Daughters of Chaos: Practice, Discipline, A Life will be the 8th international Deleuze Studies conference, and the first to be held in Sweden. The conference will take place between the 29th of June and the 1st of July 2015, and will be preceded by a ‘Deleuze Camp’, which will be hosted as a preliminary intensive research seminar and series of workshops between 22nd – 26th June 2015.
Daughters of Chaos: Practice, Discipline, A Life: Deleuze Studies 2015 is funded by a Swedish Research Council FORMAS conference grant http://www.formas.se/en/ and supported by the following institutions:
- Architecture in Effect, Strong Research Environment in Architecture, Theory and Methodology, funded by the Swedish Research Council FORMAS. http://architectureineffect.se
- ResArc: Swedish Research School in Architecture, a collaboration between the schools of Architecture at KTH, Chalmers, LTH, and Umeå University, funded by the Swedish Research Council FORMAS. http://resarc.se/about/
- Konstfack: University College of Arts Craft and Design http://www.konstfack.se/en/
- Department of English, Stockholm University http://www.english.su.se
- Department of Youth and Child Studies, Stockholm University http://www.buv.su.se/english/
- Department of Philosophy, School of Culture and Education, Södertörn University http://www.sh.se
- Stockholm University of the Arts http://www.uniarts.se
- Critical Studies, School of Architecture, KTH (Royal Institute of Technology) Stockholm
‘Daughters of chaos’ describes the filial role with which Gilles Deleuze and his collaborator Félix Guattari have anointed the disciplines of philosophy, science and art, suggesting that disciplinary formations and their respective practices enable us to make sense of the diverse cultural and natural phenomena of local environments in relation to collective global concerns. “In short,” Deleuze and Guattari explain “chaos has three daughters, depending on the plane that cuts through it: these are the chaoids – art, science, and philosophy – as forms of thought or creation.” The disciplines of philosophy, science and art are said to be the disciplines that enable the capture of what Deleuze and Guattari, in reference to the ancient Greek notion, call chaos. The daughters support the emergence of order out of a fundamental chaos; they are like guides who assist us to make sense of things and to act together to manifest new subjectivities, social relations and environments. The three disciplines specifically cited by Deleuze and Guattari do not exhaust the broad range of territories of knowledge that the legacy of Deleuze, and also Guattari, has infiltrated. Rather than emphasizing just three disciplines we assume instead a multi-disciplinary matrix with many distinct but also many overlapping concerns. Daughters of Chaos, the 8th International Deleuze Studies conference, proposes to create a space of encounter between diverse disciplines by placing an emphasis on those habits, refrains and practices by which disciplines achieve their consistency, in turn enabling the sustainable work of composing new worlds to be undertaken.
The proposed subtitle of the conference is: practice, discipline, a life, by which we hope to draw attention to a contemporary ‘ecology’ of research practices all with their distinct requirements and obligations and environmental concerns. We also suggest that a practice is composed of habits and assumptions that are built up in relation to a specific research environment, in relation to both natural and cultural constraints and forces. That is to say, when addressing the ‘environment’ this pertains not only to natural settings or our constructed urban, rural, or other environments of human and non-human inhabitation, but also to social and work-based environments, and how these impact on mental or subjective health. We understand that ‘practice’ suggests an activity that is necessarily repeated so that experience and expertise can be achieved, but many implicit assumptions are also maintained where practices become overly habitual and resistant to critique or else curtailed by their local environments. Practices, once established and broadly recognized, inform a specific discipline into which researchers are effectively initiated and in which they are required to position themselves and their research work in order to argue for their specific contribution. Discipline also suggests the way in which researchers are ‘disciplined’ or encouraged to behave in one way rather than another, to direct their research questions here rather than there, and are rewarded accordingly, for instance, with grants and research positions. A life is the most elusive of the concepts we draw upon in our subtitle, but also the place where it turns out that everything is at stake. What constitutes a life; how it comes to be biopolitically measured at the scale of populations; how life is constrained and/or activated, also ‘disciplined’; the ways in which life is becoming increasingly captured by forms of intellectual property ownership; and crucially, how diverse instantiations of life are played out in different environmental contexts, these are questions that touch upon all the disciplines, especially in terms of ethico-aesthetic approaches to research.
With this event, composed of conference and camp, we propose to take the challenge of ‘transdisciplinarity’ seriously, both in its relation to practices and in its promise to transform disciplines prepared to encounter one another.