Precarity: Passion, Rage, Reason, the SWIP UK Annual Conference in Association with CAPPE

Venue: Brighton University, 16th-17th June 2016

In the current context of austerity, growing levels of inequality, insecurity and injustice mean that many around the globe are forced to eke out an existence under increasingly precarious conditions. Few remain sanguine in the face of this, and whilst some argue that precarity is necessary given current conditions many others express anger, frustration, resentment and a passionate determination to find alternatives. In the academy, the term “precarity” has gained currency across disciplines to both describe conditions and theorise responses. However, this conference problematises precarity as both an analytic tool and topic of academic investigation. Firstly, since precarity is structured unevenly via our social identities and positions it asks whether (and why not) those experiencing precarity can express this within the academy? To what extent can they be heard and responded to before the embedded hierarchies, structures of power and language dilute, deflect and silence their angry and passionate articulations, by twisting them via requirements for “reasoned arguments” as defined by others?

Furthermore we note that precarity has a more positive resonance when it describes the destabilisation of norms and binary frameworks; such as those that structure gender, sexuality, nationality and race. Here, precarity is seen as something to celebrate; a field within which to challenge authority and constraint. Additionally, as destabilisation – in terms of working and living conditions, and identity – precarity is celebrated as “flexibility” through the neoliberal paradigm, with fragmentation and uncertainty seen as conditions for creativity, choice, motivation and competition. As a consequence, we ask whether precarity’s radical potential needs to be revised.

The conference themes include but are not limited to:

We anticipate that these and related issues will be of interest to people working in, among other areas, philosophy, gender studies, political theory, critical geography, international relations, psychology and sociology.

This event is intended to be as inclusive as possible. If you cannot afford the registration fee but would like to attend the conference there are a limited number of free places available. SWIP UK members/Friends of SWIP UK will be given priority. Please contact the CAPPE team.

The venue is wheelchair accessible and we will strive to be as accessible as we can be in other ways. Please contact the CAPPE team about your needs.

The conference fee includes a buffet dinner on the Thursday evening. Delegates will need to provide their own lunch and refreshments during the conference.

CAPPE is the Centre for Applied Philosophy, Politics and Ethics at the University of Brighton. For further information visit the CAPPE website

For further conference information and updates visit the conference website

To become a Member or Friend of SWIP UK, visit our Membership page.

This event will adhere to the BPA/SWIP UK Good Practice Scheme guidelines

Site Content © SWIP UK. All rights reserved.