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 Department of English and the Centre for the Study of Theory and Criticism present

Film Screening and Discussion


Directed by Joanna Callaghan
Written by Joanna Callaghan and Martin McQuillan


Love in the Post is inspired by the book The Post Card by Jacques Derrida. Like the book, the film plays with fact and fiction, weaving together the stories of a professor of literature and a film director, alongside insights from critics and philosophers....

Theo Marks works in a university department that is soon to be closed. His wife Sophie, enigmatic and distant is in analysis. Filmmaker Joanna struggles to complete a film about The Post Card. These people are set on a collision course prompted by a series of letters that will change their lives.

The film features a never before seen interview with Derrida, alongside contributions from Geoff Bennington, J. Hillis Miller, Sam Weber, Catherine Malabou and Ellen Burt.

Love in the Post is an experimentation with the notion of what deconstruction would feel, look, and sound like in a cinematic medium. The film premiered at the 4th Annual Derrida Today Conference in New York City in May/June of 2014.

Please contact Diana Samu-Visser (dsamuvis@uwo.ca), Grant Dempsey (gdempse2@uwo.ca), or Mary McLevey (mmclevey@uwo.ca) if you have any questions.


"The Politics and Poetics of Exhaustion: Bifo Contra Accelerationism"

a Theory Session with Dr. Michael Gardiner

Rick Ramrattan (CSTC)


Friday, November 27th
3:30 PM
Somerville House, Room 2348

All are welcome.

Abstract: The global financial crisis beginning in 2008 has encouraged the revitalization of a wide spectrum of Leftist theorizing, but arguably the most audacious is that of 'accelerationism'. Kick-started by the appearance of Alex Williams and Nick Srnicek's '#Accelerate: Manifesto for an Accelerationist Politics' in 2013, Left-accelerationism sees the intensification of certain tendencies in late capitalist society as a way to escape its gravitational orbit, allowing for a 'repurposing' of the very material infrastructure of capitalism itself, to universally emancipatory ends. This talk will engage accelerationism's key concepts and premises with a thinker of the post-Autonomist tradition, Franco 'Bifo' Berardi. Contrary to Williams and Srnicek, Bifo asserts that acceleration per se only augments the power and dynamism of capital. And, whereas accelerationists preach a bold 'Prometheanism' premised on the systematic application of the (in)human imaginary, 'neo-rationalism', and the harnessing of an ever-expanding technological prowess, Bifo posits instead a 'post-politics' of ironic detachment, aesthetic cultivation, and 'therapy' in response to the systemic violence, unbridled competitiveness, and mass psychopathologies of our age. Contrasting Bifo and accelerationism clarifies each of their assumptions and core arguments, and points the way to a more nuanced perspective on these issues, in a contemporaneous moment marked in equal measure by inestimable threat and liberatory promise.


 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.