We encourage conference participants to closely read both The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning & Black Study by Fred Moten and Stefano Harney (Minor Compositions 2013) and The Use of Bodies by Giorgio Agamben and translated by Adam Kotsko (Stanford University Press 2016).

We are offering pdfs to facilitate the study of these core texts, both separately and together. You’ll find the prologue and epilogue of The Use of Bodies above, and we are able to link to The Undercommons, because Minor Compositions has the entire book online for free.

These concepts, and the fields sprouting up around them, are helping us start to develop a language that is more than a reminder of our history, more than cautionary tales of what not to do.

Each work challenges us to see aspects of what we want in how we already live. And, it’s here that language hits a limit. Ellipitical concepts emerge in both, the undercommons and destituent power, and the paradoxes and elusiveness in the terms themselves point to the impasses of our time.