Consent, Augment, Curve (against force)

Feb 4, 2023
  • Lisa Robertson



1:00 - 4:00 p.m.


Grand Luxe Hall, Western Front


$30 (includes a copy of Anemones: A Simone Weil Project)



To accompany the reading and talk by Lisa Robertson on Anemones: A Simone Weil Project (2021), she will host a workshop for writers.

On the workshop Robertson says:

“I hope we can talk and write through the ideas or actions of consent, augment, or curve, by drawing gregariously deviant lines among some texts by Simone Weil, Edouard Glissant, and Fred Moten.

This constellation came to me after I completed a small book on Simone Weil, Anemones, which includes my translation of her essay ‘What the Occitan Inspiration Consists Of’ (1942). In this essay, Weil cites Agathon’s speech from Plato’s Symposium, in order to open the idea that love is the practise of mutual consent, and that consent is what love shares with politics. By means of consent, love and just law remain the opposite of force Weil says. She was writing as a migrant refugee trying to leave Nazi occupied France. Now we read her in a different world, but a world not less fractured by force.

Moten, in Black and Blur (2017), posits his wildly fugal thinking on a statement by Glissant: “Consent not to be a single being.” For Moten consent is augmentative, permitting the opacity of the comrade. In his text ‘For Opacity’ (1990), Glissant states “Widespread consent to specific opacities is the most straightforward equivalent of non-barbarism.”

These texts can speak together if we give them that space. They share a baroque sensibility for the wild elliptical curve that has more than a single centre, the Keplerian curve that “won’t stop, keeps getting deeper… this constant irruptive unfolding” in Moten’s terms.

I would like to see what happens if we read, think, and write together for an afternoon in accordance with this irruptive curve, which is also the elliptical curvature of consent.”

The texts in discussion will be forwarded to participants upon registration and a copy of Robertson’s Anemones: A Simone Weil Project is included in the price.

Space is limited to 15 participants.

A portrait of Lisa Robertson. She is wearing green glasses and a blue blazer.

About the Artist

Lisa Robertson is a poet who moved from Vancouver to France in 2004. Until then she was a resident of East Vancouver, a collective member of the Kootenay School of Writing, a board member of Artspeak, for a number of years the poetry editor of Front Magazine, and the proprietor of Proprioception Books, an independent bookshop specializing in poetry. Her current work with communities and language extends in a few directions—she teaches writing occasionally in art schools across Europe, she continues to write essays for the contemporary visual arts, a practice she began in Vancouver in the early 90s, and she furthers her study of the culture, politics and poetics of the medieval troubadour poets of the Aquitaine, the region of France where she has lived since 2005. This open-ended project, called wide rime, attends to bird calls, site, translation, and the history of rhyme and lyric form, sometimes in collaboration with the poet sabrina soyer.


The Grand Luxe Hall is located on the second floor, which is accessed by a flight of 26 stairs. The second floor is not currently accessible to wheelchair users. Further details about accessibility at Western Front can be found here.


Presented in partnership with If I Can’t Dance, I Don’t Want To Be Part Of Your Revolution.

Western Front is a non-profit
artist-run centre in Vancouver.

We acknowledge the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ílwətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations as traditional owners of the land upon which Western Front stands.