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Personal profile

Research interests

Tom Bunyard’s primary research interests are focussed on the theoretical work of Guy Debord and the Situationist International, and on Debord’s central concept of ‘spectacle’. In 2011, he completed a PhD on this topic at Goldsmiths, University of London. The thesis traced the genealogy of Debord’s theory, interpreted it through its primary theoretical and philosophical influences, and foregrounded the central importance of time, history and praxis to Debord’s thought. Tom has recently completed a monograph on this topic. Titled Debord, Time and Spectacle: Hegelian Marxism and Situationist Theory, the book reconstructs and evaluates the conceptual framework that underlies Debord’s claims. In doing so, it places particular emphasis on the Hegelian and existential dimensions of Debord’s work, and focusses on his concerns with historical agency.

This study of the Debord’s work has led to an interest in the temporality of modern society, and related notions of social pathology. Tom is currently pursuing this by looking at new readings of Hegel’s philosophy, and at contemporary ‘value-form’ interpretations of Marx’s mature work. More broadly, his interests include: Marx and Marxism; Hegelian philosophy; existentialism; aesthetics and the avant-garde; continental philosophy; cultural and critical theory; philosophy of history.

Supervisory Interests

Tom has been involved in PhD supervision since 2013, and has brought two projects to completion. He would be interested in supervising research projects in areas such as Debord and the Situationists, Marx and Marxism, Hegel and reactions to Hegel’s philosophy, contemporary critical and cultural theory, and continental philosophy.  

Scholarly biography

Tom studied for his PhD at the Centre for Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths, University of London. His thesis was on the Hegelian Marxist dimensions of Guy Debord’s theory of spectacle. After completing this PhD in 2011, Tom taught courses in cultural and critical theory at the University of East London, Middlesex University, and the University of Arts, London. Between 2012 and 2013, he worked as convenor of Goldsmiths’ MA in Cultural Theory, and in 2014, he started working in the Humanities Programme at the University of Brighton. 

Whilst working at Brighton, Tom was able to complete a large monograph on Debord’s theory. The book reconstructs Debord’s Hegelian Marxism through reading his work in the light of its primary theoretical and philosophical influences. Through doing so, it uses a discussion of Debord’s central interests in temporality to develop a holistic reading of his work, and to thereby explain how the various aspects of Debord’s oeuvre cohere as elements cohere.

Tom’s current work is an attempt to build on that study by drawing out and developing the aspects of Debord’s theory that seem most pertinent and viable today. 

Knowledge exchange

Tom is: an associate editor of the Marx and Philosophy Review of Books; a peer reviewer for Theory Culture and Society, Critical Studies, Studies in Social and Political Thought, and Bloomsbury’s philosophy book series; a member of the organisational committee of the Marx and Philosophy Society; and a contributor to Brighton University’s Centre for Applied Philosophy Politics and Ethics. 

 

Events, conferences and conference papers

Organised and co-organised events

'Has the Future Been Cancelled?', lecture series, The University of Brighton, October 2019 - March 2020

'Critical Theory in (a Time of) Crisis', joint postgraduate conference hosted by The University of Brighton and Sussex University, November 2019

'On the Reproduction of Capitalist Society', two talks on critical theory and social reproduction by Kirstin Munro and Chris O'Kane, The University of Brighton, May 2019

‘The “Realisation” of Art and Politics in the Work of the Situationist International’, workshop, The University of Brighton, July 2018

'When is Disagreement Meaningful?', a workshop led by Gabriel Martin, The University of Brighton, May 2018

‘Neurotic Conditions – A Workshop and Lecture with Benjamin Noys’, December 2017

‘150 Years of Das Kapital: The Critique of Capital and the Critique of Labour – A Workshop on Vol.1 of Capital, Introduced and Led by Werner Bonefeld’, London, February 2017

‘Weird Realism’, a workshop with Benjamin Noys, The University of Brighton, February 2016, 

Workshop on Marx’s ‘On the Method of Political Economy’, The Marx and Philosophy Society, London, February 2015

‘Common Ground’, Goldsmiths, University of London, June 2013

‘Marx and Philosophy’, Goldsmiths, University of London, June 2008. 

‘Contemporary Marxist Thought’, Goldsmiths, University of London, April 2007

Talks and Conference Papers

'Demagogy and Social Pathology: Wendy Brown and Robert Pippin on the Pathologies of Neoliberal Subjectivity', The University of Brighton, September 2019

'The Frankfurt School, Materialist Dialectics and Marxism', University of Surrey, March 2019

'Temporality and Strategy in Guy Debord's Hegelian Marxism', (Dis)placing Space-Time: Topological Atrategies and Abstract Continuities, Kingston University, London, November 2018

‘Guy Debord’s Concepts of Life, Non-Life and Spectacle’, Historical Materialism Annual Conference, The School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, November 2016

‘The Critique of Political Economy and Critical Political Economy’, University of Brighton, May, 2016

‘Subject-Object Unity and Workers’ Councils in Guy Debord’s Theory of Spectacle’, Never Work!, Cardiff University, July 2015

‘Marx’s 1857 Introduction to the Grundrisse’, Workshop on Marx’s ‘On the Method of Political Economy’, The Marx and Philosophy Society, London, February 2015 

‘Dialectical, Strategic Thought’, Historical Materialism Annual Conference, The School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, November 2014

‘Closure and Subject-Object Unity in French Hegelianism’, University of Brighton, March 2014

‘Debord: Temporality, Praxis and Ethics’, University of Brighton, November 2013 

‘The Aestheticisation of the Historical Negative in the Work of Guy Debord and the Situationist International’, The Politics of Critique, University of Brighton, July 2012

‘The Aesthetics of the Absolute’, Situationist Aesthetics: The S.I., Now, University of Sussex, June 2012

‘The End of History and the End of Pre-History’, The London Conference in Critical Thought, Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities, Birkbeck, London, June 2012

‘The “Realisation of Philosophy” in the Work of the Situationist International’, Fifth Critical Theory Conference of Rome, Loyola University, Chicago, Rome Campus, May 2012

‘Temporality and Praxis in the Work of Guy Debord and the Situationist International’, Historical Materialism Annual Conference, The School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, November, 2011

Hegel, Marx and the Possibilities of Presuppositionless Praxis’, The Research Group in Continental Philosophy Seminar Series on Hegel, Goldsmiths, University of London, November 2009

The Situationists and the “Historical Significance” of Détournement’, Historical Materialism Annual Conference, The School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, November 2008

‘Lautréamont and the Aesthetics of Negativity’, A Day of Crisis, Goldsmiths, University of London, November 2008

‘Negativity and Détournement’, Faith and Fantasy, Goldsmiths, University of London, June 2008 

‘Theory and the Institution’, Attack the Headquarters, Goldsmiths, University of London, May 2008

‘Debord, Hegel and Historical Thought’, Free University of Berlin, January 2008

‘Guy Debord and Historical Thought’, Thinking with History,Goldsmiths, University of London, November 2007 

‘Debord, Unity and Mutual Recognition’, Historical Materialism Annual Conference, The School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, November 2007

‘Debord’s spectacle, Hegel’s Christianity and the Rational State’,Image and Imagination, Goldsmiths, University of London, December 2006 

‘Debord’s Debt to Hegel’, Goldsmiths College Graduate Seminar Series, Goldsmiths, University of London, February 2006

‘Interpolating Interpellation’, Spectacle and the Spectacular, Buckingham Chilterns University College, April 2004

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  • 5 Similar Profiles
demagogy Social Sciences
social pathology Social Sciences
Marxism Social Sciences
critical theory Social Sciences
cultural studies Social Sciences
pathology Social Sciences
subjectivity Social Sciences
Guy Debord Arts & Humanities

Research Output 2009 2019

Demagogy and Social Pathology: Wendy Brown and Robert Pippin on the Pathologies of Neoliberal Subjectivity

Bunyard, T., 14 Sep 2019, (Accepted/In press) In : Araucaria. 21, 42, p. 505-527

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
File
demagogy
social pathology
pathology
subjectivity
rhetoric

The Realisation of Philosophy

Bunyard, T., 1 Sep 2019, (Accepted/In press) The Situationist International: A Critical Handbook. Hemmens, A. & Zacarias, G. (eds.). Pluto Press

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter

The Situationists, Hegel, and Hegelian Marxism in France

Bunyard, T., 1 Sep 2019, (Accepted/In press) The Situationist International: A Critical Handbook. Hemmens, A. & Zacarias, G. (eds.). Pluto Press

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter

Critical Theory and Cultural Studies

Bunyard, T., 1 Jun 2018, The Sage Handbook of Frankfurt School Critical Theory. Best, B., Bonefeld, W. & O'Kane, C. (eds.). UK: Sage, p. 1348-1364 17 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter

critical theory
cultural studies
school theory
Frankfurt School
mass culture

Debord, Time and Spectacle: Hegelian Marxism and Situationist Theory

Bunyard, T., 20 Nov 2017, Leiden: Brill. 430 p. (Historical Materialism)

Research output: Book/ReportBook - authored

File
Marxism
capitalist society
dialogue
history
evidence

Activities 2017 2018

  • 1 Editorial work
  • 1 Invited talk

Temporality and Strategy in Debord’s Hegelian Marxism

Tom Bunyard (Presenter)
23 Nov 2018

Activity: External talk or presentationInvited talk