March 02, 2005

Stodgy Old Oxbridge We, the

Stodgy Old Oxbridge

We, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” simply love academic conferences. Not only do they allow us the opportunity to keep up with the latest intellectual fashions—which, as you may imagine, are deeply important to our culture’s survival—they also present us with an opportunity to catch up on some much needed sleep.

As far as we’re concerned, nothing is as fortuitous as listening to a grandiloquent chucklehead drone on about “gender(ed) readings of Bryan Adams.” Except for dislocating one’s shoulder, of course.

Accordingly, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” like to keep abreast of the latest conferences. Naturally, then, we routinely check out the “website” of lofty Cambridge University.

It turns out that this beacon of academic respectability will be home to the “Third International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities,” which shall take place in August of this year.

And what kinds of scintillating intellectual fare will be on display at said conference? Why, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” are darned glad you asked.

One Ioannis Vamvakitis, a PhD candidate in Media and Cultural Studies at the University of Sussex, will deliver the all-important paper “Psycho-geography and Schizophrenia: Queers ‘Out for a Walk.’”

Sounds fetching, doesn’t it? If the title hasn’t drawn you in, check out Mr. Vamvakitis’ pithy summary: “I will present my homoerotic subjects’ psychogeographical maps to scrutinize whether their desire is being structurally marginalized/suppressed or produces schizogeographies—do they reconstruct structural space through everyday 'schizo-desiring' e/motions?”

A darn fine question, that.

But we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” know what you are saying to yourselves: What the heck does all that mean?

Never fear, dear reader, never fear. For Mr. Vamvakitis has offered his potential audience member(s) a fuller description of his paper, the beginning of which is as follows:

I strongly believe that an emancipatory homoerotic desire could only exist as a schizophrenic desire which according to Deleuze’s and Guattari’s "schizoanalysis" is simultaneously “architectural” (Grosz, E, 2001) and anti-structural—it is counter-structural, and thus, revolutionary, productive and proud (Deleuze, Guattari, 1982). Therefore, in my DPhil project, I am scrutinizing whether the homosexual could be what Deleuze and Guattari have defined as an “Anti-Oedipus” who through his/her “schizophrenic” wanderings "confronts" capitalism’s social fascism "that causes us to love [social] power [and] desire the…[structures] that dominate and exploit us" (Foucault, M, 1982, xii). What I would like to find out is whether the homosexuals could present a schizo-desiring e/motion that strives against capitalism’s strategic homophobic places—institutional discourses—of power and truth, and in conflict with its "Psychoanalysts and Semiologists" who interpret desire in relation to structure and “lack” (Foucault, 1982, xii). Moreover, and in relation to R. D. Laing’s “anti-psychiatric” existential ontology, I will attempt to clarify whether the schizo-desiring and anti-structural homoerotic e/motion – in the case that it does exist—constitutes the homosexual subjects anti-social leading them to marginality, “despair” (Laing, R. D., 1960), and eventually, to disciplinary institutionalisation, or whether it constitutes them counter-social leading them to radical and liberating modes of social embodiment—to counter-structural, heterotopian identity and space-time constructions.

Ah: That ought to clear things up. And we’re delighted to find that it is highly unlikely that Mr. Vamvakitis will prove prolix.

Just in case you’re still not convinced that Mr. Vamvakitis’ discussion will be a turning point in this history of British higher education, we blithely present yet more evidence: Mr. Vamvakitis’ brief description of his MA thesis:

[It] was titled ‘“Big Brother”: The Reality Show as a Globalized Post-documentary Form’ – Through M. Foucault and H. Lefebvre I attempted to scrutinize the type of western disciplinary spaces that “Big Brother” forges and reproduces, in order to westernize its global inmates and audiences—and received one of the highest marks in the class.

Naturally, this leads us to wonder: What received the lowest marks in the class?

Posted at March 2, 2005 12:01 AM | TrackBack