Bowie at Birkbeck
Birkbeck Gender & Sexuality (BiGS) in collaboration with the Birkbeck Institute of the Moving Image (BIMI)
Professor Alex Sharpe of Keele University will present a lecture titled: Scary Monsters: the Hopeful Undecidability of David Bowie (1947-2016). Monsters, because the monster is the outsider template par excellence. Hopeful, because monsters are quintessentially hopeful. Bowie, because he is the monster writ large. Of all the figures within popular culture, few embody the monster quite like David Bowie. Through Bowie, the lecture will think through, and render accessible, some key categorical distinctions which the monster brings to crisis. In particular, and through Bowie, we will journey through the territory of sex, gender and sexuality; human/animal hybridity, and the sacred and the profane.
The lecture will be followed by a screening of Nick Roeg’s 1976 cult sci-fi film, The Man Who Fell to Earth. There will then follow a discussion of Bowie and his massive cultural influence. The discussion will be led by Dr Piyel Haldar (Birkbeck) and Dr Ann Kaloski Naylor (University of York).
The event will conclude with a reception and music.
So roll up for the mother of monsters. The event will be theoretically rich and an audio-visual feast. What it will not be is dull.
BiGS It brings together scholars working in the arts and humanities and the social sciences and encourages dialogue with practitioners in the creative industries as well as with non-academic constituencies.
BIMI is a response to the growing interest in film and the moving image across the College. Through public events and academic research initiatives, BIMI will address a wide variety of contemporary issues, particularly those relevant to its interdisciplinary structure.