Think(er)ing with Epigenetics – 15-16th June 2017 – KU Leuven

In the context of our research group at KU Leuven on challenges in the postgenomic era, we would like to bring together ongoing discussions from various disciplines about the vast field of epigenetics. Epigenetics (re-)emerges in a politically and morally charged history of eugenics, biopolitics, and related debates on nature/nurture. Epigenetics is heralded by some as finally helping us to move beyond that history and its violent assumptions, while others warn for a reiteration of precisely those assumptions in terms of individual biochemistry (thereby obscuring socio-political and historical environmental factors again). Agendas of environmental justice seem as much strengthened as weakened by epigenetics, depending on the epistemological as well as ethical values performed by the respective research-designs. Indeed, the notion of ‘evidence’ cannot be taken for granted, and therefore we propose to ‘think and tinker with’ epigenetics as a mode of attention towards body-environment interactions, thus asking how these challenge scientific, moral and political assumptions.


  • Thursday, 15th June (room 00.74)

13h15 -13h30: Welcome & Registration

13h30 -14h00: Introduction by Katrin Solhdju (VUB & KU Leuven) & Kim Hendrickx (FWO & KU Leuven)

14h00 -15h00: Hype and Challenges of Molecular Epigenetics – Vanessa Lux (Ruhr University Bochum)

15h00 -16h00: Of Rats and Women: Figurations of Motherhood in Environmental Epigenetics – Ruth Müller (TU München)

16h00 -16h30: coffee break

16h30 -17h30: The Postgenomic Body: Another Plasticity is Happening – Maurizio Meloni (University of Sheffield)

17h30 -18h30: Turtling all the way down”? Some notes on interspecies epi- and symbiogenesis – Katrin Solhdju (Vrije Universiteit Brussel & KU Leuven)


  • Friday, 16th June (room 00.74)

9h30 -10h30: Can we Learn to Speculate with Epigenetics? – Kim Hendrickx (KU Leuven)

10h30 -10h45: coffee break

10h45 -11h45: Which Metaphysics for Epigenetics? – Didier Debaise (Université Libre de Bruxelles)

11h45 -12h15: Final Discussion

12h15: Goodbye lunch

For more information, see:

Participation is free but please register before June 9th:


Author: B.STS

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