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From Indyref to Indignados: how passions and politics mix

As Scotland heads to the polls, this piece discusses the extent to which emotions have arrived at the heart of contemporary politics – yet we still hesitate to admit it. Emotions can neither be banished nor ignored when we discuss what constitutes political communities, how political decisions should be made and political action springs into being. Yet to embrace the rise of emotional politics without acknowledging how intimately it is and should be entangled with reason equally risks undermining just political action.
Dr Uta Staiger
18 September 2014

Starts: Sep 18, 2014 12:00:00 AM

10 things you need to know about what will happen if Scotland votes yes

As the Scottish independence referendum draws closer the outcome is hard to predict. Both Westminster politicians and the wider public are asking what – in practical terms – would happen if the Scots were to vote Yes. Robert Hazell offers a 10-point overview of what the road to independence might look like.
Professor Robert Hazell
9 September 2014

Starts: Sep 9, 2014 12:00:00 AM

The truth is, Scandinavia is neither heaven nor hell

The Nordic countries have received exceptionally good press in the UK - at least until earlier this year, when British travel writer and resident of Denmark, Michael Booth, claimed to dispel the of Scandinavia as the perfect place to live. Many are now confused. Is everything we believed about the social ideals of Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland a lie? Well, not entirely but we’re not all drunk serial killers either.
Dr Jakob Stougaard-Nielsen
19 August 2014 More...

Starts: Sep 8, 2014 12:00:00 AM

UCL-French Embassy Conférence-Débat 1: Between Feminism and Post-Colonialism

Publication date: Dec 14, 2011 6:15:50 PM

Start: Mar 5, 2012 12:00:00 AM

5 March 2012, 6pm

Old Refectory
UCL Main Building
University College London
Gower Street
London WC1E 6BT

In cooperation with:

Institut Francais small

Attendance is free but registration is required.

Register for UCL-French Embassy Conférence-Débat 1 in London, United Kingdom  on Eventbrite

Troubling our ‘selves’: Between Feminism and Post Colonialism

Paris-based critic and author Elisabeth Lebovici will be in conversation with Tamar Garb, Professor in the History of Art at University College London. The conversation with be chaired by Professor Michael Worton, Vice-Provost (International) and Fielden Professor of French Language and Literature at UCL.

What is the relationship of feminism to the post colonial? How might we remap women’s historic relationship to Paris, putative ‘capital’ of the nineteenth century, by rethinking it from women’s  vantage point – both in the past and now? Can feminism and post colonialism provide a destabilising vantage point from which to dislodge ideas of ‘centre’ and periphery’, ‘major’ and ‘minor’? When Delacroix used the  female allegorization of ‘Liberty’ in his famous painting of the Barricades of 1830, what did the abstraction of her figure have to say to the denial of her rights as a citizen? Paris’s centrality to ‘modernité’ and ‘mondialité’ is a cliché. Women have articulated this for over 200 years. But what are the further challenges of the post-colonial to this critique, especially now as national identities are  reasserting themselves and Europe’s coherence is being challenged and questioned? How is Europe relativised from the vantage point of the global South? And what works are artists, thinkers and writers now producing that provide a critique of conventional hierarchies of race and place, subjects and objects in the aftermath of Imperialism and Colonialism?


It is the first in a new Conferénce-Débat Series dedicated to the Humanities, jointly proposed by the UCL European Institute and the Embassy of France.

These talks, in which distinguished figures from research-intensive universities and the arts in France and from UCL speak and debate (in English), are open to the wider public. The second Conferénce-Débat in the series will take place  on 9 May 2012, under the title The Future of Poetry.


Elisabeth Lebovici is an art historian and critic. She has been working from 1991 to 2006 as a cultural journalist for the daily newspaper Libération and is now a freelance writer with a blog: http://le-beau-vice.blogspot.com. She currently teaches a class on "Art, history, gender" at Sciences-Po Paris and since 2006, with Natasa Petresin Bachelez, Hans-Ulrich Obrist and Patricia Falguières, she organizes a seminar at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences sociales, entitled: "Something You should Know: artists and producers".  She was the editor of L’Intime (Paris, ensb-a, 1998) and with Catherine Gonnard, she wrote a history of women artists in France from 1880 to nowadays (Femmes/artistes, artistes/femmes, Paris de 1880 à nos jours, Paris, Hazan, 2007). She also co-curated "Beau comme un camion" during the Europride, Paris, 1997 and, with Caroline Bourgeois,  "L'argent" at Le Plateau, Paris, 2008. Amongst her latest publications are her contributions to the books or catalogues of artists such as: Roni Horn, Lynda Benglis, Joana Vasconcelos, Martin Szekely, Mark Morrisroe, Brigit Jurgenssen, General Idea, Tacita Dean, Rosa Barba, Pierre Keller, Alexandra Roussopoulos, Mai-Thu Perret.

Tamar Garb
is Durning Lawrence Professor in the History of Art at UCL. Her research interests have focused on questions of gender and sexuality, the woman artist and the body in nineteenth and early twentieth century French art and she has published extensively in this field. Key publications include Sisters of the Brush: Women’s Artistic Culture in Late Nineteenth Century Paris (Yale University Press, 1994); Bodies of Modernity: Figure and Flesh in Fin de Siecle France (Thames & Hudson, 1998) and The Painted Face, Portraits of Women in France 1814 -1914 (Yale University Press, 2007).  Her latest publication in this area is The Body in Time: Figures of Femininity in Late Nineteenth-Century France (University of Washington Press, 2008). She has also published on questions of race and representation and in 1995 she collaborated with Linda Nochlin on a volume of essays entitled The Jew in the Text; Modernity and the Construction of Identity (T&H). In 2010 she acted as External Exhibition consultant on Gauguin: Maker of Myth for the Tate and as Consultant Editor on the accompanying catalogue. Her interests have turned recently to post apartheid culture and art as well as the history of photographic practices in South Africa. In 2008 she curated an exhibition on Landscape and Language in South African Art entitled Land Marks/Home Lands; Contemporary Art from South Africa at Haunch of Venison Gallery in London. In April 2011, her exhibition Figures and Fictions: Contemporary South African Photography opened at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London. Feminist politics in the context of global and international developments in theory and practice remain pressing concerns as do questions of gender and sexuality in historic and contemporary areas.