The Atrocity Organization: JG Ballard & the Technologies of Psychopathology Management
Friday November 13th, 2009.
School of Business and Management
University of London, Queen Mary
Sponsored by the Standing Conference on Organizational Symbolism.
A kind of waiting madness, like a state of undeclared war, haunted the office buildings of the business park. – J.G. Ballard, Super-Cannes
This workshop will engage with the work of British novelist and science fiction writer JG Ballard (15 November 1930 – 19 April 2009). As an author Ballard developed one of the most dynamic (and disturbing) exploration of collective psychopathology, excesses in organizational life, and the collapsing of the Western imaginary. From the fetish of the car crash to obscene hidden violence of the business park, internment camps to masochist fantasies directed through the mediated form of Ronald Reagan’s body, Ballard’s work ventures into territories that are disconcerting to explore, but from which one can learn a great deal. Rather than assuming that disorder and excess is a condition that management and organization must respond to, perhaps what is really psychopathological is the desire to impose order upon an inherently ungovernable and excessive condition.
The influence and popularity of Ballard’s writing, aptly demonstrated by existence of ‘Ballardian’ as an adjective, enacts what Carl Rhodes describes as a ‘critique in culture’ (as opposed to a critique of culture). This workshop engages with the form of critique and its development through circulation that has been activated by Ballard’s work, which is likely to be particularly intense at the moment and in the near future because of his recent death.
Possible topics for consideration could include:
Ballard’s bestiary & petting zoo monsters
[list=]Technological dystopianism & the radical imagination[/list]
[list=]Science fiction & organizational analysis[/list]
[list=]The dark side of the multitude[/list]
[list=]Libidinal economies and immaterial parasites[/list]
[list=]Avant-garde arts & the fetish of suffering[/list]
[list=]Excessive media flows & the pathologies of immaterial labor[/list]
[list=]The violence of affective states & conditioning[/list]
[list=]Autodestructive & homicidal art[/list]
[list=]Reagan, Obama, and the mediation of the political body[/list]
Please send proposals to Stevphen Shukaitis (email@example.com). Deadline for proposals: September 30th, 2009.
Organized by Stevphen Shukaitis (Autonomedia / University of Essex) and Peter Fleming (University of London, Queen Mary).
Call for papers......
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