Birkbeck Research in Aesthetics
of Kinship and Community
What is a 'community'?
What is a 'couple'?
What is a 'nation'?
What is a 'tribe'?
And how do we picture them?
Birkbeck Research in Aesthetics of Kinship and Community (BRAKC) exists in order to bring together academics from a range of disciplines (literature, philosophy, film and visual culture, fine art, sociology, linguistics, history, psychology) to discuss these questions and to engage in crucial debates around what constitutes 'belonging' in the so-called post-modern era. How have bonds between humans - real, ideal and sometimes imaginary - been lived, represented and conceptualised over the centuries? How have those bonds mutated across time and space? How might humans today and in the future be bound together "differently"? What prevents the realisation of bonds as yet unnamed? How might the various strands of the Arts and Humanities contribute to a new understanding of forms of relation and living together?
At BRAKC we run regular symposia, seminars, film screenings, a termly reading group, all devoted to exploring visions - old and new - of kinship and community. Our aim is to bring together theory and practice, art and empiricism, ethics and aesthetics, in order to pursue an ongoing academic project whose only rule is its collective refusal to conclude that "there is no such thing as society".