REPETITION/S: Performance and Philosophy in Ljubljana

September 21, 2016 - September 24, 2016
Philosophy, University of Ljubljana

Kongresni trg 12
Ljubljana 1000

View the Call For Papers


  • City Museum of Ljubljana
  • Performance Philosophy Research Network

Selected speakers:

Andrew Benjamin
Monash University
Keti Chukhrov
Russian State University for the Humanities
Justin Clemens
University of Melbourne
Mladen Dolar
University of Ljubljana
University of Ljubljana
Bojana Kunst
Giessen University
Freddie Rokem
Tel Aviv University
Oxana Timofeeva
European University of Sanct-Petersburg
Samo Tomšič
Humboldt University, Berlin
Alenka Zupančič Žerdin
Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts


Ben Hjorth
Monash University
Bara Kolenc
University of Ljubljana
Gregor Moder
University of Ljubljana
Anna Street
University of Paris IV Sorbonne

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REPETITION/S: Performance and Philosophy in Ljubljana

Ljubljana, Slovenia

21-24 September, 2016

Confirmed participants:

Andrew Benjamin (Monash University, Melbourne)

Justin Clemens (University of Melbourne)

Keti Chukhrov (Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow)

Mladen Dolar (University of Ljubljana)

Bojana Kunst (Justus Liebig University Giessen)

Freddie Rokem (Tel Aviv University)

Oxana Timofeeva (European University at St Petersburg)

Samo Tomšič (Humboldt University Berlin)

Alenka Zupančič (Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Ljubljana)

Call for Papers & Performances:

Repetition, as a pivotal concept in contemporary theory and aesthetic practice, announces a movement away from logics of representation. Where the concept of representation had once predominated in attempts to think and enact the world, Alenka Zupančič notes that with the arrival of Deleuze, the shift from previous modes of thought “takes the form of a straightforward conceptual war: repetition against representation” (2008: 149-150). This conceptual warfare has perhaps nowhere laid out its stakes more clearly than on the contemporary scene of artistic practices. Within the domains of the visual, sonic and performing arts and their theorisations, the tensions between repetition and representation map out a common ground of encounter. Contemporary investigations into this contested territory are increasingly challenging the very modalities and terms in which both art and philosophy are practiced, or performed.

Invoking the concepts of both time and space as constitutive aspects, the problem of repetition raises topical questions of, on the one hand, processes of perception, (re)cognition, thought, memory, habit, and speech; and on the other, the dynamics of economic structures and historical processes. The notion of repetition also opens onto many other key questions being posed in and by contemporary philosophical and aesthetic practices: questions of the relations between body and thought, between the structure and the exception, between content and form. There is, moreover, no single or unified notion of repetition: rather, a number of divergent philosophical ontologies emerge, each taking the concept as its point of departure, and developing in dialogue with (amongst others) Hegelian and Marxist dialectics, Nietzsche's idea of the eternal return, the Kierkegaardian concept of repetition, psychoanalytic theorisations with Freud’s Wiederholungszwang and Lacan’s automatisme de répétition and instance de la lettre, linguistic and socio-political performativity, Derridean iterability and différance, and Deleuzian repetition as the production of difference.

Today, contemporary developments in the increasingly intertwined fields of philosophy and performance call for a renewed inquiry into the question of repetition. With its unique critique of ideology arising from a synthesis of German Idealism and Lacanian psychoanalysis, the Ljubljana School (Dolar, Zupančič, Žižek et al.) continues to furnish important theorisations of repetition and performance as they pertain to subjectivity and the political. One of the primary aims of REPETITION/S will be to investigate and develop the usefulness of the Ljubljana School’s theorisations for the emerging field of Performance Philosophy. The city is a major centre of art practice, with a specific strength in performing arts, and 2016 is Ljubljana’s first year as an UNESCO City of Literature. Scheduled to coincide with the City Museum of Ljubljana’s art & performance festival, the academic and artistic events constituting REPETITION/S will be co-hosted by the Kino Šiška Centre for Urban Culture and the University of Ljubljana.

In the experimental spirit of Performance Philosophy, we seek to host a polydisciplinary event bringing together a variety of scholars and artists. We encourage creative, engaged approaches to the event's terms of investigation.

Organising Committee:

Bara Kolenc (Ljubljana, Slovenia)

Gregor Moder (Ljubljana, Slovenia)

Anna Street (Sorbonne, France)

Ben Hjorth (Monash, Australia)

Advisory Board Members:

Elisabeth Angel-Perez (Paris-Sorbonne University)

Andrew Benjamin (Monash University)

Laura Cull (University of Surrey)

Will Daddario (Illinois State University)

Mladen Dolar (University of Ljubljana)

Simon Kardum (Kino Šiška Center for Urban Culture)

Peter Klepec (Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts)

Mirt Komel (Aufhebung International Hegelian Association)

Lev Kreft (University of Ljubljana)

Nikolaus Müller-Schöll (Goethe University of Frankfurt)

Freddie Rokem (Tel Aviv University)

Polona Tratnik (Slovenian Society for Aesthetics)

Alenka Zupančič (Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts)

The conference is sponsored by the Faculty of Arts of the University of Ljubljana, the City Museum of Ljubljana, the Kino Šiška Centre for Urban Culture, the Aufhebung Association, the Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Monash University, and the research laboratories VALE and PRITEPS at the University of Paris-Sorbonne, in partnership with the international research network Performance Philosophy. 

For more information, please visit the website at

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September 21, 2016, 1:00pm CET

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