Art Talks! is an event organised by the ICS Centre for Philosophy, Religion and Social Ethics. This year's event was...

Isabel Bader Theatre
93 Charles Street West, Toronto
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-afternoon event:  free
-evening performances (pay at the door):  $10 or $5 for students


"Narrative Imagination and Catharsis" by Richard Kearney

In this afternoon lecture Kearney will examine his thesis that the philosophical device of deconstruction has performed a valuable, if flawed, service in its critique of the varying Western conceptions of the imagination by stimulating new and more ethically sensitive interpretations of the imagination that are especially pertinent to the work of philosophy and religion today.

Richard Kearney holds the Charles B. Seelig Chair of Philosophy at Boston College. He has written several books on the important but neglected role that imagination plays in encouraging ethical sensitivity to issues of social justice, including The Wake of Imagination.

• See Ron Kuipers' interview with Richard Kearney in The Other Journal
3 Videos: interview with and lecture by Richard Kearney; panel discussion including Richard Kearney, Rebekah Smick, Anne Michaels, Mark Knight and Ron Kuipers


Kearney’s lecture will be followed by a multidisciplinary panel discussion. Panel members include, in addition to Kearney, Mark Knight (English, U. of T.), Ronald A. Kuipers (Phil. of Rel., ICS) and Canadian writer Anne Michaels. Rebekah Smick (Phil. Of Arts & Culture, ICS) will moderate.


A dramatic reading of plays and poetry will enact one of Kearney’s important suggestions that an ethically centered narrative imagination urges us to continue our involvement with, and reinterpretation of, those larger narratives that have historically called us to refigure ourselves. Three plays drawn from the 66 Books Project, a collective response to the King James Bible, will be performed under the direction of Ins Choi and will feature noted Toronto actor Susan Coyne. Anne Michaels will, for the first time in Canada, give a reading of her poem for that project, “The Crossing”. Choi, author of recent hit Kim’s Convenience, will premiere his new poetry-based solo show, Subway Stations of the Cross.

Richard Kearney’s lecture is sponsored through the Art Talks! program of the Institute for Christian Studies and the day as a whole is a collaborative cultural event co-sponsored by the Toronto School of Theology, the Institute for Christian Studies’ Centre for Philosophy, Religion, and Social Ethics (CPRSE), and Emmanuel College.