Professor of Philosophy
She teaches and writes on aesthetics and feminist, critical race, postcolonial, and political theory. Her new book, “Arts of Address: Being Alive to Language and the World,” will be published by Columbia University Press in 2019. Roelofs is the author of The Cultural Promise of the Aesthetic (Bloomsbury 2014). Her articles have appeared in journals such as Hypatia, Confluencia, differences, M/m-Print-Plus-Platform, and Texte zur Kunst, and anthologies such as Race, Philosophy, and Film (Routledge, 2013) and The Routledge Companion to the Philosophy of Race (2018). She has recently completed a second book manuscript on address titled “Aesthetics, Address, and the Making of Culture.” The guest editor of Aesthetics and Race, a special volume of Contemporary Aesthetics (2009), she is co-editing an anthology on Black Aesthetics, on which she co-organized a symposium at Hampshire. She is also co-authoring a book on aesthetics and temporality in Latin America.
As poetry, photos, memes, tunes, activist happenings, performances, and news go viral on digital platforms like Twitter and YouTube and on personal blogs, the question arises as to what kind of high-speed (or slow) politics they enact. Fast fiction, in short, enables flare politics and calls for flash philosophy-a kind of philosophical thought that critically reflects on temporality and its links to modern, colonial, gendered constellations of power. Scrutinizing speedy productions in multiple media, investigating aphoristic or fragmentary genres of philosophy in work by Friedrich Nietzsche, Walter Benjamin, Theodor Adorno, Gloria Anzaldua, and Fred Moten, and examining approaches to temporal disjunction, e.g. by Wendy Hui Kyong Chun, Nelly Richard, and Elizabeth Grosz, this course asks what a philosophical language looks like that reaches across art, the every day, and political life, and engages our historically and politically fashioned senses and imaginings. Students will submit flash-postings.
This course studies the entwinements between power, collectivity, and freedom. Beginning with views of power in political life by Marx, Nietzsche, Foucault, Deleuze, Mbembe, and Honig, we will explore dimensions of agency and investigate collective dimensions of freedom through theorists such as Arendt, Brown, Cavarero, Mouffe, Butler (on assembly); Ahmed (on emotion), Crenshaw, Quijano, Chakrabarty and Esposito. Students will gain experience with fundamental concepts and perspectives in social and political philosophy, which will inform a research project. (keywords: philosophy, social and political theory, social difference, modernity)
What links aesthetics to gender and sexuality, along with other intersecting differences? Course in philosophy, feminist studies, and art theory examines notions such as disinterested attention, queering, and aesthetic experience, and invites students to ask what broadened aesthetic perspectives on things like information flows, food, humor, activism, everyday objects, agency, the erotic, and the state might look like. Discussion of feminist art practices alongside theoretical texts (from Hume, Kant & Adorno to contemporary interlocutors).
Recognizing the centrality of aesthetic frameworks and concepts to black thought and cultural production, this course examines conceptual frames and artistic/literary strategies that shape the burgeoning field of Black Aesthetics. What role do evolving notions of aesthetics, politics, and blackness play in shifts that are occurring in the field? How do philosophical understandings of aliveness, play, satire, gender, race, queering, and the everyday take form in current practices and theories? What new questions arise? Artworks in multiple media and traditions will be considered. The course is cosponsored by the Ethics and the Common Good Program and may involve visits by guest speakers. Theorists we will read will include Du Bois, Wynter, Davis Taylor, Hall, Lorde, Shockley, Moten, Wilson, English, and Quashie, among others.