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Prof. Alia Al-Saji on Racializing Habits of Perception

April 1, 2013

5:30 PM

Hillel 101

Julie Cline

Alia Al-Saji, Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, will give a lecture at Washington and Lee University on Monday, April, at 5 p.m. in Northen Auditorium, Leyburn Library.

The title of her lecture is “A Phenomenology of Hesitation: Interrupting Racializing Habits of Perception.” It is free and open to the public.

In this lecture, Al-Saji seeks to understand the recalcitrant structure of racializing habits of seeing and to uncover the possibilities within perception for a critical awareness and destabilization of these habits. Drawing on Bergson, Merleau-Ponty, Fanon, and race-critical feminism, Professor Al-Saji finds in hesitation the moment when habits of seeing can be internally fractured. Hesitation, she claims, makes visible the exclusionary logic of objectifying perception, countering its rigidity and opening it to critical transformation. Hesitation thus opens the possibility for perception to become at once critically watchful and ethically responsive.