What makes a house a home—at the scale of the gestational? the household? the planetary? Like so many tenets of classical liberalism, “a man’s house is his castle” has supposedly only been affirmed by the fortress-like experience (for some) of the Covid-19 pandemic. But under what conditions can a human under capitalism—particularly a man, in the gendered sense of the word—truly be said to know home? In this session, Sophie Lewis will explore questions of family abolition, wages against housework, kinmaking, refuge, and comradeliness, with particular attention to the architectural. The seventeenth-century legal proposition typically carries an addendum: “et domus sua cuique est tutissimum refugium” [and his own house is his safest refuge]. Would abolishing private property simply turn that premise inside out? Together, we will engage a selection of watery, amniotechnical sf texts, and think collectively with the utopian figure of Alice (in Wonderland), bursting corporeally through the seams of the White Rabbit’s house.
Sophie Lewis, PhD, is a writer in Philadelphia. She also holds the title of visiting scholar at The Alice Paul Center at Penn, and teaches courses at the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research. She is the author of Full Surrogacy Now: Feminism Against Family (Verso, 2019), and has translated several German books; she also publishes books with the ecological writing collective Out of the Woods. Sophie holds degrees in English (Oxford University), environmental policy (Oxford), politics (The New School) and human geography (University of Manchester). Her academic articles have appeared in peer-reviewed journals such as Signs and Feminist Theory; her non-academic writing in numerous venues including n+1, e-flux, Boston Review, The Nation, Dissent, Mal, Logic and The New York Times. Her income is all free-lance: you can support her at patreon.com/reproutopia.
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