Paul Robeson: Artist as Revolutionary

Dr. Baruch Gottlieb
Paul Robeson: Artist as Revolutionary

Seminar, English/Deutsch, 2 SWS, 2 ECTS
Fridays, 14-18 h, ca. bi-weekly: on 20.10. (in room 151), on 10.11., 17.11., 1.12., 15.12.2023, 12.1., 26.1., 9.2.2024 in room 150, Hardenbergstr. 33

Registration on Moodle starts 16.10.2023 / Anmeldung auf Moodle beginnt am 16.10.2023:
Moodle Enrollment Key / Einschreibeschlüssel: robeson

This seminar will examine what goes into the preparation, execution and communication of an archive-based exhibition on the work of one of the most influential and famous performing artists of his time, Paul Robeson.  Course work will involve research into various aspects of Robeson’s practice, theater, music, film, as well as his activism and militancy.  We will look at the role of art in society, the political dimensions and limitations of art, and what Walter Benjamin described as aesthetics in the service of a movement. Additionally, we will look at the importance and influence of his wife Eslanda Robeson and work out strategies to appropriately integrate her in the exhibition project. Research sessions will also take place at the Paul and & Eslanda Robeson archive at the Akademie der Künste Berlin. This exhibition has been staged in The Hague for the past year and is planned to travel to London at the end of 2023 and to come to Berlin in 2024.
This seminar will consist of discussions, readings and viewings, field trips, workshops, group and individual activities and presentations.

References: Joy James, Charisse Burden Stelley, WEB DuBois, Gerald Horne, Walter Benjamin, bell hooks, Angela Davis, Ishmael Reed, Boris Groys, Saidiya Hartmann, Sylvia Wynter.

Requirements for the ungraded Studium Generale credit points: regular and active participation in the seminars, two small presentations, individually or in groups.

Baruch Gottlieb, trained as a filmmaker at Concordia University Montreal, has a doctorate in digital aesthetics from the University of Arts Berlin. Author of ‘A Political Economy of the Smallest Things’ (ATROPOS 2016), and ‘Digital Materialism’ (Emerald 2018) he has a broad individual and collective art practice and has worked as a curator and director of special projects at West Den Haag, a contemporary art space in The Hague, where he has produced several touring exhibition projects and public programs. With Ji Yoon Yang, he founded SFX Seoul sound art festival with ‘7 editions’ since 2007, and together with Steffi Winkler, he is founder and co-chair of Flusser Club e.V., an organization dedicated to the work of Czechoslovakian philosopher of technology and information Vilém Flusser. Gottlieb is currently part of the Prof3Dual program in the Kulturarbeit department of the FH Potsdam where he directs the Research Institute for Technical Aesthetics (RITA).