Peter Banki

began his studies in philosophy and literature in 1988. Since then, he has studied with a number of major contemporary thinkers, including Jacques Derrida and Jean-Luc Nancy. He is currently living in Berlin on an exchange scholarship from the Freie Universität. He has published essays on Blanchot, Heidegger, Derrida, Freud, Lyotard and Lacoue-Labarthe in academic journals in both French and English. He is currently writing his dissertation in the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures at New York University under the supervision of Avital Ronell. The topic of his dissertation bears on the question of forgiveness in an epoch of crimes against humanity. Since 2003 he has participated in workshops and other activities with Felix Ruckert in Jagniatkow, Berlin and Black Rock City. Prior to this he worked in New York with Daniel Lepkoff, one of the founders of contact improvisation. He began dancing in 1997 with Annetta Luce, who taught him to feel his feet. Since 1999 he has sustained a regular practise of Iyengar Yoga. He also co-founded the electronic journal Contretemps in Sydney in 1998.

His Workshops
Cultural Trauma
In what ways are our erotic and SM fantasies related to the trauma of the Second World War, and in particular, of the holocaust?

In this ambitious workshop, we will attempt in the most careful and sensitive way to provide a place for the exploration of this difficult question. We will do so firstly by offering a chance for the open exchange of experiences and thoughts, and then by means of physical improvisation, with the use of one of Felix Ruckert’s scores. Finally, we will approach the question of SM play, whose script consciously or unconsciously is taken from the horror of the holocaust and/or the Second World War.

Essential to the concept of this workshop is that it will take two times, once in German, and once in English. It will be in German, because the German language is a privileged witness to this history; and in English, because – partly as a consequence of this history – English has become the world’s international language: the language of the “winners”.