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On critique

Kaminer, Tahl ORCID: 2018. On critique. Presented at: Ibstock Lecture, University of the West of England, Bristol, UK, 27 September 2018.

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The term ‘critique’ and its derivatives ‘criticality’ and ‘critical’ are commonplace in academic writing in humanities and social sciences as well as in art and design discourses. They are applied in diverse forms and are perceived in a positive sense as signs of reflective and reflexive thinking. A rarely addressed lacuna at the heart of the deployment of critique is the question of critique itself – what, in effect, is critique and what is the function of critique? The talk will provide tentative answers to these questions by outlining a concise history of the emergence of critique as a specific practice during Enlightenment, by providing an analysis of the function of critique in contemporary society, and by examining critique in architecture. It will discuss the co-optation of critique, that is, the process by which critique’s efficacy is undermined not through direct confrontation and rejection, but by ostensibly accepting it. Critique, the talk will argue, is neither ‘exhausted’, as some scholars have claimed (e.g. Latour), nor radical, as others seem to imply (e.g. the ‘post-critical’ debate), but, instead, ordinary.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Date Type: Completion
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Architecture
Last Modified: 26 Oct 2022 08:19

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