal dobrote

Food Not Bombs,

Food Network Croatia

Moderator: Marko Košak

10:30-10:45        Break

10:45-11:45        The Most Innovative Solution

Food Cloud, Ireland

COO Emma Walsh

11:45-12:00        Break

12:00-14:00        Food: Reinvention

Participants: Damian Sobol Turina – Rijeka Port Areas & Innovative Urban Food Production

Ante Toni Debelić, Growcity

Ida Križaj Leko – Food in the City

14:00                     Lunch