Amid the omnipresent talk of globalization and international community, new border fences and walls are being erected all over the world: around states, occupied territories, residential complexes, and to separate public from private space. Many of these borders are visible from afar, others are drawn by language tests or using biometric procedures.
Es ist ein gutes Land
In 2018 we celebrated the centenary of the foundation of the Republic of Austria. But what does Austria actually mean?
In our series “Es ist ein gutes Land. Republikanische Geschichtsstunde(n)“ (It is a good country. Republican history lesson/s), Wolfgang Maderthaner and his discussion partners discuss the history and topical events of this region, which within changing borders and a wide range of attributed meanings has come to bear the name “Austria”.
The series „Democracy Reloaded“ analyses current developments – not as a crisis of democracy, but as a „disintegration of orders“, as a new social division whose effect is felt in the most diverse areas: in the relationship between individuals and society, with respect to the new media situation, with a view to religions, and in relation to the issues that have emerged in the context of refugee movements.
The crisis of enlightenment
1914 was a crisis of the West, because it represents the culmination of insane Enlightenment understanding that leads us from industrialization to the industrialization of murder and the absoluteness of a liberal and rational economic order. To understand 1914 and 2014, we therefore need to understand the Enlightenment – its potential, contradictions, distortions and reception.
One of the most profound changes in our societies is their pluralization. This is a relatively recent evolution. And it is an irreversible fact: there is no way back to a non-pluralistic, homogeneous society. This is a straightforward statement. But it is not so easy to analyse the question of what this actually means. How do we define a pluralistic society? What exactly is becoming more plural? And what consequences can we expect? In other words: What does it mean to live in a pluralistic society?
Diaspora. Erkundungen eines Lebensmodells
Why are we talking about Diaspora? Why not parallelism, multiculturalism, exile, migration or integration? Because, of course, these are all topics that are treated here in one form or another. But all these terms are master categories, as Saskia Sassen calls them, categories whose immediate, obvious uniqueness obscures the shifts and changes we want to see.