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MC: Doris Bachmann-Medick (Part I): Concepts of Culture

When Nov 10, 2015
from 10:00 to 02:00
Where Phil I, GCSC, R. 001
Contact Name
Contact Phone (+49) 0641 99 30053
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Introduction to contemporary concepts of culture and approaches/discussions in the study of culture
This first part of the MC series is meant to give the (new) members of the GCSC an introduction to the rich arsenal of concepts and discussions in the field of Kulturwissenschaften / study of culture.
Working at the GCSC in the field of the study of culture confronts us with various concepts of culture. Of course, the GCSC does not follow any single understanding of culture. It rather wants to encourage its members to reflect on the question: Which specific concept of culture might suit my individual dissertation project? Beyond this, the relation between culture and society as well as questions of culture and power are also topics of discussion. As culture is not only an object of our study but is implied in the very mode of research itself, we need to develop a conscious use of the concept of culture (and society) for our own work.
This MC consists of

  • an introductory lecture: here, an overview of the most important contemporary concepts of culture (culture as text, culture as performance, culture as translation etc.) will be given. The range of culture concepts to be critically discussed will run from a holistic understanding of culture as a system of meanings up to the advocacy of a pluralization of cultures. Here, difference-oriented and anti-essentialist understandings of culture come to the fore (culture as negotiation of differences, as hybridization, culture as travel).
  • a discussion of a thought- provoking text which might give new impulses for a changed approach.

Basic Requirement for Preparation:
James Clifford: Traveling Cultures, in: J.C.: Routes: Travel and Translation in the Late Twentieth Century. Cambridge, MA/London: Harvard UP 1997, 17-46(German translation available).

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