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Critical Poetics: Writing with Care

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk


Critical Poetics: Writing with Care

Delphine Grass (Lancaster), Helena Hunter (NTU), Maria Gil Ulldemolins (Hasselt) and Francis Whorall-Campbell (CCA Derry~Londonderry)

‘What is care?’ asks María Puig de la Bellacasa (2017): ‘Is it an affection? A moral obligation? Work? A burden? A joy? Something we can learn or practice? Something we just do?’ Recent social, political and environmental crises have brought new attention to these questions, and to the ways that we perceive and experience forms of care. To what degree is writing with care an ethical as well as an aesthetic imperative? What might this work achieve in the face of global trauma, social inequality and environmental devastation? And how might the particular pressures of the contemporary moment destabilise received forms and genres and invite alternative ways of thinking and writing? Marking the publication of a special issue of The Contemporary Journal entitled ‘Writing with Care’, this research seminar features short talks from four interdisciplinary researchers who explore the ways that writing, art, criticism, or a combination of these, might help us attend to manifold, interconnected and collective care responsibilities.

Delphine Grass will examine the politics of motherhood, attention and national indifference in the context of migration and climate change through the lens of Simone Weil, Hans/Jean Arp and children’s care games. Maria Gil Ulldemolins will share work inspired by Swiss artist Heidi Bucher, reflecting on the relationship between a medicine, waiting and care. Francis Whorall-Campbell will explore queer ecologies and more-than-human forms of care in poetry, and Helena Hunter will present a film exploring tree spirit beliefs in the Philippines and how these intersect with colonisation, deforestation and bird decline.

External organisation

NameNottingham Trent University
LocationBurton Street
CityNottingham, NG1 4BU
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom