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You are here: The Platypus Affiliated Society/Archive for category Jocelyn Li

Held at Loyola University on April 15, 2015.

-- David Mountain (London, UK) 
-- Jocelyn Li (Halifax, Canada) 
-- Sebastian Vetter (Vienna, Austria) 
-- Shirin Hagner (Frankfurt, Germany)

While the academy is more liberal than the American mainstream, economic pressures, such as declining opportunities to succeed on the job market, have led to a general depoliticization of the recent generation, the “millennials.” In Europe, on the other hand, the academy still appears as a hotbed of student radicalism: occupations of university buildings across Europe in 2009, demonstrations in UK universities in 2010 to resist tuition hikes and spending cuts, and various protests calling for more democracy and less austerity throughout Europe, but particularly in Greece and Spain.

The Platypus Affiliated Society presents a round-table discussion with student activists from Europe and Canada who will share their views on recent protest movements in their countries. What issues have been prominent? What has been the relationship between student movements and traditional agents of social change, such as labor unions and social democratic or socialist parties? In the past, professors such as Herbert Marcuse played a significant role in radicalizing protesters. Whom do student activists regard today as sources of intellectual and political inspiration, and what does this influence look like?

We invite local students to share their own experiences with these international representatives, and to discuss the possibilities for a re-politicized student body in the United States.

Sponsored by the Loyola University Student Activities Fund, with the support of Loyola's Student Activities and Greek Affairs.

A moderated panel discussion hosted by the Platypus Affiliated Society held on Friday, May 24, 2013 at the Eyelevel Gallery in Halifax.

In conjunction with the Annual Y-Level Exhibition ("And all sat mute")

Please Note: Due to technical problems, the ending of the event for both audio and video is cut off.

If it is true that the 'commodity-structure' (Lukacs) is the defining feature of modern capitalism down through the present, then it stands to reason that it has no less impacted the way art is produced, consumed, circulated, and exchanged. This shift in art's character happened both objectively (e.g., as in an article produced for exchange on the market), and subjectively (i.e., as a kind of experience and form of expression for the social and individual body). However, art's relationship to its status as a commodity is an ambivalent one: Art has become at once more free from past forms of domination, but its freedom is constrained when subject to the dynamics of capital. Art as a commodity is both its cure and poison, and has become a social problem for its practice. Since becoming aware of this problem, artists, philosophers, curators, and critics have taken various approaches in seeking to overcome it.

How has art under a capitalist society changed from its pre-capitalist practices? What is the commodity-form, and what is art's relationship to its logic? Must art seek emancipation from the commodity-form, or is it at home in it? In what sense does art take part in the Left and emancipatory politics -- a practice also seeking to overcome the commodity-form -- if at all? By asking these questions, this panel seeks to reinvestigate art's relationship to the commodity form, and make intelligible how this problematic relationship still sticks with us today.

Merray Gerges
Jocelyn Li
Jakub Milčák
Beck Gilmer-Osborne