Literature, public space(s) and democracy


Littérature, espace(s) public(s) et démocratie
Literature, Public Space(s) and Democracy

Date: Friday 01 Nov 2013 – 09:15 to Saturday 02 Nov 2013 – 18:00
Place: Maison Française d’Oxford
Topic: French Literature from the Modern to the Post-Modern
1er novembre/1st November
Inquiry: [email protected]

Organisers :

Philippe Roussin, CNRS/MFO;
Mike Holland, St Hugh’s College, Oxford;
Philippe Daros, Université de la Sorbonne Nouvelle;
Annick Louis, Université de Reims-CRAL, EHESS ;
Sebastian Veg, EHESS (Paris) – CEFC (Hong-Kong);
LabEx Création arts et patrimoine (Pres-Hesam)

St Hugh’s College, Oxford
Université de la Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris
CEFC (Hong Kong)



About the conference:
The important roles played by literature and by autonomous frameworks of discussion in the formation of a democratic public space, in Europe at the time of the Enlightenment, are well known. How can we, in a now globalized world, rethink the question of possible links between literature and democracy – whether we define the latter as a form of society (the exchange of words and discourses), a problem, or a moment in time? How can we define the place of literature in the public space as it is now configured? What are the contemporary forms of literature’s contribution to a democratic public space? What are the modes of participation in the public space and in what sense can literature represent a specific form of intervention in it? Which role do the history and reception of a work of literature play in its interaction with the public space? In other words, what does literature do in the world, in the democratic debate, today, whether one judges that this democratic debate is already taking place in a constituted public sphere, or that it is still to come in a public space to be established in another time or place.

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