Conferences and Talks

Weak Translation. 
Translation Studies Hub, University of Washington, November 2019.
Exploring lower thresholds of plausibility and admissibility for “translation” in a range of literary texts and practices.

The Aesthetics of Multidirectional Memory
Western Washington Gallery, WWU, November 2019.
In converation with Robert Sniderman regarding his exhibition Lost in Jüdischer Friedhof Weißensee.

Multidirectional Planetary Memory: Remembering Genocide in the Anthropocene.
GSA, Portland, OR, Ocotber 2019
Remembering Auschwitz and the Middle Passage in the Anthropocene, as enacted in the poem “Niedrigwasser” by Paul Celan.

Zugrunde Gehen: Heterotopias of Inundation From Bohemia to Drexciya. 
ASLE, Davis, CA, July 2019 
Contending with inundation in a dark ecopoetics of “going under”in Ingeborg Bachmann (”Bohemia Lies By the Sea”), Paul Celan (”Low Tide”), Alexis Pauline Gumbs (M Archive: After the End of the World), Drexciya (The Quest), and Otolith (Hydra Decapita).

Earthly Impressions: Book, Text, and Archive in the Anthropocene
University of Washington, March 2019
Co-organized a symposium in book history and the environmental humanities. See program here.

“Dark Geology: The Arcades Project, Urban Media, and Earth Archives.”
Emory University, March 2018.
The Arcades Project as geological archive.

“Stranded Futures: On Literature and Maladaptation.”
University of Toronto, April 2018.
On some grey ecologies in W.G. Sebald’s The Rings of Saturn.

“Forms of Survival.”
UC Davis, May 2018
Through readings of Benjamin and Brecht, a consideration of how “survival” is reduced to something that pertains to and obtains for the inorganic—or rather how it expands beyond the distinction between life and nonlife.

“The Epigram at the End of the World: On the Possibility of Commentary in Capitalist Ruins.”
ACLA, Los Angeles, March 2018.
The difficulty of maintaining literary and philological projects amidst historical emergencies, as modeled by Benjamin’s commentary on Brecht’s epigrammatic poems.

“The Song of the Eaarth: On Elemental Accretion” New York University, February 2018.
For a Symposium on the Elements, a talk on how the climate-changed planet “Eaarth” (Bill McKibben) serves as an elemental medium in texts ranging from Goethe’s On Granite to the BBC television play The Stone Tape.

“Stranded Objects: On Maladaptation in Sebald’s The Rings of Saturn.”
GSA, Atlanta, October 2017.
Despite how cultures of knowledge since the nineteenth century emphasize the situatedness of life, a countertradition that emphasizes the mal- and undapted is evident in Sebald’s novels.

“Lapidary Style: Epigrams for the Anthropocene.”
ACLA, Utrecht, NL, July 2017.
How the uncanny vitality of the inorganic, as modeled in and by lapidary poetic language, might offer one of the more tenable forms of survival today.

“Walser & Co.”
Glass Box Gallery, Seattle, April 2017.
A talk about not working in the novels of Robert Walser for the lecture series This Might Not Work.

“Variations on Movement: A Counter-disciplinary Lecture.”
University of Washington, March 2017.
A performance lecture with Michael Swaine in the Department of Germanics

“Critical Climate Change: The Humanities in a Time of Mass Extinction.”
University of Washington, October 2016.
How the humanities address and contend with the sixth extinction, as part of the Performing Arts Lecture Series.

“Epigrams for the Anthropocene: Writing After Extinction”
GSA, San Diego., October 2016.
On the resilience of language in times of environmental catastrophe.

“Can the Anthropocene Be Exhibited?”
The Exploratorium, September 2016.
A conversation of the possibility of observing and exhibiting the Anthropocene - and if it is possible to observe, see, think, listen, or read at earth-magnitude. 

“Field Guides to the Anthropocene.”
California College for the Arts, October 2015.
On the return to, and development of, the field guide genre in the Anthropocene 

“The Disturbance Ecologies of W.G. Sebald.”
GSA, Washington D.C., October 2015.
How sites of environmental disturbance in Sebald’s writing serve as landscapes of a more-than-human future that is other than merely the legacy of anthropogenic destruction.

“Psychogeophysics: The Deep Time of the City.” The Exploratorium, September 2015.
A talk on the speculative study of urban geology- of the city as geological force.