|Governing through Contradictions.||Seminars and Colloquia||Ayşe ÇağlarUlrike Flader||
Turkey is currently governed by a regime which blurs the line between authoritarian and democratic rule. While some authors tend to interpret this state as a moment of transition towards full authoritarianism, this paper argues that we should rather understand the coevalness of democratic and non-democratic practices as a deliberate and “cunning” mode of government, which we call soft authoritarian.
|The “Sunny” Side Of The Holocaust. Dr. Endre Szántó’s Photo Album From His Forced Labour Service, 1940||Seminars and Colloquia||András LénártLudger HagedornIngo Zechner||
“Millions of images taken by SS propaganda teams and a smaller number of photographs taken by victims, bystanders and liberators have survived.” This is possibly the most cited sentence on the topic of Holocaust photography, written by Sybil Milton (Images of the Holocaust, 1986). However, in the case of Hungary only hundreds of images are known, and the systematic exploration of these is yet to take place.
|The Death and Rebirth of Democratic Internationalism: Controversies and Possibilities||Lecture||Claus OffeLudger HagedornMicheline Ishay||
The current nationalist wave has dampened hopes of managing an array of global challenges: economic, social, environmental, and public health emergencies, along with planning for the long-term impacts of technological innovations in fields like artificial intelligence and bioengineering.
This lecture addressed how a new internationalism could reinvigorate policies promoting global governance based on universal human rights. It addressed three questions: what can we learn from past internationalist movements toward a liberal global order? How did the neoliberal order, established after the Cold War, lead to today’s chronic crises? What are possibilities for a future and robust internationalism encompassing three levels: civil society, the state, and global governance?
|Democracy - A Fragile Way of Life||Lecture||Shalini RanderiaTill van Rahden||
After the Cold War ended, liberal democracy was taken for granted. Now it is in crisis: citizens distrust parliamentary politics, the people’s parties are losing members and votes, and social media are crowding out public debates. Challenging the sense of despair that informs recent studies on how democracy dies, Till van Rahden argued that it might prove more useful to explore what keeps it alive. A fruitful point of departure is the insight that democracy is not only a matter of elections and political parties, constitutions and parliaments, but is grounded in democratic experiences. The attention is less on how democratic government works, but on what equality, freedom, and justice feel like. A focus on democratic forms and aesthetics allows us to revisit the cultural and social foundations of democracy. No matter how stable a democracy may seem, it will wither and perish without ways of life that allow for and encourage democratic experiences.
|History of the Shoah and Politics of History in Post-Communist Lithuania||Lecture||Christoph DieckmannMarci ShoreViktoras Bachmetjevas||
History has become a deeply contentious topic in the post-communist space, particularly with regard to World War II, Communism, and Nationalism. Memories are not static, and our increasing historical knowledge is embedded within a dynamic contemporary context. This means that both history and the politics of history are developing and changing. Christoph Dieckmann, one of the leading historians of the German occupation in Lithuania, shared his experiences and impressions of the politics of history in Eastern Europe from the perspective of a German historian.
|Alien Logic||Lecture||Ayşe ÇağlarMartin BurckhardtTimothy Snyder||
Bronislaw Malinowski has shown with his ethnological studies that a supposedly primitive society can be of astonishing complexity, as well as why the structure of this order remains obscure to its members. Obviously, modern societies also suffer from system blindness – why else is digitization said to have chiliastic, diabolic, magical powers? In a continuation to his cultural-theoretical investigations on the genealogy and philosophy of the machine, Martin Burckhardt explores the question of how the self-enchantment of rationality can occur, and to what extent the operating system of the attention economy can be read as an outsourced unconscious. This, in turn, leads back to the point of departure: what perspective must a contemporary social anthropologist take in order to read the present?
|Balaton. Novellen||Lecture||Ludger HagedornNoémi Kiss||Facebook-Stream|