Domestic Violence: The Limits and Possibilities of a Concept

Thu, 10/04/2018 - 4:30pm to Fri, 10/05/2018 - 6:00pm
Betts Auditorium, School of Architecture
Event Category: 
Co-sponsored Event

This one and a half-day conference seeks to start an interdisciplinary conversation on domestic violence, as a legal, political, anthropological, and psychoanalytic concept but also as an aesthetic and representational problem. Domestic violence will be addressed both as an object of historical inquiry and as an urgent contemporary question (e.g., in relation to new legislation in Turkey and in Russia as well as in regard to a U.S. president who was accused of rape in the divorce depositions of his wife). Speakers will analyze domestic violence as a blind spot, a present absence, or an unsaid in certain discourses and representations and pay particular attention to the structural interrelation of domestic violence with other forms of violence (state violence, racial violence, heteronormativity, mass shootings, etc.). We hope to bring together different communities and disciplines on campus to think through an incredibly difficult topic, which not only takes an emotional toll, but which also is conceptually demanding; whereas most conversations err on the side of the concrete and thus study domestic violence only empirically, our conference insists upon a critical, speculative perspective.

Conference Overview
Thursday, Oct. 4, 2018 
Introduction: Barbara N. Nagel (German, Princeton)
Elizabeth A. Povinelli, Keynote (Anthropology, Columbia University)

Friday, Oct. 5, 2018 
Moderation: Regina Kunzel (Gender and Sexuality/ History, Princeton)
Shatema Threadcraft (Government, Dartmouth College)
Michael Snediker (English, University of Houston)

Moderation: Desmond Jagmohan (Politics, Princeton)
Eunice Lee (Co-Legal Director, Hastings Center for Gender and Refugee Studies, University of California)
Martin Harries (English, University of California, Irvine)

Moderation: Daniel Hoffman-Schwartz (Comp.Lit./German, Princeton)
Silke-Maria Weineck (Comparative Literature/German, University of Michigan)
Zeynep Direk (Philosophy, KoƧ University, Istanbul)


Barbara N. Nagel
The Department Of German
Center for Human Values
Princeton Institute for International Regional Studies
Gender and Sexuality Studies
Program in Law and Public Affairs
Department of Anthropology
The Humanities Council
Department of English