This seminar is open to the public.
An accelerated rhythm of social, economic, political, and personal change in this new century obliges us to innovate in order to understand the dynamics, and to participate in productive and ethical ways. How does one think innovatively when existing concepts describe existing forms and activities rather than new possibilities?
This seminar serves as a venue for graduate students to meet monthly to discuss the work of cultural agents and the language that is used to describe creative and intellectual advances. Visiting speakers such as Jay Critchley, Pier Luigi Sacco, and Theresa Betancourt will be invited to join students’ investigation of the use of creativity to generate new concepts and to name novel ideas and perceptions. Drawing on the work of such theorists as Immanuel Kant and Raymond Williams, the seminar will consider the celebration of art (as Kant surmised) as the medium of communication for ideas and feelings that are so new and still formless they do not yet have names. Particular words and new uses of words represent advances in scholarship because they are forged to signal a novel idea or way of thinking. During monthly meetings, this seminar will develop an interdisciplinary lexicon to examine the work of cultural agents, considering scholarly investigation and practical problem solving.