Towards Xenofeminism:
Gender, Technology, and Reason in the 21st Century

Instructor: Laboria Cuboniks Guests: Virginia Barratt, Patricia Reed, & Ben Woodard Credit: 1 Module: 1 Date & Time: Fridays: November 21st & 28th; December 5th & 12 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM EST; 7:00 PM - 9:30 PM AST; 11:00 PM - 1:30 AM GMT; 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM GMT+10

‘Leaving aside the traumatic, self-proclaimed POST of their alumni, what Deleuze and Foucault teach us is how to transit, how to enter and exit modernity in many ways and from many perspectives. What was awoken by the second half of the twentieth century – an age of the TRANS, if ever there was one – is better called transmodernity […] the prefix TRANS seems, therefore, far more indicative of our condition (and the mathematical condition) than a premature POST.’ – Fernando Zalamea

DESCRIPTION: In an era characterised by ubiquitous technological mediation, abstraction, and unprecedented complexity, invocations of authenticity, organicity, or a ‘return to nature’ are either politically untenable (as possibilities available only to a small and privileged portion of society), problematically ineffective on a global scale or, quite simply, foreclosed. Striking out from the conviction that a retreat from technological modernity is neither possible nor desirable, this course will grapple with the unique socio-political problematic facing twenty-first century gender politics from a transfeminist perspective, focusing on the emancipatory potential of technology, biological and ontological alienation as liberating vectors, issues related to notions of selfhood and scalability, and an examination of the historically fraught relationship between feminism and rationality. ———-

Moving from a critical to a constructive feminism for which the future remains open as a site of radical recomposition, key historical precedents to the above nexus of ideas will be examined alongside contemporary texts with the aim of sketching out a set of positions responsive to the demands made by twenty-first century conditions on any realistically future-oriented transfeminist political project.

REQUIREMENT: This course will be structured as a reading group with texts set for each session. Students will be expected to prepare a presentation related to one of the texts dealt with in the course, lead a group discussion on this material, and publish a post on the course blog. Participation in the online discussions will be assessed and a final assignment consisting of a 2500 word essay on a topic agreed upon with the instructors will be due after the final session.

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