Crisis: Knowledge, History, Law | Workshop University of Kent 29 January 2015

Workshop Details and Registration

29 January 2016 from 9am, Darwin Conference Suite 3, University of Kent

Free, Registration requested via the following link:


Organizer: Thanos Zartaloudis (Kent Law School & AA School of Architecture)

Assistants: Michalis Zivanaris (PhD Candidate, Kent Law School) & Gian Giacomo Fusco (PhD Candidate, Kent Law School)

Funded by: Social Critiques of Law Research Group (Directors: Emilie Cloatre & Donatella Alessandrini) & Kent Law School, University of Kent, Canterbury, UK

Confirmed Speakers:

  • Janet Roitman (The New School for Social Research, New York)
  • Emanuele Coccia (Centre d’Histoire et Théorie des Arts (CEHTA — EHESS), Paris, and The Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America, Columbia University)
  • Marika Rose (University of Durham, Department of Theology and Religion)
  • Anton Schütz (Birkbeck College, School of Law)
  • Esther Leslie (Birkbeck College, Department of English and Humanities)
  • Stathis Gourgouris (Columbia University, Classics, English; Institute for Comparative Literature and Society)
  • Ilias Papagianopoulos (University of Piraeus, International and European Studies)
  • Marina Lathouri (Architectural Association, London, School of Architecture & University of Cambridge, School of Architecture)
  • Bo Isenberg (Lund University, Faculty of Sociology)

We are told that we are “immersed” in crisis: European sovereign debt crisis, the subprime crisis in the United States, the crisis in Afghanistan, the crisis in Darfur, the crisis in the Congo, in Syria, in Cairo, in the Middle East, ecologic crisis and so forth (cf. Roitman), the modern city is crisis, nihilism is crisis and so forth. A bad infinity of crises amounting, in one view, to a ‘global crisis’ that forms a ‘surface effect’ in the reversal of the relation between humans and the world (Serres). To not just enter a moment of crisis, but to be in crisis raises then at first significant entry-level questions (i.e. Who decides whether there is ‘a crisis’? What are the outcomes of being in a permanent state of ‘crisis’? etc.)

Yet at the same time it questions the peculiar nature of crisis as such: its paradoxical elevated status through conditioning normalcy while suspending it; and at the same time its endless encroachment over social processes and beings which, as time goes by, become tomorrow’s normalcy.

This workshop has invited papers by participants on a variety of approaches to the notion and experience of crisis. The aim of the workshop is to interrogate the notion of crisis across and against disciplinary approaches, with one eye set, inevitably, on the ‘contemporary’ situation, but with ever more attention to the intersections between crisis, knowledge, history and law in a wider sense.