Talk · On Fernand Deligny's Work by Catherine Perret
Fernand Deligny became famous in France between the 1930s and 1960s for adhering to an educational system known as anarchistic education (free school) . Until the 1990s, he exiled himself with a few friends and autistic children in the South of France where he developed extensive recording and memorization practices by using texts, cinematography, and cartography with the aim of creating a possible cohabitation between speaking and non-speaking individuals.
Inspired by the works of both Marcel Mauss and André-Leroi Gourhan, this anthropological experimentation resulted in the formulation of a new concept that he coined the “common body”, which is regarded today by Keith Basso or Tim Ingold as possessing a singular political potential.
This talk analyzes Deligny’s concept by looking at the ways in which it confronts the sociological concept of the social body and how its invention proceeds directly from the Deligny’s “artistic” inventions.
Catherine Perret is associate professor of modern and contemporary aesthetics and theory at Nanterre University (Paris X). She obtained her PhD in philosophy and is known for her work on Walter Benjamin, most notably by her book Walter Benjamin ou la critique en effet. Perret was the director of the Art of Exhibition Department at Paris X. She served as a program director at the Collège International de Philosophie from 1995 to 2001. She is currently responsible for the Centre de recherche sur l’art, philosophie, esthétique (cRéART – PHI) at Paris X.
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