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Gauss Seminars in Criticism: “Back to the Future of the End”

Alenka Zupančič, The Slovene Academy of Sciences and Arts

April 19, 2022 · 5:00 pm7:00 pm · Betts Auditorium

Humanities Council

The Humanities Council’s Spring 2022 Gauss Seminars in Criticism will be presented by Alenka Zupančič (The Slovene Academy of Sciences and Arts).  Her visit, under the general title of “Back to the Future of the End,” will comprise a public lecture on Tuesday, April 19 and a seminar on Wednesday, April 20.

The lecture, “Dead Ends,” explores the strange psychological and social dynamics involved in denial and disavowal. To take just one example, the denial of the catastrophic dimensions of climate change is bound to hasten that very catastrophe. Disavowal is also an interesting phenomenon because it is not simply about denying or ignoring a threat, but about robbing it of its reality, while being fully aware of it. Judging from these and other similar phenomena, one could conclude that we are more afraid of being scared to death than of actually dying. Why is that?

Alenka Zupančič is a Slovene philosopher and social theorist. She works as Research Councilor at the Institute of Philosophy, Scientific Research Center of the Slovene Academy of Sciences and Arts. She is also professor at the European Graduate School in Switzerland, and is invited as a guest lecturer to numerous universities worldwide. Renowned for her work on the intersection of philosophy and psychoanalysis, she is the author of numerous articles and many books, including Ethics of the Real: Kant and Lacan; The Shortest Shadow: Nietzsche’s Philosophy of the Two; Why Psychoanalysis: Three Interventions; The Odd One In: On Comedy; What is Sex? and, forthcoming, Let Them Rot: Antigone’s Parallax.

Tuesday,  April 19 at 5:00 PM in Betts Auditorium

Public Lecture:  “Dead Ends”

Open to PU ID holders. Attendees will be required to wear face coverings. Register here.

Wednesday, April 20 at 12:00 PM — Location TBA

Seminar: “The Apocalypse is Disappointing?”

RSVP required for this lunch seminar, which is open only to members of the Princeton University community. To reserve a spot, please email both Andrew Cole (acole@princeton.edu) and Jeannine Matt Pitarresi (jp16@princeton.edu). The location will be communicated to all registrants several days before the seminar.


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