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International scholar to deliver MATX lecture on the "Political Aesthetics of ISIS and Italian Futurism"

Apr 12, 2019

Posted in: News

By Mariam Alkazemi, Ph.D., Assistant Professor

Dr. Thorsten Botz-Bornstein will deliver an MATX program lecture on Tuesday, April 12.

Dr. Thorsten Botz-Bornstein will speak about the aesthetics of the Islamic State (ISIS) from the angle of Italian Futurism. He will speak on Tuesday, April 16, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in room 2211 of the Temple Building on VCU’s Monroe Park campus.

Botz-Bornstein is an associate professor of philosophy at the Gulf University for Science and Technology in Kuwait. He has published 13 authored books, 6 edited books, and over 100 articles. Botz- Bornstein earned his doctorate in philosophy from Oxford University, and has also studied in Finland, Paris, Germany, Japan, China and at Tuskegee University in Alabama.

In his talk, Botz-Bornstein will approach, which can be described as “neo-organic” as he is drawing on hermeneutics, structuralist stylistics, and many other philosophies that can be seen as organic. He uses a special “play-style-dream” triangle as a theoretical foundation in his works on aesthetics (organic architecture, organic film, etc.), intercultural communication, virtual reality, and politics.

Italian Futurism praised violence as a means of leaving behind imitations of the past in order to project itself most efficiently into the future. It glorified cars and modern cities and emphasized speed, technology, and youth.  ISIS overcomes the postmodern, pessimistic futurism of “cyberpunk” and links itself to the optimistic attitude that was common in Italian Futurism in the early twentieth century. ISIS returns to modernism.

The presentation is free and open to the public, and is part of a lecture series in the Media, Art and Text (MATX) interdisciplinary doctoral program, which is a joint program by the Richard T. Robertson School of Media and Culture, the Department of English and the School of the Arts.

Please direct any questions to Dr. Mariam Alkazemi.