When did we, as a discipline, turn toward ethics—if we can say that we did—and from what did we turn away? Professor Graff Zivin will address the question of the so-called turn to ethics in the humanities, focusing especially on its manifestation in Latin American studies. Reading this sense of a turn as both symptom and trope, she suggests that it emanates from a profound anxiety over the relation between politics and aesthetics, especially as informed by the historical, ideological, and geopolitical shifts of the 1980s. The notion of a turn to ethics tends to presuppose a turn away from politics or a substitution of one for the other. Graff Zivin argues that a diagnosis based on substitution results in an overly narrow understanding of both ethics and politics, a false opposition that ends up limiting the possibilities of each.
Graduate Student Workshop with Professor Graff Zivin
Friday, April 17
RLL Commons, 4th floor MLB
Sponsored by Romance Languages and Literatures, the Institute for the Humanities and the International Institute.