Public Lecture Series
All events are free and open to the public


October 3rd, 2013

Judith Butler

(UC Berkeley)

“Kinship Trouble: The Bacchae for the Present”

Great Maloney Room (SARAZ 240)

4-6 pm


November 7th, 2013

Lisa Guenther

(Vanderbilt University)

"Precarity and Survival in the US Carceral Archipelago”

Key Auditorium (RB 202)



February 27th, 2014

Annika Thiem

(Villanova University)

"Philosophy, Critique, and Resistance"

Key Auditorium (RB 202)



March 31st, 2014

Judith Butler

(UC Berkeley)

“Vulnerability and Resistance”

Great Maloney Room (SARAZ 240)


Student Panel with Judith Butler

April 4, 2014

Fr. Kuhn Alumni House,

Boland Room



Symposium on Living Philosophers

Judith Butler

Maxine Elliot Professor of Rhetoric & Comparative Literature

University of California, Berkeley


Judith Butler Public Lecture: “Vulnerability and Resistance”

Monday, March 31, 5-7pm, Great Maloney Room


The goal of this lecture is to reflect on the ways in which bodies come together to performforms of resistance in ways that risk vulnerability. The thesis is that coalitions that appear in public space reconfigure the space of politics and the corporeal dimensions of performative, plural action. At stake is the role of bodies in public space. Bodies appear, for instance, to object to modes of privatization, but they are also very much the subject of politics, at risk of losing basic infrastructural conditions for their own persistence. This lecture will consider contemporary examples of bodies that expose and mobilize corporeal vulnerabilty to make their points through both words, gestures, and actions. The argument involves understanding vulnerability not merely as the potential for suffering physical harm, but also as a relational feature of social life. At a political level, it raises the question of the possibility forprecarity to be mobilized as part of a performative politics of resistance.


The Siena College Symposium on Living Philosophers Student Panels
Friday, April 4, 10am-4.30pm,
Boland Room, Fr. Kuhn Alumni House


10.00am-12.30pm: Panel 1

Subverting Norms: Gender, Race, and Desire

Oscar Ralda, “Riven Agency: Time, Action, and the Ethical Turn”
Sarah Ferritto, “Tension Between the ‘G’ and the ‘T’ in L.G.B.T” 

Kristen Ippolito, “Recognizing Androgyny” 
Ryan Chin, “An Unsettling Revelation: The Ambivalence of Subversion in Race and Gender”
Emma Ciborowski, “The Subversive Potential of Pleasure”

12.30-2.00pm: Lunch Break

2.00-4.30pm: Panel 2 

Precarious Politics: Citizenship, Surveillance, and Prison Justice
Vicky Rybnick, “Precariousness and the Survival of the Human”

Colin McFarland, “Citizens and Traitors: Subverting the Role of a Lifetime”
Matt Herrmann, “A New Age: Spying Culture in Post-9/11 America”
Jess Murphy, “Maximum Insecurity: Reimagining Justice Through Precariousness”




The 2013-2014 Symposium on Living Philosophers will focus on the work of Judith Butler. Judith Butler is Maxine Elliot Professor in the Departments of Rhetoric and Comparative Literature and the Co-director of the Program of Critical Theory at the University of California, Berkeley. She received her Ph.D. in Philosophy from Yale University in 1984 on the French Reception of Hegel. Judith Butler is the author of Subjects of Desire: Hegelian Reflections in Twentieth-Century France (1987), Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity (1990), Bodies That Matter: On the Discursive Limits of ‘Sex’ (1993), The Psychic Life of Power: Theories of Subjection (1997), Excitable Speech (1997), Antigone’s Claim: Kinship Between Life and Death (2000), Precarious Life: The Powers of Mourning and Violence (2004), Undoing Gender (2004), Who Sings the Nation-State?: Language, Politics, Belonging (with Gayatri Spivak, 2008), Frames of War: When Is Life Grievable? (2009), and Is Critique Secular? (with Talal Asad, Wendy Brown, and Saba Mahmood, 2009). Her most recent book is Parting Ways: Jewishness and the Critique of Zionism (2012). She is also active in gender and sexual politics and human rights, anti-war politics, and Jewish Voice for Peace. She is the recipient of the Andrew Mellon Award for Distinguished Academic Achievement in the Humanities, and is the 2012 recipient of the Adorno Prize in Germany.

Directors: Fanny Söderbäck and Karen Ng      


External Scholar: Stuart Murray, Carleton University