Centre for the Study of Theory and Criticism

Theory Sessions

The Theory Sessions, a student initiative, serves as a forum for the exchange of ideas to promote interdisciplinary research in theory at the Centre and across campus. Students and faculty present their papers and engage in spirited discussions, with contributions from interested Centre scholars as well as faculty and students from other fields and disciplines at Western. Topics have included cannibalism, camp, vaginas, anarchism, bioeconomics, and photography.


The Centre for the Study of Theory and Criticism presents

'Correspondences' of Modernity:
Adorno, Benjamin and the Dialectical (Materialist) Method

A Theory Session with Jeremy Arnott (CSTC)


Domenic Hutchins (CSTC)
Vladimir Cristache (CSTC)

Friday, February 26

Somerville House
Room 2348

All are welcome.

Abstract: Beginning with Benjamin's (1938-39) writings on Baudelaire (and Adorno's infamous response), I will stage a methodological confrontation between these two thinkers--analyzing their respective (and intertwined) notions of dialectics and historiography. This (dis) correspondence will emerge as a fundamental theoretical dispute regarding 'Historical Materialism' and the dignity of 'Critique' as such--questions which remain pertinent in our present moment. 

 Consider volunteering to be a respondent for any Theory Session that interests you.  To respond to a paper it’s not necessary to write a paper of your own; nor do you have to be an expert in the field. All that is asked is that you be willing to raise a problem or offer a comment based on the paper that’s just been given. The speaker will provide you with a copy of the paper a week in advance. To volunteer, e‐mail Mary McLevey or Grant Dempsey.