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Not Your Father's Boredom: Ennui in the age of 'Generation Meh'

This talk will be given by Professor Michael E. Gardiner, from the University of Western Ontario.

Through a reading of the 2011 novel Leaving the Atocha Station by US writer Ben Lerner, this talk will explore some of the underlying reasons why 21st-century boredom specifically is different than previous manifestations, with reference to new technologies, changing sociocultural conditions, increasing precarity in the workplace and elsewhere, the proliferating and accelerating demands on our time and attention, and so forth.

Drinks and nibbles will be served after the presentation.

This event was held at the University of Sydney on Monday 5 March 2018.


Professor Michael E. Gardiner is currently interested in theories of affect (especially boredom), the everyday, utopia, and dialogical social theory (the work of Mikhail Bakhtin in particular). He has published extensively on ideas around boredom and is currently editing a book on 'boredom studies'. 

The Sydney Social Sciences and Humanities Advanced Research Centre's  mission is to advance landmark research in the humanities and social sciences. Based in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, the centre works with University of Sydney researchers to turn great ideas into landmark outcomes for both theory and practice. SSSHARC develops and supports a diverse range of advanced research, with an emphasis on innovative and collaborative approaches to solving problems through humanities and social sciences research, and beyond.

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