Writer, poet, scholar, activist and filmmaker Frank B. Wilderson III, presents a lecture entitled, Punishment Park and the Limits of Gramscian Logic.
Variations in structural violence mark the essential point of departure for theorizing the disparate positions of worker and slave in civil society. For Antonio Gramsci’s worker, consent is only supplemented by force held in reserve; for Orlando Patterson and Afro-Pessimism, on the other hand, Blacks are subject to violence without reservations. The diegesis and cinematic techniques of Peter Watkins’ Punishment Park (Peter Watkins 1971) convert this dynamic to the screen. Its spectacles of murdered and mutilated Blacks rejuvenate the border between death and subjectivity, capacitating non-Black women, workers, and prisoners to ultimately recoup their common Humanity through recourse to narratives of filiation. Dr. Wilderson discusses these ideas in his talk.
Dr. Wilderson served as an elected official in the African National Congress during South Africa’s transition from apartheid and was a member of the ANC’s armed wing Umkhonto We Sizwe. His books and films include Incognegro: a Memoir of Exile and Apartheid (2008); Red, White, & Black: Cinema and the Structure of U.S. Antagonisms (2010); and Reparations...Now.
Dr. Wilderson holds an A.B. from Dartmouth; an MFA from Columbia University, as well as an MA and Ph.D. from the Rhetoric Department, Film Studies Program at UC Berkeley.
This event is sponsored by the UIC Department of Art History.