How Can We Invent a Community? Seminar accompanying the exhibition Rozdzielona Wspólnota - Inoperative community II

Moderated by Tomasz Załuski
15 June 2016 at 18:00, 
ms1, Więckowskiego 36, Library

Jean-Luc Nancy is a French philosopher, considered a representative of deconstructivism. His works put stress on existential, political and aesthetic, as well as aesthetic and artistic issues. Regarded as an important continuator of M. Heidegger, H. Arendt, and J. Derrida, creative heir of phenomenological and existentialist tradition but also a fully fledged independent thinker, initiator of numerous new lines of thinking in modern philosophical reflection, in particular in political philosophy.  
Among major works of Nancy we can mention “Inoperative Community” published also in Poland. It examines a series of fundamental notions representing the tradition of social and political thought, including the notion of a community.  Nancy demonstrates to what extent 20th century political practice is based on the categories of “production” and “work of art” typical of modern thinking about a community.  Yet, to Nancy community is not and should not be a “work of art”, i.e., a kind of above-individual, collective subject that experiences its unity by identifying itself with a given essence (ethnic, national, religious, etc.) and excludes everything that is alien and heterogeneous.  According to the French philosopher, community  is about many individuals seeking to oppose any forms of exclusion and uniformisation.  It is an ontological and political fact of the presence of many co-existing communities who endlessly negotiate their common world and take decisions on how and why they are together.   
During the seminar we will analyse  excerpts from Nancy's book “Inoperative Community”, consider to what extent reflections included in it have lost their actuality and discuss possibilities to take up his postulate to “invent” a community in practice. 

Tomasz Załuski – art historian and philosopher, Associate Professor in the Department of Media and Audiovisual Culture of the University of Lodz and in the Strzeminski Academy of Art in Łódź.  His research interests include modern and contemporary artistic practices against the background of cultural, social and political contexts, configurations of aesthetics, ethics and politics in cultural project of modernity and French contemporary philosophy. He wrote ”Modernizm artystyczny i powtórzenie. Próba reinterpretacji” [Artistic Modernism and Repetition. An Attempt at Reinterpretation](2008), edited the following volumes ”Sztuki w przestrzeni transmedialnej” [Art in Transmedia Space](2010), ”Skuteczność sztuki” [Efficiency of Art] (2014), and translated  (together with M. Gusin) Jean-Luc Nancy's “Inoperative Community” (2010) and Jacques Derrida’s “Spectres of Marx” (2016).

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