International Conference in Humanities: Face in Trouble: From Physiognomics to Facebook

Країна: Польща

Місто: Cracow

Тези до: 10.01.2015

Дати: 26.03.15 — 28.03.15

Е-мейл Оргкомітету:

Організатори: Jagiellonian University


In Walter Benjamin’s understanding face is the sign which manifests itself through its withdrawal, which opens the possibility of presenting the materiality of its medium. As such, the medium becomes free for future self­configurations which are unavailable when identity is fixed and stable. This concept reaffirms the position of the self as the other. It is opposed to the main metaphor of face – conceived of as a sign of simple self­presence. Therefore, the term ‘face to face’, a signifier of pure communication, can be treated as a false promise and should be redefined in the context of proliferation of material meanings.

Another tendency opposed to the idea of face transparency stems from the work of Deleuze and Guattari. Their concept of facialization attacks Levinas’s „face as the other”. A Thousand Plateaus proposes a kind of escape from the universal domination of face, its imperial position (facialization obliges the subject to assume a face). Dismantling such an oppressive face means to perform defacialization. Schizos are those subjects who lose the dominant significations of the face.

Face in Trouble seeks to examine those philosophical tendencies which problematize face transparency and try to resist the Levinas’s ethical turn.

The conference will bring together a wide range of specialists of manifold disciplines. It will attempt to present multiple interpretations of face, both in metaphorical and material meanings. Deleuzian view as well as de Man’s description of defacement in autobiography can provide starting points for further critical debate on all the recognitions and misrecognitions that constitute the universal concept of face.

Topics could include, but are not restricted to:

  • Face and physiognomics – the past or unconscious present
  • Face and mask – actuality of old debates
  • Face and authenticity – similarities and differences in modern obsessions
  • Face and identity – ethics, aesthetics and politics of face
  • Face and gender – who is who and why
  • Face and Facebook – everyday self-presentation or destruction of the social power of face
  • Face and new media – real face, avatar, alter ego
  • Face and cosmetic or plastic surgeries – consequences and challenges for identity in makeover culture
  • Face-ism and facial prominence – politics of face presentation
  • Face and racism – the right to have a face
  • Face and book market – using author’s face in contemporary culture
  • Face and body – boundaries, common isssues and differences in philosophy and antropology
  • Face and visual arts – visuality, visibility and performance
  • Face and confessions – what can the face confess?
  • Face and manipulation – creation, blackmail and truth tapes
  • Face and language – poker face, to lose a face …

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