Paul B. Preciado
“An Apartment on Uranus: Chronicles of the Crossing”
Interlocutor: Ivan Lopez Munuera
Wednesday, October 28, 2020 @5pm EST
Online Event [register here or stream here]
One night, months after I have started a process of gender transitioning, I dreamt that I had an apartment on Uranus. That dream was not like other dreams. It was like a virus, it induced the feeling that that extraterrestrial apartment existed. Why Uranus? Why having an apartment on the coldest planet in the solar system, a frozen giant named for a Greek deity? Only much later, I remember that in 1864, the writer and first sexual activist Karl Heinrich Ulrichs coined the term “uranism” to define the “third sex” and the rights of those who “love differently.” My trans condition is a form of Uranism. I am not a man and I am not a woman and I am not heterosexual I am not homosexual I am not bisexual. I am a dissident of the sex-gender system. I am a Uranian confined inside the limits of techno-scientific capitalism. But, what does it mean to gender transition within a gender binary and patriarchal-colonial regime? How technologies of production of gender and sexual subjectivity have changed since Ulrichs times? What has been the role of architecture within the construction and normalization of gender, sexual, and racial segmentation and how is this role changing within contemporary pharmacopornographic capitalism?
Paul B. Preciado is a philosopher, curator, and one of the leading thinkers in the study of gender, sexual and body politics. Fulbright fellow, he holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy and Theory of Architecture from Princeton University. He is the author of the books Contra-Sexual Manifesto (Columbia University Press), Testo Junkie. Sex, Drugs and Biopolitics (The Feminist Press), Pornotopia (Zone Books) for which he was awarded the Sade Price in France, and An Apartment in Uranus (Fitzcarraldo/Semiotexte). He has taught Philosophy of the Body and Transfeminist Theory at Université Paris VIII-Saint Denis and at New York University. From 2014 to 2017, he was Curator of Public Programs of documenta 14 (Kassel/Athens) where he started the project The Parliament of Bodies. He is Associated Philosopher at the Pompidou Center. His newest book is Can the monster speak? Report for an Academy of Psychoanalyst (Grasset) and will be published in English in 2021 by Fitzcarraldo.
Ivan Lopez Munera is a Ph.D. candidate in the History and Theory of Architecture at Princeton University.