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Sunday March 17 | 9:30 - 10:30
University Theatre building | University Theatre

Critical Intoxication / Intoxicated Critique


There seems to be an inherent tension between intoxication and critique. We tend to associate intoxication with immersion, participation, and proximity, while critique is usually connected to the distance of an outsider-perspective. In my lecture I want to analyse this tension, but I also want to explore the possibilities, with the German philosopher and critic Walter Benjamin as my guide, of a critical intoxication and/or intoxicated critique. What would be the social, political and aesthetic implications for such juxtaposition for both of these categories?

Thijs Lijster (1981) studied philosophy at the University of Groningen and the New School for Social Research in New York. In 2012 he received his PhD in philosophy (cum laude) at the University of Groningen, for a dissertation on Walter Benjamin’s and Theodor W. Adorno’s concepts of art criticism. He lectured on philosophy of art and culture at the Faculties of Philosophy and Arts of the University of Groningen, and the Faculty of Humanities of the University of Amsterdam. Currently he is assistant professor of philosophy of art and culture at the department of Arts, Culture and Media studies of the University of Groningen. Lijster won several awards: in 2009 he received the ABG/VN Essay prize, in 2010 the Dutch/Flemish Prize for Young Art Criticism, and in 2015 the NWO/Boekman dissertation award. He contributed to books such as Conceptions of Critique in Modern and Contemporary Philosophy (eds. De Boer and Sonderegger), Institutional Attitudes and No Culture, No Europe (ed. Gielen) and was coeditor of De Nieuwe Duitse Filosofie (The New German Philosophy, 2013), De Kunst van Kritiek (The Art of Critique, 2015), and Spaces for Criticism. Shifts in Contemporary Art Discourses (2015). In 2017 he published Benjamin and Adorno on Art and Art Criticism. Critique of Art (AUP), and recently, as editor, The Future of the New. Artistic Innovation in Times of Social Acceleration (2018, Valiz).


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