Engaging Boredom: A symposium for the practice and theory of resisting, embracing, and understanding boredom — Queen’s University, April 2015

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ENGAGING BOREDOM: A symposium for the practice and theory of resisting, embracing, and understanding boredom

“Boredom is pregnant with desires, frustrated frenzies, unrealized possibilities. A magnificent life is waiting just around the corner, and far, far away.” Henri Lefebvre, Introduction to Modernity: Twelve Preludes (1995).

April 26, 2015
Wallace Hall, John Deutsch University Centre
Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario

Boredom can be perceived as both stifling and liberating: as an emptiness to be avoided or else as a overflowing of time and space. In this view boredom is monotonous, repetitive, and dull, but it is also a potential source of insight and creativity – a pause that gives perspective or an empty space to be filled. This symposium seeks to engage boredom and to explore the dangers and potentials it represents in a way that moves beyond the confines of traditional academic conferences. We welcome proposals for academic presentations; presentations from community organizations; workshops or activities; and performances. Please send proposals to engagingboredom@gmail.com by April 1st 2015. For more information, visit engagingboredom.wordpress.com or see the attached poster and full CFP.

L’ennui est à la fois étouffante et libératrice: il est un vide à éviter mais il représente aussi un débordement de temps et de l’espace. Dans ce point de vue l’ennui est monotone, répétitif et ennuyeux, mais il est aussi une source potentielle de perspicacité et de créativité – une pause qui donne la perspective ou un espace vide à remplir. Ce colloque vise à engager l’ennui et à explorer les dangers et les potentiels qu’il représente d’une manière qui va au-delà des limites des conférences académiques traditionnelles. Nous accueillons des propositions pour: les présentations académiques; présentations des organisations communautaires; ateliers ou activités; et performances. N.B. Toutes les présentations doivent être en anglais. SVP envoyer vos propositions à engagingboredom@gmail.com par 1 Avril 2015. Pour plus d’informations, visitez engagingboredom.wordpress.com ou voir ci-joint le fichier et l’appel complet.

Academic Keynote Address by Dr. Michael E. Gardner

Michael E. Gardiner is Professor of Sociology at the University of Western Ontario, Canada. He is the author of numerous books, journal articles and book chapters on dialogical social theory, ethics, everyday life and utopianism. More recently he has turned his attention towards theories of affect, especially boredom, in relation to political economy. His latest book is Weak Messianism: Essays in Everyday Utopianism (Peter Lang, 2013).

Community Keynote Address by Nathan Townend

Nathan is the interim-President of the Kingston Greens and Green Party candidate for Kingston and The Islands in the 2015 federal election. He served as a policy advisor and core team member for Brenda Slomka’s mayoral campaign in 2014. He is also an elected executive member of Public Service Alliance of Canada Local 901 which represents teaching assistants, teaching fellows, and post-doctoral fellows at Queen’s University. Nathan holds a Master of Arts in Religion and Modernity from Queen’s University, where his thesis focused on religious responses to the ecological crisis, with specific attention to human relationships with non-human animals.


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