Homo Mimeticus: A New Theory of Imitation–BOOK LAUNCH (Fri. Nov. 18, 4 pm CET, hybrid)


5 years ago the HOM project promised a new theory of imitation to face some of the main challenges of the present. Here it is, with Leuven UP! In this book launch, HOM/GM team members Niki Hadikoesoemo, Marina García-Granero and Giulia Rignano talk with Nidesh Lawtoo about the main insights and takeaways of Homo Mimeticus: A New Theory of Imitation (Freely available Open Access here). All are welcome, reception to follow, and on hybrid mode More information including Zoom link here.

Metamorphoses Seminar: Introducing Mimetic Studies

If it is true that humans are mimetic animals (or homo mimeticus), and if it is true that we are entering an epoch of catastrophic transformations (or Anthropocene), which metamorphoses do we want to promote to affirm survival in the present and future? Mimetic studies should have a role to play in charting metamorphoses for the future. More information available here.

Keynote II: Narrative as Body (Vittorio Gallese)

When navigating the parallel world of fictional narrative, we basically rely on the same brain-body resources shaped by our relation to mundane reality, since both realms are characterized by similar social practices and performative acts. Cognitive narratology reveals that readers make sense of complex narratives by relying on very few textual or discourse cues.

Introducing the Mimetic Turn (Nidesh Lawtoo)

If, for a long time, mimesis has been restricted to the logic of visual representation, aesthetic realism, and the metaphysics of sameness it presupposes, the ERC-funded project Homo Mimeticus overturns this perspective to foreground a re-turn to an immanent, affective, embodied, and relational conception of mimesis at play in different processes of becoming other. This introduction to The Mimetic Turn Conference (April 2022) presents some of the concepts driving this new theory of homo mimeticus.

Homo Mimeticus: Nidesh Lawtoo @ TEDx

Nidesh Lawtoo, TEDxKULeuven May 2022

To conclude the Homo Mimeticus Project, PI Nidesh Lawtoo takes the mimetic turn on the TEDx stage, where mimesis has been at play for quite some time. Addressing the timely question, “how to (re)structure the (de)structured,” Nidesh takes us on an untimely philosophical journey–from children’s mimicry to Socrates’ dialogues, emotions to emojis, the Greek stage to the TED stage–to show that imitation is constitutive of an original species he calls, homo mimeticus.

Viral Mimesis: The Patho(-)Logies of the Coronavirus (N. Lawtoo)

In this article, Nidesh Lawtoo argues that the human, all too human vulnerability to mimesis (imitation) is a central and so far underdiagnosed element internal to the Covid-19 pandemic crisis. Supplementing medical accounts of viral contagion, the chapter develops a genealogy of the concept of mimesis – from antiquity to modernity to the present – that is attentive to both its pathological and therapeutic or patho-logical properties. Read full article here.