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2nd Robert Gerhard Annual Lecture on Catalan Culture

08 May 2024 | 18:00 - 19:30 |
Fitzwilliam College

Collapse and Promise

Marina Garcés

In a historical time dominated by no-future scenarios, what force can a promise have? When uncertainty is the only certainty and time is dominated by the imminence of catastrophe, what sense can there be in creating a bond and a commitment that is sustained over time through the word given? This question takes us back to the common time of the West and its foundation: the word of God is the promise of salvation, the pact with the state is based on the promise of security, and the legitimation of capitalism is sold as an unlimited promise of prosperity. Can we read the current crisis of civilisation as a crisis, too, of this triple dimension of the promise of the West? And what are the consequences for the political imagination and for the relationship of our present to the future?

Marina Garcés (Barcelona, 1973) is philosopher, activist and professor at Universitat Oberta de Catalunya, where she is the director of the Master of Philosophy for contemporary challenges and the IP of the research group Mussol. Her main contribution to the generation of philosophical knowledge focuses on the elaboration of the problems of contemporary philosophy in the light of the idea of "common world". She began with a doctoral thesis on the concept of "possible" and its classical and modern philosophical paradigms, with a view to proposing a revision of the concept of contingency and its relation to necessity. From there, she has studied different dimensions of contemporary subjectivity from bond experiences, such as commitment, collective action or learning. She has written many books and articles, most of them translated into many different languages. Among others, some of her titles are: Un mundo común (2012), Escola d'aprenents (2020), El temps de la promesa (2023) or Filosofía inacabada (2015) and Nova il·lustració radical (2018, City of Barcelona Essay Award). This two last are being published by Verso books, 2024.

Organised by:

Institut Ramon Llull

Fitzwilliam College

Supported by:

MMLL, University of Cambridge