Short title: TL68-89
Dates: 7–8 November 2019
Location: Atrium ZRC, Novi trg 2, Ljubljana
Organizing Committee: Marko Juvan, Marijan Dović, Andraž Jež (all ZRC SAZU), Aleš Gabrič (Institute of Contemporary History).
The Conference will intervene in the study of the global student and labour movement that erupted in May 1968 by systematically analyzing two largely neglected but key aspects: the dimensions of the literary and of the semi-peripheral. It will seek to analyze the ways in which critical theory and late modernist, neo-avant-garde literature were related to these protests which, opposing institutional politics of the late sixties and early seventies, struggled for the socioeconomic transformation of both the capitalist world-system and its second-world socialist alternative.
The Conference will compare developments in Paris, the core of the modern literary world-system and the global exporter of theory, and other capitalist metropolises and those in the socialist Ljubljana and other cities of literary semi-periphery that, nevertheless, kept up with France by producing a theory that came to be recognized worldwide (the Ljubljana School of Lacanian Psychoanalysis) and a literary and artistic neo-avant-garde that, together with other contributions from the global (semi)periphery, revitalized the immunized modernism of the Western core (e.g., the ludism and conceptualism of the OHO group).
As the last phase of modernism faded together with the student and labour movement, this was followed in the core of the world-system by postmodernism in aesthetics and neo-conservatism in politics, while in Slovenia and other Yugoslav republics, the last season of modernism was followed by the socioeconomic and cultural crisis of the self-management experiment, the bloody disintegration of the federation, and the emergence of independent successor states. The speakers at the Conference will address the question of how the conjuncture of 1968, whose struggle to transform the world seemed to have failed, led to that of 1989, which transformed the world by announcing the end of the utopia that had inspired 1968. (Marko Juvan and Jernej Habjan)
The programme includes 22 short papers by Slovenian and foreign participants, the opening of an exhibition entitled The Last Season of Modernism: May ’68 in Literature and Theory, and social events.
Picture 1: Student protests against the Soviet occupation of Czechoslovakia, Ljubljana, 1968 (photo: Svetozar Busić, source: Muzej novejše zgodovine Slovenije)
Picture 2: OHO: Stol, stolnica in mimoidoči (Chair, cathedral, and passersby), 1968 (source: Moderna galerija, Ljubljana)
Picture 3: The poet Tone Pavček reads the Declaration of May, 8 May 1989 (photo: Tone Stojko, source: Muzej novejše zgodovine Slovenije)
Picture 4: Novi kolektivizem, draft of the poster for Dan mladosti (The Day of Youth), 1987 (courtesy of NSK)
Write to Mojca Šorli, Conference Secretary: firstname.lastname@example.org
Marko Juvan, Head of the Conference: email@example.com
Conference proceedings and publications
The papers accepted in the reviewing process will be published as Proceedings in Slovenian language in the Studia Litteraria series (ZRC SAZU Publishing). A subsequent publication in English is planned in the Comparative Literature (Primerjalna književnost) and Slavica TerGestina indexed international journals, or in other relevant journals in agreement with editors and authors. Further information regarding the submission of articles will be given after the Conference.
Conference programme (last updated 05 Nov 19)
- Marko JUVAN. May ’68 in literature and theory: The last season of modernism (introduction) / Maj ’68 v literaturi in teoriji: Zadnja sezona modernizma (uvod)
- Gáspár Miklós TAMÁS. “Bourgeois” and “bürgerlich”: The meaning of what 1968 has turned against / »Buržoazno« in »meščansko«: Pomen tistega, proti čemur se je obrnilo leto 1968
- Jernej HABJAN. May ’68 and its philosophers: Paris, Beijing, Ljubljana / Maj ’68 in njegovi filozofi: Pariz, Peking, Ljubljana
- Miško ŠUVAKOVIĆ. Between literacy and transgression: Slovenian alternative artistic practices of OHO and NSK / Med pismenostjo in transgresijo: Slovenske alternativne umetniške prakse OHO-ja in NSK-ja
- Lev KREFT. From the marginal to the exemplary / Od marginalnega k zglednemu
- Gašper TROHA. From theatre experiment to national institutions: Lado Kralj and Dušan Jovanović on Slovenian theatre scene from the 1960s to the 1980s / Od gledaliških eksperimentov v nacionalne institucije: Lado Kralj in Dušan Jovanović na slovenskem gledališkem prizorišču od šestdesetih do osemdesetih let
- Emiliano ALESSANDRONI. Literature, dialectics, and transformation in Franco Fortini / Literatura, dialektika in transformacija pri Francu Fortiniju
- Mererid Puw DAVIES. Of mice and Mao: Anti-literary theory and avantgarde practice in West Germany, 1968 / O miših in Mau: Antiliterarna teorija in avantgardna praksa v Zahodni Nemčiji leta 1968
- Charles SABATOS. Czechoslovak “normalisation” in the fiction of Vilenica laureates / Češkoslovaška »normalizacija« v pripovedništvu nagrajencev vilenice
- Kaitlyn TUCKER SORENSON. Radical play: Ljubljana’s alternative in 1968 / Radikalna igra: Ljubljanska alternativa v letu 1968
- Irena NOVAK POPOV. The heterogeneity of Slovenian neo-avant-garde poetry / Heterogenost slovenske pesniške neoavantgarde
- Marijan DOVIĆ. “Reism” in Slovenian neo-avant-garde literature and art / »Reizem« v slovenski neoavantgardni literaturi in umetnosti
- Lev CENTRIH. Two theoretical and ideological currents in the contemporary Slovenian history / Dve teoretski in ideološki konjunkturi v sodobni slovenski zgodovini
- Aleš GABRIČ. The engagement of modernists from a political point of view / Pogled na angažiranje modernistov s političnega zornega kota
- Darja PAVLIČ. Ludism as an aesthetic and conceptual phenomenon / Ludizem kot estetski in idejni pojav
- Varja BALŽALORSKY ANTIĆ. May ’68 and the emergence of écriture féminine / Maj ’68 in vznik écriture féminine
- Andrej TOMAŽIN. The crisis of the Problemi periodical in 1968 / Kriza revije Problemi v letu 1968
- Branislava VIČAR. “Every word I write is about suicide”: Ethical, activist, and intellectual rigour in Jure Detela / »Pri vsaki besedi, ki jo napišem, gre za samomor«: Etična, aktivistična in miselna strogost Jureta Detele
- Alenka KORON. “The Long May ’68” in Slovenian prose fiction and drama / »Dolgi maj ’68« v slovenskem proznem pripovedništvu in dramatiki
- Branislav JAKOVLJEVIC. The ownership of evil: 1968, 1989, and the mainstreaming of the New Right / Lastništvo nad zlom: 1968, 1989 in nova desnica kot mainstreamovska usmeritev
- Zdravko KOBE. May ’68 and its consequences for theory: Structuralism, Maoism, neoliberalism / Maj ’68 in njegove posledice za teorijo: Strukturalizem, maoizem, neoliberalizem
- Matteo COLOMBI. Civil society and art producers as parallel polis? Some reflections on the paradoxes of dissident culture from 1968 to 1989 and beyond (a Czechoslovak-Yugoslav comparison) / Civilna družba in umetniški proizvajalci kot vzporedni polis? Nekaj premislekov o paradoksih disidentske kulture od 1968 do 1989 in onkraj
Accompanying and social events
- Exhibition The Last Season of Modernism: May ’68 in Literature and Theory, Atrium ZRC SAZU.