The London Conference in Critical Thought @ Birkbeck College, Uk, 29/30 June 2012

The London Conference in Critical Thought (LCCT) is an interdisciplinary and inter-institutional event created to foster emergent critical thought and provide new avenues for critically orientated scholarship and collaboration. It welcomes diverse and interdisciplinary work from the humanities and social sciences including, but not limited to, papers drawing upon continental philosophy, critical legal theory, critical geography and critical theory.
The LCCT will take place at Birkbeck College, June 29th and 30th, 2012.  It is supported in its inaugural year by the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities. The conference is free, however, registration is mandatory. A full programme of the conference will be available soon with abstracts will be available soon, however, in the meantime we have now released a short version of the programme which can be found here: http://progressivegeographies.com/2012/05/27/london-conference-in-critical-thought/
In light of the current state of the situation—the rapid increase in socio-economic inequalities, the crisis of state sovereignty, the broader crisis of global financial capitalism, and the lack of a radical counter-praxis on the Left—this stream/panel attempts to think political/social/economic emancipation through the ideal of egalitarianism. Given the unipolarity of capitalist realism, there is a desperate need for an intervention that breaks this ruse of the one-all, that forces us to think an other, an outside, or a beyond. The idea of egalitarian emancipation stands opposed to both the state of nature as well as the capitalist state. Contemporary social theory must reassess, rethink and reinvent the problems, solutions, paradoxes and attempted syntheses in order to move past the plateau of late Twentieth century post-structuralism. We aim to think the primacy of egalitarianism as an emancipatory force against the inherent stratification of the capitalist world. We aim to think the possibility of a novel foundation or grounding beyond the ‘post’.
Stream/panel papers could address the following topics and questions:
    • Revival of a dead concept: How to think emancipation in the contemporary conjuncture of late-capitalism?

    • Demos [the commons, common people] and kratos [power]: What does it mean to take power under the guise of ‘the common’?

    • Politics beyond the state, beyond class ‘relations’, beyond capitalism: Revolution or Reformation? Full Communism or …? Dealing with emancipation’s Marxian legacy.

    • The subject after post-structuralism [or, Human all too inhuman]: How may we think a subject for egalitarian emancipation? What are the implications of this for race, sex, gender, etc.?

    • Relation of freedom and emancipation: What are the implications of egalitarian emancipation forthe social contract? [or, must we force [wo]man to be free?]

    • Emancipation in practice: What do we learn from contemporary struggles about the possibility and implications for theorizing this concept today?
Relevant thinkers include Badiou, Rancière, Balibar, Laclau, Fanon, Agamben, Nancy, Frankfurt School, Zizek, De Beauvoir and many others.