The Lionel Trilling Seminar


Monday, March 6, 2017  6:15pm Jerome Greene Hall (Law School), Jerome Greene Hall, Room 106


Free and open to the public

No registration necessary

First come, first seated

This paper addresses humorlessness as ontology, performance, and affect; and as threat and aspiration. It asks how the encounter with humorlessness structures the political scene and style of encounter, and it looks at how unlearning attachment to some styles of it without repairing its force have been modeled aesthetically as performance. Its cases range from the League of Revolutionary Black Workers' documentary, *Finally Got the News* (1970) to some contemporary political art of Steve McQueen, William Pope.L, and Claire Pentecost. The talk is humorless, among other things. This is a first foray into a new project.


  • Speaker

    Lauren Berlant

    George M. Pullman Distinguished Service Professor

    University of Chicago

  • Respondent

    Rob King

    Associate Professor of Film

    Columbia University

  • Respondent

    Kendall Thomas

    Nash Professor of Law; Director, Center for the Study of Law and Culture

    Columbia University


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