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Keynote: Resources for Hope: Moments of collective joy

Keynote: Lynne Segal

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Looking at popular culture around the globe, we appear to be living in rather dystopian times, with any form of utopic yearning all but obliterated from our fantasies of the future. This dystopic imagination resonates with what we should all know by now, the chilling reports on climate change, water shortage, ongoing conflict, displacement, widespread despair. Yet, I still take seriously the words of Raymond Williams, ‘To be truly radical is to make hope possible, rather than despair convincing’. Moreover, a spirit of resistance to the disorders of the present never entirely disappears, rising and falling as circumstance allow. What is exciting about this moment is that despite, and also because of, so many shared anxieties, there is today greater engagement in politics than has occurred for a very long time. In Radical Happiness, for instance, I note that we sometimes renew our attachments to life by embracing both its real sorrows, alongside the possible joys of collectivity, when confronting troubles far larger than our own. For it is increasingly clear to many that some form of utopian spirit, rejecting the commodified life enshrining consumption, competition and ubiquitous subservience to corporate market interests, is now essential for us to have any tolerable future at all. Just trying to envisage how we can help to create a more sustainable, peaceful and fairer world brings a certain audacity and energy to life, at least in the process of sharing such imaginings. As Brecht asked and answered, ‘In dark times/Will there also be singing? Yes, there will also be singing/About the dark times’.
Chair: Giacomo D'Alisa


Day: 2018-08-25
Start time: 10:00
Duration: 01:30
Room: Nöjesteatern (Theater)
Track: - Other - (fill submission note below)



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