Nov. 18-19 2021

Mimetic Inclinations: Gender, Philosophy, and Politics with Adriana Cavarero

Cavarero is one of the most influential voices in contemporary feminist philosophy today.  Her protean work in political theory, continental philosophy, literary theory, ethics, aesthetics, and feminism does not restrict mimesis to a representational/ bad copy model. Cavarero troubles the autonomous subject, placing into crises the commitment that philosophy has to a vertical metaphysics.  In doing so, she urges new generations of feminist theorists, critics, and artists to explore the theoretical and creative potential of what we call “mimetic inclinations,” including imitation, mimicry, identification, simulation, empathy, and affective contagion, among other manifestations of what the ancients called, enigmatically, mimēsis. Our wager is that thus reframed, mimesis is internal to a relational conception of subjectivity inclined toward alterity that informs the entirety of Cavarero’s thought and has remained largely unexplored so far. The aim of this conference is to bring a plurality of mimetic inclinations into dialogue with Cavarero, who will be participating in this symposium.