May 2018 : Junior Key-note Tender Rhythms. Rethinking the Erotic, Subjectivity and Sociality through Tenderness . At the 2018 Zizek Conference, “Beyond the Aether, Music, Film/Media, Art.” Athens, GA.

Abstract: Tender Rhythms : Rethinking the Erotic, Subjectivity and Sociality through Tenderness is a one hour presentation/experience build upon my eponymous PhD dissertation. It explores the early psychoanalytical concept of libidinal tenderness (Zärtlichkeit) and situates it in Freud’s first edition of the Three Essays on Sexuality (1905) and his little known essay On the Universal Tendency to Debasement in the Sphere of Love (1912). The presentation claims how Freud’s theory on adult sexuality is build upon a ‘taboo on adult erotic tenderness,’ or to put it differently, adult sexuality presupposes a repression of the tender libido. Through a theoretical account, interwoven with personal diary-style vignettes and the live performance of music, Tender Rhythms tries to fulfill four aims: firstly to critiques this taboo on adult tenderness; secondly to affectively depict and capture moments of adult erotic tenderness, thirdly to tenderize the presenter (me), and fourthly to carve-out a space in which a tenderness is allowed to flourish between presenter and audience. Tender Rhythms is simultaneously a vulnerable performance and a theoretically rigorous plea for tenderness, consciously experimenting to push the boundaries of traditional academic conference presentations.