Graduate Colloquium Planning Committee:

Kevin Kearney (English)
Rahul Mukherjee (Film and Media Studies)
Kelly Kawar (English)
Allison Schifani (Comparative Literature)
Dana Solomon (English)
Katie Kelp-Stebbins (Comparative Literature)
Lindsay Thomas (English)

From the Speculative Futures Home Page:

As the United States recalibrates its global position as an economic, military, and political actor in the twenty–first century, it is an opportune time to interrogate the various speculative practices that are seen to have jeopardized or destabilized futures worldwide. While the conversations about such matters as national security, financial speculation, and ecological and technological catastrophe have been largely the purview of policy analysts and governmental agencies, we propose an interdisciplinary approach to questions of risk and uncertainty that engages with imaginative and open-ended forms of speculation in fiction, videogames, art, and film. To this end, we seek to bring together public intellectuals, scholars, media practitioners, and artists — in addition to technical experts, analysts, policymakers — so as to mobilize critical speculation on the spectrum of possible futures.

What role do risk calculations play in confronting growing uncertainties? What security measures forecast “futures” in the face of radical uncertainty? Are such measures adequate, threatening, and⁄or necessary? What speculative practices might be put into play to imagine futures differently?

Critical Issues in America is administered each year by the College of Letters & Science, University of California, Santa Barbara, to provide funds for educational and public programming to support courses, conferences, and related programs that bring together faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, community members, and visiting scholars or public officials to discuss an important topic of contemporary concern or significance.

Main Sponsor: College of Letters & Sciences

UCSB Arts & Lectures, The Center for Nanotechnology in Society, The Orfalea Center for Global and International Studies, The Center for Information, Technology and Society, The Carsey–Wolf Center, The American Cultures and Global Contexts Center (Department of English), The Interdisciplinary Humanities Center, Transcriptions (Department of English), Department of English Department of Film and Media Studies, The Media Arts and Technology Program, Department of Computer Science.

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