• Sun 10 06 2018 •
Archiving the Imaginary, the Erased, the Absent, and the Fugitive Avery F. Gordon


Venue: Stadtgarten, Venloer Straße 40, 50670 Cologne
In English
5 €
Moderated by: Natasha A. Kelly

In cooperation with Stadtgarten

The wondrous archive, whose keeper, AVERY F. GORDON, describes in her latest book The Hawthorn Archive: Letters from the Utopian Margins (2017), is not a library or collection in the usual sense, but rather an imaginary haven for all who fight against slavery, racism, exploitation, and authoritarian rule. The archive brings together the photographs, images, essays, exchanges, and collaborations of numerous artists, with which Gordon explores the utopian elements of resistant or revolutionary activity. Gordon’s book ties in with the philosophy of Ernst Bloch, who once declared: “All given existence and being itself has utopian margins which surround actuality with real and objective possibility.” The lecture takes up the notion of these “utopian margins” and examines their possible manifestations within an archive of many voices, which connects fact, fiction, and imagination. Gordon, a professor of sociology at the University of California at Santa Barbara, focuses on themes of Marxist theory and traditions of radical black resistance. Taking objects in the Hawthorn Archive as examples, she locates movements like the act of running away, vagrancy, rebellion, desertion, and other, often illegible forms of escape, each in their specific historical context. Avery F. Gordon’s lecture also serves as the introductory talk of the Academy’s new program axis found:erased:palimpsest.