Institute for Social Justice

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Masterclass Series – Critique and Critical Theory

We are offering Critique and Critical Theory as part of the ISJ Masterclass Series and the PhDSPT Research Methodologies course.

This Masterclass is suitable for postgraduates and researchers who would like to further their knowledge in critical theory.

When: 15 – 17 March 2017, 10 – 1pm

Where: Level 2, 7 Mount Street, North Sydney

Lecturer: Professor Nikolas Kompridis


In recent years, some probing questions have been raised about the value of critique, particularly in its various “unmasking” forms and strategies. For example, Talal Asad, (“Free Speech, Blasphemy, and Secular Critique),” Bruno Latour (“Has Critique Run out of Steam?”), Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick (“Paranoid Reading and Reparative Reading”), and Michael Warner (“Uncritical Reading”), and, most recently, Rita Felski, The Limits of Critique (2016), have challenged the normative and epistemological assumptions as well as the ethical and political implications of critique as an unmasking practice. Latour provocatively asks whether critique “has run out of steam? … Are we not like those mechanical toys that endlessly make the same gesture when everything else has changed around them?” This master class will consider these probing challenges, and explore the question of whether historical circumstances call for a different understanding and different practice of critique than that which has guided us, at least since Kant. Would a change in the meaning and practice of critique alter the form and character of “critical theory”?

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