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Lunchtime Video: Jack Halberstam on An Aesthetics of Collapse

Wednesday January 31st
Doors open 12.45pm; Video starts 1pm.
Library open for readers until 5pm (please no laptops or other devices)

Every Wednesday in January, we're showing recorded lectures at lunchtime in our ground floor space. Kairos will then be open all afternoon for anyone who would like to stay on and read in our library (please no laptops or other devices).

In this talk (delivered at the University of Nebraska in October 2021) Jack Halberstam, Professor of Gender Studies and English at Columbia University, argues that before we can begin to imagine any sort of utopian future, we must first go through a process of "unworlding" to dismantle the current power structures.

He explores works of art that embrace collapse rather than fight against it - Ursula Le Guin's anarchist novel The Dispossessed, Rachel Whiteread's sculpture House and NK Jemisin's science fiction trilogy Broken Earth. The Piers, African American photographer Alvin Baltrop's study of the ruined piers of 1970s New York and the erotic encounters that took place there, created an aesthetic of collapse and a challenge to mainstream, heteronormative, capitalist culture.

Kairos, 84 Tottenham Court Road, London W1T 4TG

Free entry. No booking required. Bring your own vegan packed lunch (no animal products please).