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Charles Shepherdson
English, SUNY

Institutions of Emotion: Aesthetics, Ethics, and the “Catharsis of Pity and Fear” in Aristotle and Tragedy

Wednesday, February 18 / 5 PM / Humanities 210

Charles Shepherdson is the author of Vital Signs: Nature, Culture, Psychoanalysis (Routledge, 2000), Lacan and the Limits of Language (Fordham, 2008), and The Epoch of the Body (Stanford, in progress). Arguing for greater attention to disciplinary differences in the construction of knowledge, he explores productive tensions among literary, psychoanalytic, and philosophical knowledge. His current work, Emotion and Esthetics: A Genealogy, focuses on three historical moments involving a privileged pair of emotions: Greek tragedy at the moment of emerging democracy (pity and fear); Kantian esthetics at the end of the Enlightenment (fear and respect); and Freud and Heidegger at the threshold of contemporary thought, where anxiety replaces fear in a manner decisive for French post-structuralism.

Sponsored by the Psychoanalysis & Sexuality Research Cluster

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Last modified: December 11, 2008
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