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2018 Annual Humanities Horizons Lecture

Dignity in Distress: Thoughts on Migration and Mortality

The Trinity Long Room Hub Annual Humanities Horizons Lecture for 2018 will be delivered by Professor Homi K. Bhabha (Anne F. Rothenberg Professor of the Humanities, Director of the Mahindra Humanities Center, and Senior Advisor to the President and Provost at Harvard University.) 


Professor Bhabha will address the global migration crisis and its causes from the humanities perspective.  He will speak of how discrimination and dishonour, the two faces of “barbaric nationalism”, have been mobilized to denigrate minority populations whether they are in flight or “at home”, and of how divisive ethno nationalism has been fuelled by leaders with utter contempt for democratic party-politics, who project themselves as pioneers of a mercurial “movement” politics.  Drawing on real-life events and literary references, Professor Bhabha will examine how, for today’s migrants and refugees, the very act of hope and survival, the decision to flee, can become a close encounter with mortality.

About Homi K. Bhabha
Homi K. Bhabha is the author of numerous works exploring postcolonial theory, cultural change and power, contemporary art, and cosmopolitanism, including Nation and Narration, and The Location of Culture, which was reprinted as a Routledge Classic in 2004. His next book will be published by the University of Chicago Press.

He is a member of the Academic Committee for the Shanghai Power Station of Art, and the Mobilising the Humanities Initiating Advisory Board (British Council), an advisor on the Contemporary and Modern Art Perspectives (C-MAP) project at the Museum of Modern Art New York, a Trustee of the UNESCO World Report on Cultural Diversity, and the Curator in Residence of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. In 1997 he was profiled by Newsweek as one of “100 Americans for the Next Century.”  He holds honorary degrees from Université Paris 8, University College London, and the Free University Berlin. In 2012 he was conferred the Government of India’s Padma Bhushan Presidential Award in the field of literature and education, and he received the Humboldt Research Prize in 2015.

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