Visual, Spatial, and Material Politics

New School for Social Research: Politics

Liberal Arts

Graduate Course

Degree Students (with Restrictions)

Vis, Spatial, Material Pol

Spring 2022

Taught By: Victoria Hattam and Georgia Traganou

Section: A

CRN: 10863

Credits: 3

The class will be run as a critical studio and will be taught jointly by Professor Victoria Hattam from the Politics Department at NSSR and Professor Jilly Traganou from the School of Art and Design History and Theory of Parsons. The central aim of the course is to introduce students to new methods and conceptions of evidence to use in their research projects. Put simply, we want to explore politics beyond the hegemony of the word. We will begin with space and visuality, but over the course of the semester, will introduce questions of materiality, sound, and affect as well. Throughout the class, we will consider politics both at the level of states, institutions, as well as practices. The guiding premise of the seminar is that material and performative practices have the capacity to articulate political arguments. In our view, material practices, performances and artifacts of argumentation involve transformative political processes that are different in nature from the cognitive processes of deliberation necessary for the articulation of verbal political messages. They initiate “moments of sensuous enchantment” that provide “the motivational energy needed to move selves from the endorsement of ethical principles to the actual practice of ethical behaviors” (Jane Bennett).To ground our explorations, the class will focus on specific sites. Research areas might derive from students’ own thesis work, or from individual or collective interests of students in the class. Hattam and Traganou will also draw on their research to provide specific examples of multisensory politics. For Hattam this will include political economy and border politics, and for Traganou prefigurative politics and material engagement. The sites of students’ engagement might vary. Students will be encouraged to publish their work in the Parsons’s student-run Design Studies journal Plot(s) ( or other graduate student journals.

College: New School for Social Research (GF)

Department: Politics (GPOL)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Max Enrollment: 11

Add/Drop Deadline: February 6, 2022 (Sunday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 17, 2022 (Sunday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Open*

* Status information is updated every five minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 8:08pm 12/8/2021 EST

Meeting Info:

Days: Monday

Times: 4:00pm - 5:50pm

Building: Academic Entrance 63 Fifth Ave

Room: 411

Date Range: 1/24/2022 - 5/16/2022