The conference examines the various ways of narrating—witnessing—the condition of being indebted and the historical rise of indebtedness as a mode of governance, each narrative entailing decisions about justice, ethics, politics.
Debt itself is also considered as a narrative, i.e., a performative fiction that organizes time by linking past, present, and future in a diegetic chain. Money, if we define it with Deleuze and Guattari as “the means for rendering the debt infinite,” constitutes the backdrop of this economic narratology.
The conference, which took place on April 5 and 6, 2019 in Pembroke Hall, was co-organized by Peter Szendy and Emmanuel Bouju and presented as part of the Economies of Aesthetics Initiative, the conference was co-sponsored by the Institut Universitaire de France, the Université Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris 3, Brown University’s Humanities Initiative Programming Fund, the Cogut Institute for the Humanities, and the Departments of Anthropology, Comparative Literature, English, French Studies, German Studies, Modern Culture and Media, and Philosophy.
Sessions were moderated by Peter Szendy (panels 1 and 8), Suzanne Stewart-Steinberg (panel 2), Adi Ophir (panel 3), Emmanuel Bouju (panels 4 and 8), Michelle Clayton (panel 5), Amanda Anderson (panel 6), and Timothy Bewes (panel 7).