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Zakiyyah Iman Jackson: On Measurement: Apparatus and Variable in the Ecology of Race

December 8, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

The Center for Culture, History, and Environment (CHE) welcomes Zakiyyah Iman Jackson, University of Southern California, Dornsife.


Abstract: In Jacques Derrida’s Of Spirit, the late philosopher provocatively asks, “Is a metaphysics of race more or less serious than a naturalism or biologism of race?” Jackson’s lecture will offer a meditation on the material consequences of the metaphysics of race for “the body” by asking another question, “Is ‘the body’ metaphysical?” Jackson will argue that it is and provide an analysis of what metaphysics does to materiality, nature, and biology as well as our conceptualization of these terms.

Thinking through the black(ened) zone Hortense Spillers has termed “the flesh,” this lecture proceeds by revisiting and elaborating key terms from Jackson’s book, Becoming Human: Matter and Meaning in an Antiblack World, specifically biocentrism, measurement, ecology, variable and apparatus.

Funding for this event is provided in part by the University Lectures Kemper K. Knapp Fund. This event is co-sponsored by the Department of African Cultural Studies, Center for Visual Cultures, Department of English, and the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies


December 8, 2021
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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