Three Guy Gaze: Between Animation and Reification

Hi folks,

An unholy alliance of the Hurford Center and Haverford’s Magill Library has produced two great events this week.  Here’s some info on the first:

*This* Wednesday, 9/19/12:
On Kafka’s Things: Between Animation and Reification
Young Academic Alumni Lecture by Brook Henkel ’05
Tea at 4:15 p.m.; talk at 4:30 p.m.
Magill Library, Philips Wing, Haverford College

This talk will address the curious depictions of “living” things in the writings of Franz Kafka. Animated objects such as Odradek from Kafka’s The Cares of a Family Man, for example, have figured prominently both in older debates about commodity fetishism and reification and in more recent, theoretical discussions on the “materiality” and “agency” of things. Read alongside and against such theoretical appropriations, Kafka’s literary representations of things can be situated according to a productive interplay between animation and reification. The fiction of “living” things in Kafka’s writings emerges as a powerful literary strategy for provoking questions about responsibility and mediation in relations among humans and nonhumans.

Brook Henkel (’05) is a PhD student in the department of Germanic Languages at Columbia University. He received his M.A. (2009) and M.Phil. (2011) from Columbia in German Literature and is currently completing his dissertation, titled “Animistic Fictions, 1900–1930: The Lives of Things in German Modernist Literature and Film.”

Sponsored by the Department of German, the Library, and the Hurford Center for the Arts and Humanities.

ALSO… Professor of Poetry Tom Devaney is laying it down as part of the E-Verse Equinox Reading Series *this Tuesday* 9/18 at 7:00 p.m. in the Moonstone Arts Center (Robin’s Books) at 13th and Sansom downtown.  See you there.

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