Is "art" free? What is it for Art to claim the ethical?
While she is best known as a postcolonial theorist (among others by her groundbreaking text "Can the Subaltern Speak?"), Gayatri Spivak describes herself as a "para-disciplinary, ethical philosopher". Her reputation was first made for her translation and preface to Derrida's Of Grammatology (1976) and she has since applied deconstructive strategies to various theoretical engagements and textual analyses: from Feminism, Marxism, and Literary Criticism to, most recently, Postcolonialism.
„My position is generally a reactive one. I am viewed by Marxists as too codic, by feminists as too male-identified, by indigenous theorists as too committed to Western Theory. I am uneasily pleased about this.“
Gayatri Spivak is University Professor and the Director of the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society at Columbia University in New York. She has taught in numerous academic contexts, among others at the Independent Study program at the Whitney. Her books include Myself Must I Remake: The Life and Poetry of W. B. Yeats (1974), Of Grammatology (translation with critical introduction of Jacques Derrida, De la grammatologie, 1976), In Other Worlds: Essays in Cultural Politics (1987), Selected Subaltern Studies (ed., 1988), The Post-Colonial Critic: Interviews, Strategies, Dialogues (1990), Thinking Academic Freedom in Gendered Post-Coloniality (1993), Outside in the Teaching Machine (1993), Old Women (translation with critical introduction of two stories by Mahasweta Devi, 1999), A Critique of Postcolonial Reason: Towards a History of the Vanishing Present (1999), Death of a Discipline (2003), Other Asias (2005), and most recently An Aesthetic Education in the Era of Globalization (2012).