Leeskring Complaint!

Shared reading and discussion of Sara Ahmed's latest book Complaint!

Friday 4 February 2022
15:00-17:00 Lipsius 119
This will be a hybrid event. Sign up at casualleiden@gmail.com to receive the Zoom link.

On 4 February, Casual Leiden organizes a shared reading and discussion of Sara Ahmed's latest book Complaint! with Larissa Schulte Nordholt.

The e-book is available at Leiden University library:

The event is open to staff and students of Leiden University and other institutions of higher education.

Language/taal: English of Nederlands
* Please indicate whether you would like to converse in Dutch, English or if you are comfortable in both languages.
* Geef alsjeblieft aan of je graag in het Nederlands meedoet, in het Engels of dat je beide talen voldoende beheerst.

In Complaint! Sara Ahmed examines what we can learn about power from those who complain about abuses of power. Drawing on oral and written testimonies from academics and students who have made complaints about harassment, bullying, and unequal working conditions at universities, Ahmed explores the gap between what is supposed to happen when complaints are made and what actually happens. To make complaints within institutions is to learn how they work and for whom they work: complaint as feminist pedagogy. Ahmed explores how complaints are made behind closed doors and how doors are often closed on those who complain. To open these doors---to get complaints through, keep them going, or keep them alive---Ahmed emphasizes, requires forming new kinds of collectives. This book offers a systematic analysis of the methods used to stop complaints and a powerful and poetic meditation on what complaints can be used to do. Following a long lineage of Black feminist and feminist of color critiques of the university, Ahmed delivers a timely consideration of how institutional change becomes possible and why it is necessary.

During the leeskring we will discuss our reading of the book, help each other to tease out difficult sections, and share lessons learned for a safer working and study environment in academia.

An online version of the book is available in our library: https://catalogue.leidenuniv.nl/permalink/f/q6ue0j/UBL_ALMA51393341270002711

This event is part of the University from Below.

Larissa Schulte Nordholt is an historian and PhD fellow at Leiden University, specialized in intellectual history and decoloniality.