Tuesday February 16th, 2016 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM

Margaret Jacks Hall (Bldg 460)
Terrace Room, 4th floor


Ursula K. Heise is a Professor of English at UCLA and a faculty member of UCLA’s Institute of the Environment and Sustainability (IoES). She is a 2011 Guggenheim Fellow and was President of the Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment (ASLE) in 2011. Her research and teaching focus on contemporary environmental culture, literature and art in the Americas, Western Europe and Japan; theories of globalization; literature and science; and the digital humanities. Her books include Chronoschisms: Time, Narrative, and Postmodernism (Cambridge University Press, 1997), Sense of Place and Sense of Planet: The Environmental Imagination of the Global (Oxford University Press, 2008), and Nach der Natur: Das Artensterben und die moderne Kultur [After Nature: Species Extinction and Modern Culture] (Suhrkamp, 2010). She is currently working on a book entitled Where the Wild Things Used To Be: Narrative, Database, and Endangered Species.

This event is co-sponsored by the Interdisciplinary Working Group in Critical Theory and the Stanford Environmental Humanities Project with generous support from the Program in Modern Thought and Literature.


About the Interdisciplinary Working Group in Critical Theory:
The Interdisciplinary Working Group in Critical Theory brings together faculty and graduate students from across the humanities and qualitative social sciences to address current theoreticaldebates by reading and discussing texts that both define and disrupt disciplinary thinking. With the goal of facilitating ongoing interdisciplinary inquiry, we have chosen four thematic foci that tie together the disciplinary concerns and latent research agendas of workshop participants: affect, materialisms, speculation, and transitions. By providing a sustained platform for cross-disciplinary dialogue, the workshop aims to provoke discussions that would be difficult to replicate in a one-quarter graduate course, allowing participants to test disciplinary assumptions within a sympathetic yet serious scholarly environment. The workshop is sponsored by the Stanford Humanities Center with additional support from the Program in Modern Thought and Literature.

About the Stanford Environmental Humanities Project:
The Stanford Environmental Humanities Project (EHP) provides a forum for an interdisciplinary approach to environmental issues. It foregrounds recent work of humanities scholars in disciplines such as cultural studies, history, literary studies, philosophy and anthropology that has engaged with environmental problems, and explores how this research contributes to current discussions about ecological crisis. The EHP seeks to link scholarship in the humanities with the work of writers and artists, and with research in the social and natural sciences.

Posted by MTL on January 22, 2016

Tuesday March 1st, 2016 3:00 PM to 4:30 PM

Margaret Jacks Hall (Bldg 460)
Terrace Room, 4th floor


Michael Boyden is a Senior Lecturer of American literature at Uppsala University in Uppsala, Sweden where he has worked since 2013. He is now working on a long-term project which thematizes literary responses to foreign revolutions in American literature. He will present a chapter from this new book focusing on reverberations of Atlantic revolutionary waves (1789-1848) in American natural history and fiction. Among other things, he will engage with recent proclamations by Dipesh Chakrabarty and others that we live in an age of environmental reflexivity. Contra Chakrabarty, he argues that environmentalist doctrines were not only central to the Atlantic imaginary in the early nineteenth-century, but also served to rhetorically cement post-revolutionary society.

This event is by the Stanford Division of Literatures, Cultures, & Languages, the Europe Center, the Stanford Environmental Humanities Project, American Studies, Modern Thought and Literature, and the Interdisciplinary Working Group on the Contemporary.


About the Interdisciplinary Working Group on the Contemporary:

This Interdisciplinary Working Group on the Contemprary examines the  “contemporary” with a focus on defining moments such as: 1945, 1973, 1989, and 2001. In recent years the concept of the contemporary has been taken up within limited disciplinary discourses and in the context of distinct geographical settings. The horizon of this workshop, however, is the global. We employ a comparative and interdisciplinary approach to the hybrid term “contemporary” as it intersects various fields and serves as a heuristic device to understand phenomena in politics, culture, and the arts.

Posted by MTL on January 20, 2016