113th Annual Conference - Portland, Oregon
Friday, November 6 - Sunday, November 8, 2015

Aesthetics of Democracy

Session Chair: 
Amy Greenstadt, Portland State University
Session 6: Saturday 8:30-10:00am
Parlor C (PH-ET)


  1. Amy Greenstadt, Portland State University
    Shylock’s “Hath not a Jew eyes?” speech appears a timeless argument for human equality. Yet he ends by justifying revenge on Christians. Why does a speech about our common humanity end with a call for ethnic violence? Shylock’s apparent empathy dissolves when he stops emphasizing humans’ equal subjection to nature. If foundational ideas of equality were predicated on a shared relationship to this feminine entity, could this help us to articulate the possibilities, and limits, of socioeconomic equality today?
  2. Alastair Hunt, Portland State University
    Coleridge neither makes an ass of himself nor asses (or horses) around, as critics have argued, in his 1794 lyric “To a Young Ass.” Rather, he expresses the difficult and disturbing inaugural appearance of a nonhuman being as a bearer of what Hannah Arendt calls “the right to have rights.”
  3. Ian Afflerbach, University of California Davis
    In his Presidential Papers (1964)—often written as direct addresses to JFK—Norman Mailer exposed the iconic “Kennedy style” as equally suitable for radically democratic or totalitarian government. Moving between Mailer’s text and the Democratic Party’s history, this paper explores the tensions within midcentury American liberalism’s emerging politics of style. 
  4. Bishupal Limbu, Portland State University
    This paper discusses aesthetics, democracy, and education in the work of Jacques Rancière and Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak.
Session Cancelled: