CPF: The Theory Reading Group (Cornell) Conference.

The Theory Reading Group at Cornell University invites submissions for its fifth annual interdisciplinary spring conference:

“Particularity, Exemplarity, Singularity”

Featuring keynote speaker Ian Balfour (York University)

Cornell University

Ithaca, New York

April 17^th -18^th , 2009

The place of the particular, the exemplary, or the singular in contemporary philosophical practice has yet to be decided. While much of the critical thought of the last fifty years has focused on affirming the rights of ephemeral experience or the singular instance by refusing grand narratives or universal systems, more recent years have seen the rebirth of a rationalism that, at least in one of its forms, again relegates particularity to the debased realm of illusion, solipsism, and doxa. At stake in the tension between these two positions is the possibility that there exists some form of specifically artistic or empirical truth, or even a non- phenomenalizable reality of the singular, even if this truth or this reality are not of the order of propositional knowledge.

This conference is guided by the following question: what is the role of the particular, the exemplary, or the singular in critical thought today? Alternatively, how might these terms mark an impasse within systematic knowledge? We understand these questions to accommodate and encourage original reflection on a wide range of topics within philosophy, aesthetics, and literary theory. We invite participants to consider such issues as the relation between literature and philosophy, the status of history or materiality with regard to aesthetic objects, and the contemporary inheritance of the critique of representation as it has been elaborated in continental philosophy since Kant.

Suggested paper topics include (but are not limited to):

Singularity and Event

Literature and its Outside

The Persistence of the Dialectic: Particularity and Universality

The Sublime Limits of Representation

Rhetoric and Philosophy

The Rebirth of Rationalism

The Future of the Linguistic Turn

Taste and Community

Poetics and Aesthetics

Literature and Epistemology, Literary Ways of Knowing

The Literary Absolute

Example, Instance, Case, Sample

Genre, Archetype, Paradigm

Origin, Originality

The Concept of Criticism

Literature and Disenchantment

The Transcendental and the Empirical

The Literal and the Figurative

Problems of Inscription

Symptomatic Reading

Bad Examples

The Genesis of the Singular

Please limit the length of abstracts to no more than 250 words. The deadline for submission of 250-word abstracts for 20-minute presentations is February 28, 2009. Please include your name, e-mail address, and phone number. Abstracts should be e-mailed to theory@cornell.edu Notices of acceptance will be sent no later than March 5, 2009. For more information about the Cornell Theory Reading Group, visit http://www.arts.cornell.edu/trg .

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