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Ways To Be and Not to Be: Reading LaoZhuangZi PhiloPoetically

April 18, 2023 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Ways To Be and Not to Be: Reading LaoZhuangZi PhiloPoetically 

April 18, 2023, 12:00 – 13:30 pm (HK time)
Language: English
Venue: May Hall 201 AND via ZOOM (Registration is required.)
Registration Link: http://bit.ly/KyooTalk
Ready? Set, here we go again.  
“Pathways” (Dao道) in classical Daoist discourses, not really “ready-made,” tend to make themselves anew quite readily, all the way through; “way-making (dao) that can be put into words,” “eloquently couched” as such (信言不美 美言不信Daodejing 道德經CH 8), “is not really way-making” (道可道非常道), says the old sage (老子), who also says that “those who know will not say it, and those who say would not know it” (知者不言 言者不知). What is he saying? Dao is effable and ineffable. So what? What are we supposed to do?
Today, which GPS will take us to this Daoist “door of all wonders” (衆妙)? What kind of thresholding, not just gatekeeping, would be possible? Taking the auto-poetic generativity of such good old Daoist paradoxes and ironies as a philosophically renewable energy, this seminar, the first in the series, on the Daoist PhiloPoetics of transitive ambiguation introduces ways to reboot Laozi (老子) and Zhuangzi (庄子) translingually, focusing on their metamorphic—metaphorical and metaphysical—avant-gardism, their waiting (weiding未定 Zhuangzi 04) game.


Kyoo Lee aka Q is a philosopher, writer, art critic and a Professor of Philosophy and Gender Studies at the City University of New York, who works widely in the interwoven fields of the Arts and Humanities. The author of Reading Descartes Otherwise (FUP) and a forthcoming book on visual philopoetics (MIT Press), she is a recipient of faculty fellowships from Cambridge University, KIAS and the Mellon Foundation among others, and her genre-bending writings that explore co-generative links between critical theory and creative prose have appeared in Flash Art, Jacket 2, Randian, The White Review, etc., as well as numerous academic venues. Actively engaged in various editorial (currently, philoSOPHIA, SUNY Press), curatorial and public intellectual projects, recently she served as the editor for the Korean Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2022, a judge for the Poetry Translation Prizes at the Poetry Translation Center (London) and PEN America (NYC), and the faculty leader for the Mellon Seminar at the CUNY Graduate Center, “mp3: merging poetry, philosophy, performativity.”

ASIAR Research Cluster, HKIHSS, HKU


April 18, 2023
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Event Category:


ASIAR research cluster, HKIHSS, HKU


May Hall 201 AND via Zoom (Registration is required.)
View Venue Website