Lecture date: 1998-01-15
It is becoming increasingly apparent that transnational interstate economies are colonising individual nation-states, rendering them quasi-obsolete even as they preserve the integrity of their differences for marketing purposes . . . As millennial hype cuts across national boundaries, further weakening discrete, recognisable forms of national identity, trans-world aesthetics and cosmic projections of an alien nation become more and more visible. This upmarket, New Age flirtation with alien-ness provides the backdrop to projects that overtly engage with a space-age formal vocabulary: magmas and blobs, astral abstractions, Afrofuturism.
Emily Apter is the author of Continental Drift: From National Characters to Virtual Subjects which explores the problems of the stereotype, colonial realism, post-colonial cyberpunk, Orientalism and feminist theatricality.
A former Chair of the Department of Comparative Literature and Professor of Comparative Literature and French at UCLA, Apter is currently a Professor in the Department of French at NYU. She has taught at Cornell University, where she was Chair of Comparative Literature, University of California, Davis, the University of Pennsylvania, and Williams College. She is the editor of a book series, Translation/Transnation for Princeton University Press, and serves on the editorial boards of PMLA, Comparative Literature, October and Signs. NB: Occasional sound problems.