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ACLA 2020: Awkwardness

Monday, September 23, 2019 - 2:41pm
University of Chicago
deadline for submissions: 
Monday, September 23, 2019

To feel something is “awkward” is to verge on—without exactly arriving at— a judgment: it notes that a situation is uncomfortable without diagnosing what is responsible for that social impasse. (Here one thinks of the childhood staple the “awkward turtle,” which surfaces when there is nothing else to do.) Awkwardness thus names an interval of epistemological suspension: it invokes a placeholder for a situation to which one is unsure how to react and registers an emergent sociality the contours of which are not readily intelligible.