Announcing the 2017-2018 Critical Theory Working Group: Collaborations, Co-operatives, Coalition-Building

The 2017-2018 Critical Theory Working Group will be led by Designated Emphasis student and Theater, Dance & Performance Studies PhD candidate Megan Hoetger.

Drawing from several disciplines and connecting campus scholarship to extramural engagement, Collaborations, Co-operatives, Coalition-Building will ask “how can we imagine differently” in response to recent global developments.

The Program thanks Megan for her leadership in this effort, and values the time and hard work of its participants.

Below is the Working Group’s motivating rationale and initial schedule of meetings.

Composer, historian, and civil rights activist Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon once asserted, “if you’re in a coalition and you’re comfortable, you know it’s not a broad enough coalition.” Echoing Reagon’s sentiment, Judith Butler asserted in a recent public discussion at the BAMPFA that we do not have to have breakfast together, but we must try to find common interests across our divisionary lines. Taking Reagon’s and Butler’s words as a starting point, “Collaborations, Co-Operatives, and Coalition-Building,” seeks to offer a sustained engagement with the question: where do we go from here? If we are indeed living in a time of crises—crises of democracy, of communication, of critical media literacy—how can we imagine differently?

From this starting point the working group will develop over seven meetings, or “units,” which take up different, though certainly overlapping, keywords and frameworks that condition, contour, and constrain, our possibilities for imagining. Each working group has two invited co-facilitators (from both on and off the campus) who will assign readings, give informal introductions to the topics of the meetings, and, most importantly, bring different voices, perspectives, and stakes into the room. Alongside the working group organizer, Megan Hoetger, the co-facilitators will create a triangulated field of interests and investments for the working to engage with, rather than promoting a single voice that leads the conversation.


All working group meetings will be held on Wednesdays 5:30 – 7:30 PM in the BCNM Commons (340 Moffitt Library).

Collaboration Thinking
September 13, 2017

Questions of State
October 18, 2017

Global Networks
November 15, 2017

Life/Style after ’68
January 24, 2017

Public Spheres
February 21, 2018

Co-operative Models
March 21, 2018

Coalition Histories
April 18, 2018

Co-sponsored by the Arts Research Center, the Department of Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies, the Berkeley Center for New Media, and the Maxine Elliot Chair of Comparative Literature.