“Was not their mistake once more bred of the life of slavery that they had been living?—a life which was always looking upon everything, except mankind, animate and inanimate—‘nature,’ as people used to call it—as one thing, and mankind as another, it was natural to people thinking in this way, that they should try to make ‘nature’ their slave, since they thought ‘nature’ was something outside them” — William Morris

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Thank you Jeffrey Cohen

What an incredibly nice time I've had at George Washington University, courtesy of Jeffrey Cohen. I just finished a delightful breakfast chat with him and Lowell Duckert. These scholars exemplify what it means to be a scholar for real, and with such sincerity and sweetness. Thank you sirs.

Yesterday was an extraordinary feast of knowledge courtesy of MEMSI. Bruce Holsinger was there, my old mate! And Jane Bennett frequents these medievalist gatherings--how lovely to see her as ever. Art historian Anne Harris gave a pathbreaking talk about objects and echoes. Kellie Robertson brought the Aristotelian noise and Steve Mentz did something very similar to what I've been thinking about concerning the Anthropocene--you start to see how geological periods would better be described via catastrophes in general.

The graduate students in Professor Cohen's class were extremely intelligent and lively. It's a credit to the momentum he's built around MEMSI and these courses--you could feel his good energy everywhere. Great great day. I'm lucky to have been taken under their wing.

1 comment:

Steve Mentz said...

It was a great event! Here's my bloggy post-game thoughts if you'd like them: http://stevementz.com/contact-ecologies-at-gwmemsi/