Northwestern University

Fri 12:00 PM

Aesthetics and Political Action in Egypt

When: Friday, May 20, 2016
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM  

Where: 1902 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Jeff Cernucan   847.467.2770

Group: Buffett Institute for Global Studies

Category: Global & Civic Engagement


Jessica Winegar examines the acts of aesthetic ordering, such as garbage collection and beautification campaigns, that dominated Egyptian protest and civic activity around the time of former president Mubarak’s downfall. Examining such acts of aesthetic ordering reveals the tensions at the heart of many political movements for social change, especially as people attempt to enact their utopic visions in public space. The precarity of both middle classness and utopic schemes of revolution render aesthetics a key battleground of political action.

Jessica Winegar is a sociocultural anthropologist whose work investigates how people articulate understandings of history and political-economic change through cultural production and consumption. Her 2015 book, Anthropology’s Politics: Disciplining the Middle East, uses Middle East anthropology as a lens through which to examine how national and global political-economic forces have enabled and constrained academic work from World War II through the War on Terror.

This is part of the Buffett Institute Faculty & Fellows Colloquium. Find it on Facebook.

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