Theme: Regimes of Visibility
Modernity may be described as the triumph of the visible over the invisible. We are, however, surrounded by hidden and invisible things. When we describe what exists in the world, we take into consideration a host of beings, forces and objects that are immediately perceptible, and some that are not. Notions of spirits or gods may spring immediately to mind, but certain disorders or diseases can be termed “invisible” if there is no diagnostic category for them, and the same holds true for social collectives or forms of labor that are not officially recognized by the state or mainstream discourses.
So how do we see the invisible? What becomes seen, and what becomes unseen? Is the unseen automatically invisible?
There has been a recent proliferation of debates on the seen and unseen, the real and unreal, and the power of social classification in creating reality. This workshop brings together scholars working on these topics from a variety of theoretical approaches, from those asking how do we see things, to what is there to be seen, to (how) are we sure that we are seeing and seeks to address the meaningfulness and power of the hidden and invisible in the contemporary world.