Hypomnemata | Reminders
As part of the UPRISING 13/13 seminar series, Spanish Professor Jesús R. Velasco organizes together with Professor Bernard E. Harcourt a photography exhibition about ways of uprising.
Exactly one year ago, thousands of people erected an ephemeral wall of post-its throughout the burrow-like hallways of 14th Street Subway station. Hundreds of thousands of colorful messages were written, put up, memorialized, photographed, touched, read, and cried upon –right before falling down the floor, only to be replaced with new post-its. They conveyed a little bit of fear, a little bit of hope, and, above all, things that we should remember before they become normalized: messages about gender and race equality, about police brutality, about values we hold dear that suddenly became endangered. The post-its have no theory, they have no space, they are part of the bodies of those who wrote it while they were walking through those dark passageways. Remembering, writing, being in contact with those reminders –this is also one of the modalities of uprising. As part of the UPRISING 13/13 seminar series, these pictures want to convey that ephemeral moment: they are, also, fragmentary reminders of something that cannot be lost for history.
About Jesús R. Velasco
Jesús R. Velasco is a professor at Columbia University’s the Department of Latin American and Iberian Cultures, where he teaches Medieval and Early Modern Studies. He has taught at the University of California, Berkeley, Universidad de Salamanca, Université de Paris III (Sorbonne Nouvelle), and the École Normale Supérieure (Lettres et Sciences Humaines). Among his publications are books and articles on Medieval and Early Modern knighthood, history of the book and reading, medieval political theory, law and culture, Occitan poetry, etc. He is one of the executive directors of the Journal of Medieval Iberian Studies and a member of the MLA Committee on Scholarly Editions. He was the recipient of the 2010 John K. Walsh award for his article entitled La urgente presencia de las Siete Partidas.
About Bernard E. Harcourt
Bernard E. Harcourt is a Isidor and Seville Sulzbacher Professor of Law and Director at Columbia University’s Columbia Center for Contemporary Critical Thought. He joined the Columbia Law School faculty in July 2014. His scholarship intersects social and political theory, the sociology of punishment, and penal law and procedure. He is the author most recently of The Illusion of Free Markets: Punishment and the Myth of Natural Order (Harvard University Press 2011) and of Occupy: Three Inquiries in Disobedience (with W. J. T. Mitchell and Michael Taussig, University of Chicago Press 2013). He is the editor of Michel Foucault’s 1973 Collège de France lectures, La société punitive (Gallimard 2013) and the co-editor of Foucault’s 1981 Louvain lectures, Wrong-Doing, Truth-Telling: The Function of Avowal in Justice (Louvain 2012 & University of Chicago Press 2014).
About UPRISING 13/13
The purpose of this seminar series is to explore various modalities of disobedience, inservitude, revolt, social movement, or other forms of political contestation. Instead of including them all under the name of “revolution” –a term that has become conceptually and historically fraught– the focus is on how specific experiences and discourses articulate new forms of uprising or reformulate well-known ones. By focusing on this conceptual, historical and political problematic, the objective is to shine a light on experiences and manifestations that take place at the local and at the global level, as well as at the subjective and the collective level. The idea is to articulate how critical political practice is expressed and understood today. Each session will focus on one form of uprising in relation to historical events, from modern revolutionary movements to the Arab Spring and the Dakota Access Pipeline. The questions will be addressed on the basis of a range of archival and theoretical sources, and other media.
On the last day of the exhibition, on December 13 at 6 pm, the exhibited photographs will be auctioned to benefit Columbia Community Services.