Disorder – Symposium and Exhibition

The Sydney anthropology Symposium this year addresses the theme of disorder. As observers and analysts of the social, there is a tendency for anthropologists to look for underlying orders in the sometimes puzzling phenomena we encounter in the field. This Symposium asks whether the enduring reality might, in fact, be disorder and what the implications of this might be for our practice. We also ask how the concept of disorder works in the social worlds we observe: how marginal people are understood as pathologically disordered, for instance, or the impact diagnoses of political and economic disorder have on what we conceive of as probable, possible or permissible. 

EP01We are excited to announce the Franz Boas Professor of Anthropology at Columbia University, Elizabeth A. Povinelli, as our keynote speaker, with her address “Might Be Something (Again): Order, disorder and the quasi-event.”

Povinelli is renowned for pushing the boundaries of anthropology into philosophy and vice versa. Her most recent work focuses of the governance of the otherwise in Late Liberalism and the fracturing of everyday worlds through what she calls quasi-events. She has published four books, the most recent Economies of Abandonment (Duke, 2011) and numerous essays. She is also a member of the Karrabing Film Collective.

Povinelli’s address joins an exciting program of speakers, performances and an adjacent artistic rendering of the theme of disorder to be held at Verge gallery (more info).

Registrations are now open, and we encourage broad participation from within anthropology and beyond for a lively exchange.