March 12-14, 1998, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas
"The physical moment tells our knowledge that suffering ought not
to be, that things should be different. 'Woe speaks Go.'" --Theodor
"When women explore their social roles, if the issue of violence
does not arise, the workshop methodology is not addressing the issue of
"I'm not gonna stand on the stage and be Tipper Gore, but there
is such a thing as good taste."--Spike Lee
Drucilla Cornell (author of The Philosophy
of the Limit, The Imaginary Domain)
Mary Karr (author of The Liars' Club)
A round table discussion on Theory, Practice, and the Real Experience
of Violence Against Women in the U.S.: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives
by Sandy Barnett, Executive Director, Crisis Center; Judy Davis,
Director, Women's Resource Center; Melissa Divine, Women's Studies
instructor, Kansas Stae University, Crisis Center; Sue Zschoche,
Associate Professor of History, Kansas State University.
Conference Program (click here)
Our topic, "Violence Incorporated," responds to a need to
bring the current fascination with violence under more rigorous consideration
and understanding. We would consider, on the one hand, how the "private"
body is the corporeal site of violence in the last instance, and thus the
place where ideology is felt, and, on the other hand, the many ways
in which violence is collectively marshalled, organized, and administered,
from "organized" crime to the state to the modern corporation
itself. What, in this framework, are the roles of literature and the arts,
historically and currently? What are the imaginary effects of real violence
and the real effects of imaginary violence? Do the liberal thematization
of violence and the theoretical metaphoriz ation of violence--the joint
risks of just such a conference topic as this one--obscure the important
differences among kinds of violence. especially occluding justified violence
or revolutionary violence?
- Economic: class, poverty, violence in the workplace, imperialism,
union busting, sweatshops, "downsizing " and hostile takeovers,
incursions into indigenous cultures.
- State: power, war, torture and judicial torture, punishment,
prisons, revolution and insurrection, piracy and mutiny, terrorism and
state terrorism, military and paramilitary, police and police state, weaponry.
- Sex: rape, date rape, incest, s/m, gay bashing, pornography,
enforced prostitution, circumsion, clitoridectomy, reproduction, abortion,
antiabortion violence, infanticide, involuntary sterilization.
- Home: domestic and familial violence, child abuse, spousal abuse,
parental abuse, cults and militia organizations, household security and
- Arts and Entertainment: representations of violence, sports,
animal fighting, "ultimate" fighting, TV and film, videos, music
(punk, gangsta rap, industrial), ratings systems, Situationism and spectacle,
freak shows, recreational drugs and violence .
- Race: slavery, genocide, lynching, bashing, white supremacy,
riot and insurrection, police brutality, apartheid, border crossing, passing,
final solutions, "cleansing" and purification.
- Religion: holy war, jihad, Crusade, Inquisition, witch-hunt,
animal and human sacrifice, dogma.
- Environment: clear-cutting, over-grazing, over-fishing, pollution,
pesticides, herbicides, food industries and the politics of food production
and distribution, genetic engineering, ozone hole, extinction and millenium.
- Technology: weapons and weapons development, the military-industrial
complex and academic research, dystopia, violence and the internet, genetic
engineering, theatricalization of war, speed, health care distribution.
- Semiotic and theory: rhetorical violence, code-smashing, abjection,
taxonomy and categorization, conceptual and epistemic and discursive violence,
violence and narrativity, microviolence, the metaphorization of violence.
- Miscellaneous: class war, race war, war on poverty, "moral
equivalents" of war, war on drugs, green revolution, gangs, Bleeding
Kansas, Manifest Destiny and apologetics, book-burning and censorship,
random violence, fighting words, apocalypse.
For More Information:
Write to Director of Cultural Studies, Department
of English, Denison Hall, Kansas State
University, Manhattan, KS 66506, by mail or fax (785/532-2192).
This page was last updated on Friday, November 21, 2003.