Workshop "The Idea of Cosmopolitanism ...

- only by invitation -


"The Idea of Cosmopolitanism: Its Contingencies, Challenges, and Promises"

Date: 11.12.09

Venue: MPI zur Erforschung multireligiöser und multiethnischer Gesellschaften, Göttingen, Hermann-Föge-Weg 11, Library (Halle)

Organizers: Ewa Morawska (University of Essex) and Magdalena Nowicka (LMU Munich)

The social scientists’ renewed interest in cosmopolitanism as an analytical tool to investigate present-day sociocultural phenomena draws attention to a number of questions regarding the relationship of this concept to notions such as multiculturalism, transnationalism, and identities and commitments at local, national, and global levels. In view of a deluge of studies informed by these ideas, often vaguely defined, and the resulting cacophony of discourse about important processes evolving in the contemporary world, we badly need to examine the notion of cosmopolitanism as an orientation and practice together in the focused and systematic way: its generating and sustaining (hindering) contexts, both structural and agentic; the skills or competence it involves; its relation with lower-level (local, national) identities and commitments.

Following short introductory statements by the invited workshop participants on the above issues, there will be an open discussion of the contingencies, challenges, and promises of the idea of cosmopolitanism as a concept informing social-science analyses of contemporary-world processes.