• Conference

Certainty Undermined – Life-worlds and Knowledge in Transition

Global flows of various kinds have long been a core topic of cultural analysis. But now, more than ever before, the transnational movement of capital, people, and information impacts stock and labor markets, uproots social relations, and shakes communities and worldviews. People’s life-worlds – the domain of self-evident and shared practices, beliefs, values, and communication structures – are undergoing far-reaching changes comparable to those affecting class structures, socio-cultural milieus, and gender roles.


The conference will convene renowned speakers from a range of academic disciplines to address key questions of the IFK’s new research focus, which deals with the effects and changes recent denationalization and deterritorialization trends have wrought on patterns of everyday life and knowledge production. Topics will include the role of intellectuals in the global language system, various “glocal” contexts, the spread and limits of knowledge, as well as the political and cultural challenges raised by new transnational configurations of economic (dis)order. Contributions from literary, cultural, and media studies, history and anthropology will investigate symbolic forms in motion and modes of world-making in languages and images. Special emphasis will also be given to globalization’s repercussions for race, ethnicity, media, and the arts, and with regard to new spatial and temporal trajectories.


Conception: Ulf Hannerz (Department of Social Anthropology, Stockholm University)
Participants: Elisabeth Bronfen (English Department, Universität Zürich), Peter Burke (Emmanuel College, University of Cambridge), Jean Comaroff (Department of Anthropology, University of Chicago; Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory; IFK_Guest of Director), John L. Comaroff (Department of Anthropology and Social Sciences, University of Chicago; American Bar Foundation; IFK_Guest of Director), Thomas Fillitz (Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Universität Wien), Sabine Frühstück (Department of East Asian Languages and Cultural Studies, University of California Santa Barbara; IFK_Senior Fellow), Mary Gallagher (School of Languages & Literatures, University College Dublin), Beng Lan Goh (Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, National University of Singapore), Andreas Huyssen (Department of Germanic Languages, Columbia University), Koichi Iwabuchi (Faculty of International Research and Education, Waseda University, Tokyo), Mark LeVine (Department of History, University of California, Irvine), Celia Lury (Department of Sociology, Goldsmiths’ College, University of London), J. Lorand Matory (African and African-American Studies, Duke University), Abram de Swaan (Department of Sociology, University of Amsterdam)




Ort: IFK