THE POLITICS OF LIFE:
RETHINKING RESISTANCE IN THE BIOPOLITICAL ECONOMY
BALSILLIE SCHOOL OF INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS
WILFRID LAURIER UNIVERSITY
67 ERB STREET WEST, WATERLOO, CANADA
MARCH 2-4, 2017
The recently formed Technē: Wilfrid Laurier University Biopolitical Research Group is organizing its inaugural event called “The Politics of Life: Rethinking Resistance in the Biopolitical Economy” (March 2-4, 2017). This event consists of a two-day workshop with papers by an international group of biopolitical scholars, a keynote lecture by Kim TallBear (University of Alberta), a graduate student lecture by Iain MacKenzie (University of Kent), and a graduate student conference at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Canada.
Biopolitics concerns the politicization of life. This paradigm first gathered steam with the studies conducted by Michel Foucault in the mid-1970s. Today many of the world’s leading philosophers and researchers from across the social sciences and humanities are turning to this paradigm to examine anything from biometric surveillance, biomedical technology, global warming, immigration policy, pandemics, public health, up to the human genome project. Most of this research, however, is framed in a negative fashion: life is dominated, controlled, regulated, subjugated, and in the extreme cases negated. Moreover, only recently has research started to take into account how these issues have become economic issues. An international group of scholars and graduate students will address this negative trend in biopolitical research across the three days of our event. We will approach this problem from a variety of academic disciplines, including Communication Studies, Indigenous Studies, International Relations, Literary Studies, Philosophy, Political Science, Social Work, and Sociology. We will cover this problem from a wide range of critical theories, critical race theory, decolonization theory, environmentalism, feminism, indigenous theory, and LGBTQ2S theory. We will also cover a wide range of theoretical perspectives in biopolitics, from the Italian strains to the Foucauldian, Deleuzian, posthumanist theories in the U.S., up to post-colonial perspectives. Our focus on reformulating the politics of life, from a variety of theoretical, practical, and disciplinary perspectives, will encourage scholars from different backgrounds to communicate with each other across epistemic and linguistic divides and to forge a common frame of reference. The workshop portion of this event will appeal to local and regional scholars and students from across the social sciences and humanities; ranging from those already familiar with biopolitics to those who are interested in learning about it.
We acknowledge the traditional territory of the Neutral, Anishnawbe and Haudenosaunee peoples, on whose land these events will take place.
We are also committed to being inclusive and accessible to all, accommodation requests should be made by February 15 to Sahver Kuzucuoglu (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Technē Event Organizers:
Greg Bird - email@example.com
Sahver Kuzucuoglu - firstname.lastname@example.org
Jalal Midani - email@example.com
Mihnea Panu – firstname.lastname@example.org
Raluca Parvu – email@example.com
This event has been generously supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the International Migration Research Centre, the WLU Office of the Provost & Vice-President: Academic, WLU Faculty of Arts, WLU Faculty of Liberal Arts, WLU Faculty of Graduate & Postgraduate Studies, and the Cultural Analysis and Social Theory MA Program.