Indiana University Bloomington

Spring '18: Jean-François Lyotard's The Differend


How does injustice take place in the context of language? How do we conceptualize conflicting claims that offer no avenue for mediation? For guidance, the Center turns to philosopher Jean-François Lyotard’s 1983 landmark study The Differend. Lyotard defines a “differend” as a claim that lacks a language in which its demands can be formulated. His exploration of a multiplicity of language games speaks to our present situation, which is characterized by an accelerating fragmentation of the public sphere and the emergence of unbridgeable differences of perspectives. The work of the reading group culminates in a symposium, in which leading scholars help us think through and with Lyotard’s important book.

All Center events are open to the public.

"War and the Political," Spring 2018 Graduate Course

Taught by Prof. Edgar Illas (Spanish & Portuguese), the course will explore one fundamental hypothesis, namely that war is an ontological event, an event that produces new social orders of being. The fact that globalization has materialized as an endless state of exception and conflict has made it all the more urgent to reflect on the ontological function of war. More>

New Work by Faculty:
Eyal Peretz, The Off-Screen

From the Renaissance on, a new concept of the frame becomes crucial to artistic media, Eyal Peretz (Comp Lit) argues in his new book. The modern theatrical stage, framed paintings, the novel, the cinematic screen—all present us with such framed-off zones. But what is outside the frame constitutes the primary enigma of the work of art in the modern age.

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