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Phil and Lit: "The Loose Garments of Argument" with Pardis Dabashi



Pardis Dabashi (University of Nevada, Reno)


Thursday, April 8, 2021 - 5:30pm - 7:00pm





Phil and Lit: "The Loose Garments of Argument" with Pardis Dabashi

The Philosophy and Literature Initiative warmly invites you to our first event of the Spring quarter.
We will host a conversation with Pardis Dabashi (University of Nevada, Reno) on her introduction to the PMLA’s Theories and Arguments (October 2020). Pardis’ article, “The Loose Garments of Argument,” addresses the relationship between the precarization of research and teaching in literary studies and modes of argumentation. Her introduction is a necessary reading for those seeking to understand how markets and institutions affect knowledge production in the literary disciplines.
Here is the article’s abstract:
Pardis Dabashi's essay “The Loose Garments of Argument” introduces the “Cultures of Argument” special feature she edited and organized for the October 2020 issue of PMLA. Dabashi examines literary-critical argumentation from material and epistemological standpoints. First, she acknowledges the material conditions under which literary critical claims are made in the contemporary university. She is especially concerned with how the labor crisis in the academic humanities offers us an opportunity to further defamiliarize and decenter the “they say/I say” model of argumentation, which structures claims at the expense of other claims. Second, she suggests that disagreement may not be the epistemologically appropriate mode of engagement when it comes to arguing about art, nor the rhetorics of certainty that tend to characterize those disagreements.
Pardis Dabashi is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Nevada, Reno. Her areas of research include nineteenth- and twentieth-century American and European literature, as well as film studies, novel studies, and literary theory. She is the co-editor of The New William Faulkner Studies forthcoming from Cambridge UP in 2021, and her work has appeared or is forthcoming in PMLA, Modernism/modernity, MFS: Modern Fiction Studies, Textual Practice, Arizona Quarterly, Early Popular Visual Culture, Public Books, and elsewhere. Her current book project, “Losing the Plot: Film and Feeling in the Modernist Novel,” examines identification, ambivalence, and plot in the modernist novel and popular film.
You can register here. Pardis’ article was sent by email. Request the article from