Greenberg Distinguished Scholar Program

Haun Saussy

Haun Saussy taught at UCLA, Stanford, and Yale before joining the University of Chicago in 2011. His books include The Problem of a Chinese Aesthetic, Great Walls of Discourse and Other Adventures in Cultural China, Comparative Literature in an Age of Globalization, and, forthcoming, The Ethnography of Rhythm. He has also edited books on modernist poetry, Chinese women's writing, sinography, and global public health. He is currently a Guggenheim fellow.

Lecture: “Communications and Constitutions: Transparency, Irony, and the Avatars of the Enlightenment Subject”

head sculptures

Wednesday, January 28, 2015
7 p.m., Vollum lecture hall

In recent years, “Enlightenment universalism" and the “Enlightenment subject" have come under a great deal of criticism, whether from a Frankfurt School angle or a postcolonial one. But the problems of subjectivity and ethical responsibility as explored by Enlightenment people show them to have anticipated many aspects of that critique and attempted to deal with it through the characteristic 18th-century genres of letter-writing and constitution-making.

Lecture: “When Translation Isn’t Translation”


Thursday, January 29, 2015
5 p.m., Psychology 105

The usual understanding of translation as a substitution of different words in different languages for the same meanings does not apply to situations where a new word has to be created in the target language to convey the meaning, or a word is simply exported from the source language to the target language—two situations that account for much of the traffic between languages. By taking such situations as normal, we can reconceive the relationship between languages and make room for an understanding of translation as citation.