Atlanta Theory Club

Atlanta Theory Club is a place for people of all walks of life to gather, discuss and pursue a greater understanding of critical culture theory. Founded by David Stead and in conjunction with Murmur, ATC offers an accessible space for people who might not consider themselves sociologists or philosophers to engage with in depth discussions. ATC reflects the DIY ethos and community centered outreach of Murmur’s mission statement to highlight underrepresented portions of the Atlanta community.

Founded back in 2013 ATC has discussed such readings as Chris Kraus’ ‘I Love Dick’, ‘The Panama Papers’, James Baldwin’s ‘The Devil Finds Work’, and Barbara Kruger’s ‘Remote Control’. Theory Club is meant to reflect the diverse interest of the participants in attendance so at the end of each meeting a different member is offered the opportunity to choose the next text. Steadman prefers this type of inclusivity but is also considering moving in a more curated direction so to include more diversity in author selection. “I want people to choose the readings but I also want the readings to center on people who don’t get as much attention or exposure”, Steadman told me over coffee at Park Grounds.

David also remarked on the inherent obstacle of running the club,”Theory is underrepresented in general.” There are very few outlets outside of college and university settings to discuss these topics, which is why he believes theory club is so important. ATC provides an open space to engage people in discussions on tough topics. As public space becomes more privatized places like these need to be supported and nurtured to keep a sense of community and local identity. Which is another goal of ATC. We have moved away from speaking and having public discussions that are not public protests. The internet is a way to engage people in your community but the anonymity that it allows is much different than speaking face to face with others. Theory Club facilitates a time and space to dive deep, reflect and engage on more than surface level talking points.  

The next meeting is Tuesday December 13th at Murmur. The reading is ‘Notes on Metamodernism’ by Timotheus Vermeulen and Robin van den Akker. Discussion starts at 7pm. The reading can be found hereCome out, get engaged and join the discussion.

Written by: Stephen Wilkins (@damngladtomeetcha)