Richard Shusterman, March 7, 2014

(Richard Shusterman discussing his performance video works)

On Friday, March 7, at 7:30 p.m. Counterpath hosted philosopher and artist Richard Shusterman for a screening of his video and performance work.

Exhorting philosophy as a way of life, Socrates eschewed the practice of philosophical writing as a corrupting distraction. But writing soon became philosophy’s privileged medium. To what extent and in what ways can philosophy take advantage of new media technology — not simply through the digital production of articles, books, and blogs but also through visual media?

Experimentation in visual media seems especially appropriate for the philosophical field of aesthetics. Tonight philosopher Richard Shusterman, internationally renowned for his work in pragmatist aesthetics and somaesthetics, will present examples from his recent work in the medium of video as part of his continued efforts to revive the idea of the philosophical life while expanding philosophy’s reach and public.

The videos take two very different forms: experimental performance art (in collaboration with the Parisian artist Yann Toma) and a three-part educational documentary concerning Shusterman’s philosophical work and its inspirational sources (directed by the Polish filmmaker Pawel Kuczynski).  This video work has been exhibited in Europe but not yet in the U.S. After introducing a sampling from both genres, Shusterman will engage the audience for Q&A.



Richard Shusterman is the D.F. Schmidt Eminent Scholar in the Humanities and Director of The Center for Body, Mind and Culture at Florida Atlantic University. He is author of Body Consciousness: A Philosophy of Mindfulness and Somaesthetics and Thinking Through the Body (both from Cambridge University Press), and Pragmatist Aesthetics (published in 15 languages). In May 2012 he curated the Paris art show Aesthetic Transactions in conjunction with an international conference at the Sorbonne to mark the 20th anniversary of Pragmatist Aesthetics. The French government has honored him as a Chevalier de l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques.