Skip to main content

On Habitability - Propositions Beyond Capture

Event information>


Institute in Paris

As part of the Banister Fletcher Global Fellowship, join the Institute in Paris and delve into Professor AbdouMaliq Simone's project, 'Urban Life at the Extensions'. Over 5 days of dialogue in Paris, this programme brings together scholars, activists and urbanists to draw from their respective domains and locations.   

About the event

Key to a propositional politics around urban habitability is that the idea that life might be an open, non-linear and exponentially chaotic system is increasingly behind us. We seem to have reached a point where the market is re-imagined as the primary mechanism for the validation of truth. Since markets themselves are increasingly turning into algorithmic structures, the only useful knowledge today is supposed to be algorithmic. At the same time, Bernard Stiegler argues that only a diversity of local knowledge, engaged in a genuine contention of standpoints, possesses the wealth and the strength to produce genuine leaps. Here, differences generated, are different, in that there is no ready language to account for and incorporate them, and so they are marked initially by intensities and thresholds rather than conceptual categories. They act as sources of illumination that enable a visualisation of the space in which distinct enactments are seen and felt as having a relationship with each other. As these differences within the differences are themselves situated ambiguously between the captive architectures of both subjugation and “freedom”, what political technical interventions hold out possibilities for new ways of looking, reading, and deciding. By steering improbable connections toward new instances of gathering and collaboration, a concrete imagination is made available to those otherwise increasingly uncertain as to how to act in an increasing precarious world.

How might we coax such connections along? How do we take on the challenge of enabling a more viable life for urban residents, when the very terms of viability may differ, may entail different manoeuvres and emphases. How might such an exigent multiplicity “sing” in concert?


The event will be moderated by AbdouMaliq Simone

About the Series

In the context of the University of London Institute in Paris's Banister Fletcher Global Fellowship, this event is part of Professor AbdouMaliq Simone's research project entitled 'Urban Life at the Extensions', a 5-day series of dialogue in Paris. Centred around five working themes, this programme brings together scholars, activists and urbanists to draw from their respective domains and locations.