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Fellow 2023/2024Marcus Quent

Fellowship Term: 10/2023 – 02/2024

Marcus Quent is a research associate at the Department of Art History, Art Theory and Aesthetics at the Berlin University of the Arts. After studying Philosophy and Theater Studies at the Leipzig University, the Aberystwyth University in Wales, and the Berlin University of the Arts, he completed his PhD on artistic constructions of time in Theodor W. Adorno, Gilles Deleuze and Alain Badiou in 2020. His habilitation project investigates how real and possible ends of the world affect philosophical thought confronting finitude and infinity. Marcus was a visiting scholar at the New School for Social Research, New York in 2018, and a fellow at the Nietzsche Kolleg in Weimar in 2020. In 2022, he was a fellow at the Leipzig Lab of the Leipzig University and a visiting scholar at the School of Visual Arts, New York. Most recently, together with Alexander García Düttmann, he published the volume “Die Apokalypse enttäuscht” [The Apocalypse is disappointing].

In the spotlight: Marcus Quent

Marcus Quent

Apocalyptic Present(ism): Constructions of Time

The last four decades have confronted us with both the liberal and the postmodern version of the “end of history.” Today, with climate change, the present seems challenged by an existentially menacing and at once plain version of the end. Said end carries a repetition or return of discourses of the age of nuclear threat. In my philosophical research project, nuclear threat and climate change will be analyzed as two crucial events with specific temporalities within the configuration of the “absolute present.” I am interested in how the status of the so far dominant configurations of the “contemporary” or the “absolute present” change when confronted with apocalyptic temporalities and related to temporal structures of the “Anthropocene.” In doing so, the research project tries to overcome what can be described as a mutual stabilization of catastrophism and presentism in our construction of time: On the one hand, the endless or absolute present produces catastrophic consequences; on the other hand, the impending event of catastrophe retroactively sets the endless time-space of the present absolute. How must we think the construction of time without getting trapped in the political impasse of this mutual stabilization?