On the occasion of Pedro Reyes’ upcoming exhibition Baby Marx which opens next Thursday, we’ll have two intellectual power houses-Michael Hardt and Lauren Berlant-in conversation with Reyes to discuss some of the most influential ideas on politics and economy, as they relate to Reyes’ project and its complicated relationship to the current economic crisis. In this video teaser is a selection of clips featuring Michael Hardt in the documentary film Examined Life (directed by Astra Taylor, 2008, clips courtesy of Zeitgeist Films) and a full-length lecture recently given by Berlant at the University of Chicago that centers around her soon to be released book, Cruel Optimism.
Lauren Berlant is the George M. Pullman Professor of English at the University of Chicago. Her work on political emotion includes The Queen of America Goes to Washington City: Essays on Sex and Citizenship (1997) and The Female Complaint: the Unfinished Business of Sentimentality in American Culture (2008), in addition to the forthcoming Cruel Optimism. She is also the editor of Intimacy; Compassion: the Culture and Politics of an Emotion; Our Monica, Ourselves: The Clinton Affair and the National Interest (with Lisa Duggan); and a two volume number of Critical Inquiry, On the Case (2007).
Michael Hardt is a political philosopher and literary theorist at Duke University, North Carolina. Hardt’s recent writings focus primarily on deciphering various aspects of globalization through the style of writing he defines as eclecticism – or bringing together in one place and connecting the ideas of various thinkers such as Karl Marx, Michel Foucault, Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari, Antonio Gramsci and Thomas Jefferson. His most famous works, Empire (2000), Multitude: War and Democracy in the Age of Empire (2004), and Commonwealth (2009) were written in collaboration with Antonio Negri and are considered by many as major events in political and critical theory.