A Studious Use: Designing from the undercommons

  • Wed 31 May 23

    12:00 - 14:00

  • Online

    join this seminar

  • Event speaker

    Giovanni Marmont, University of Edinburgh

  • Event type

    Lectures, talks and seminars
    Centre for Commons Organising, Values Equalities and Resilience (COVER)

  • Event organiser

    Centre for Commons Organising Values Equalities and Resilience

  • Contact details

    COVER Research Centre

The Centre for Commons Organising, Values Equalities and Resilience (COVER) welcome you to join this online seminar with guest speaker Giovanni Marmont from the University of Edinburgh.

Seminar summary

A Studious Use begins with what is already there before any claims of beginnings and ends: that is to say, it begins with the understanding that individuation, whether enthusiastically asserted or violently imposed, is an assault on the general sharedness of social life. But if the self-possession and experiential boundedness that fuel individuation more often than not are mediated by, expressed through, and imposed via the handling of “stuff”, if they often hinge on acts of use, then the notion of use itself deserves close scrutiny. Moreover, such scrutiny could and perhaps should inspire an explicit foregrounding of material practices of use as a site for the experimentation with a sociality beyond, before, and against the metaphysics of individuation. In other words, drawing on the work of Stefano Harney and Fred Moten, the practice of use might be reconfigured as a collective, undercommon practice of study. More so than prioritising use over study or study over use, the intention of this book is that of identifying and celebrating previously unexplored points of convergence emerging between these two practices, when both are delinked from the paradigm of individuation by which they are routinely captured – whether through a framework of agency and intentionality or through a logic of accreditation and self-improvement, respectively. It is precisely the interplay between, and entwining of, use and study that this book sets out to explore: the point where to use is to study and to study is to use. The point where and when we are engaged in a studious use.


How to attend this seminar

We welcome you to join us online on Wednesday 31 May 2023 at 12pm.

This seminar is free to attend with no need to register in advance.


Speaker bio

Giovanni Marmont

Giovanni Marmont is an independent researcher based in Edinburgh and tutor on the MA Design for Change programme in the School of Design at the University of Edinburgh, whose work explores the socio-cultural and political significance of practices of use, considering how these can underpin new modes of collectivity.