By Tuesday 22 September 2020 No Comments

The Media Education Foundation presents a newly discovered recording of a seminal lecture now available for viewing.

The late cultural theorist Stuart Hall was one of the great intellectual and political figures of recent history. His voice is more necessary than ever in these unprecedented times. In this 2004 lecture – the basis of one of his most important essays – he demonstrates what made his theoretical contributions so relevant to contemporary events.

As Professor Susan Douglas of the University of Michigan says, “Here we see a stunning (and exemplary) display of Stuart’s brilliant ability to move between the theoretical and the often quotidian examples he would use to illustrate theory, and make it more clear. With virtually no notes and barely a pause, Stuart offers, by turns, an astute, dexterous, probing and, as always, humble disquisition about the relationship between biography and intellectual work. His reflections on the processes – the work, the struggles, the misrecognitions – that go into thinking are inspiring and comforting. For those of us who have always thought that hearing Stuart speak brought his written work to life, and who deeply miss, still, his brilliance and his humanity, Through the Prism of an Intellectual Life is a blessing. This tour de force is a must watch.”

“Stuart Hall was a great intellectual freedom fighter and theoretical genius as manifest in this famous lecture! Don’t miss it.” – Cornel West

“What a phenomenal gift! This recording of Stuart Hall’s talk at the Caribbean Reasonings conference offers us exceptional insight into the person, the politics, the method, the vision, and their profound interconnectedness. Those who already know his work will be awe-struck and those for whom this serves as an introduction will surely want more.” – Angela Davis

“Stuart Hall was always a uniquely gifted lecturer, but he never spoke more eloquently than he does in this magnificent talk, given at a crucial biographical moment for him, on a late return to the Caribbean. We see and hear him in inspirational mood, weaving together an astonishingly fluent synthesis of the key ideas from all the different stages of his work. Here is that astonishing combination of personal warmth, rhetorical splendour and intellectual seriousness which characterised his manner – which is so engaging as to make one want to stand up and join in the ovation he receives at the lecture’s end.” – David Morley

“In these extraordinarily challenging times, Stuart Hall remains, even after his death, a unique voice for “the vocation of the intellectual life.” In this emblematic lecture, he both elaborates and demonstrates how to be a political intellectual, how to understand the complexity and contingency of the present conjuncture in ways that will enable people to more effectively resist the forces at work, the systems of power, injustice and inequality. Hall challenges us to think what it means to think, and how to make thinking matter.” – Larry Grossberg

source: Media Education Foundation