INSIDE/OUT 2020 Lecture: Mountains & Desire featuring Dr Margret Grebowicz
In this lecture Margret Grebowicz will focus specifically on cultural or semiotic exhaustion. What do mountains mean if not places to be conquered? What kind of being is one whose life projects no longer take the form of reaching the next measurable peak? The recent rise of interest in climbing – active, in the form of commercialized mountaineering and climbing walls in university gyms and corporate offices, and passive, in the form of an explosion of mountaineering literature and visual culture in corporate advertising, cinema, and social media – is not just a fad, but a deeper cultural symptom, for which I propose something like a diagnosis. The high altitude climber has become the favorite figure of corporate success, but at the same time, the most recent events seem to point to something like an end or limit of climbing itself—from the untimely and unexpected death of Ueli Steck, considered by many the best mountaineer in the history of the sport, to the enormous success of _Free Solo_, the 2018 documentary about Alex Honnold’s historic rope-less climb of El Cap, to the recent public outrage over the degradation of Everest. This is the tension Margaret will explore with the help of her concept of “peak climbing,” which provides a framework for thinking about the exhaustion of environments on multiple levels. Margret Grebowicz is the author of _Whale Song_ (Bloomsbury), _The National Park to Come_ (Stanford), and _Why Internet Porn Matters_ (Stanford), and co-author of _Beyond the Cyborg: Adventures with Donna Haraway_ (Columbia). Her most recent articles have appeared in _the minnesota review_, _Environmental Humanities_, _The Routledge Handbook of Gender and Environment_, and _The Atlantic_. She has held professorships at the University of Houston-Downtown and Goucher College. She currently teaches philosophy and environmental humanities at the University of Tyumen, Russia, and is an affiliate of the University of Silesia, Poland. Her book in progress, _Mountains and Desire_, will be published by Repeater Books. About The INSIDE/OUT Lecture Series The INSIDE/OUT series [https://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/leeds-school-of-arts/inside-out-lecture-series/] offers historical, theoretical and critical discussions about subjects and themes from numerous creative fields, including art, architecture, design, fashion, film, music and performing arts. Organised by Professors Simon Morris and Rob Shail from the Leeds School of Arts, the series offers a platform for internationally recognised practitioners to come and talk about their ideas and work. Events are open to all.
Wednesday 01st April 2020 - 01:00pm