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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Institut für Europäische Ethnologie

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin | Institut für Europäische Ethnologie | Termine | „Arrested futures – imperial formations: (post-) socialist & nonaligned perspectives on Europe’s global entanglements

„Arrested futures – imperial formations: (post-) socialist & nonaligned perspectives on Europe’s global entanglements

Wann 10.02.2017 von 10:00 bis 13:00 (Europe/Berlin / UTC100) iCal
Wo 107a

Invitation to the next workshop

Lab “Critical Europeanization Studies” at Institut für Europäische Ethnologie, Humboldt-Universität, Møhrenstraße 40-41, room 107a

Friday, 10th of February 2017, 10:00-13:00

prepared by Jens Adam, Gabika Bockaj & Sebastian Pampuch


In this session we would like to discuss the potentials and risks that arise from a conceptualization of “Europe” as a crossing point of different imperial formations. With this notion we don’t mean to refer exclusively to the unquestionably most relevant cases of west-European colonial projects as long-lasting and violent forms of “European world-making”. We suggest to include the relations of power, political imaginaries and “imperial debris” produced and/or mobilized by the Ottoman or Austrian-Hungarian Empires, devastating imperial wars or state socialism into critical inquiries about contemporary Europe as “product and producer of global entanglements”. As a consequence places and constellations “inside Europe” should be analysed as effects of such changing and overlapping relational geographies.


From this perspective (state)-socialism constitutes a specifically disturbing example: On the one hand, it mobilised – not least in colonial constellations – emancipatory and liberating potentials as well as visions of global convivialities based on ideas of equality as a counter-concept to imperial domination. On the other hand, its “universal” categories of “evolution”, “development” or “modernity” – clearly rooted in European Enlightenment – evoked a multitude of unequal power relations and violent effects once put into practice. Against this background we would like to focus on examples of globally entangled histories of socialist activism and the non-alignment-movement to discuss the following questions:


  • Can we consider a conceptualization of “Europe” as an ever changing crossing point of different “imperial formations” as a suitable frame for critical analyses of contemporary processes of Europeanization/European “world-making projects”?
  • What (new) perspectives do we get on “Europe as producer and product of global entanglements” taking socialism as analytical starting point?
  • Which visions about global futures and convivialities have been mobilized by socialist/non-alignment movements? How do our concepts/archives of Europe change when we take these “arrested futures” into consideration?
  • Could we methodologically combine a focus on “struggles” with an interest in a) “projects of conviviality” (mobilized/contested in such struggles) and  b) “trajectories” (paths taken/not taken by these struggles) to get suitable analytical units.


We invite all participants to take part actively in the discussion and to broaden the scope of these questions!