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23-26 July, gdc summer school

global dis:connect summer school 2024  
From 22-26 July 2024, global dis:connect will welcome MA and doctoral students from the humanities as well as creative professionals at any stage of their careers to meet and discuss in Munich for a summer school that will concentrate on Cultural infrastructure(s)from ‘dis:connective perspectives’. We will pay particular attention to disruptions, disturbances and absences in processes of globalisation, which we have hitherto tended to see in terms of ever-increasing connectivity. Seen from a global perspective, cultural infrastructure is characterised above all by major disparities.
The summer school will allow the participants to present their own projects on the topic and will feature several master classes with renowned scholars as well as art and film presentations. All sessions will be held in English.
global dis:connect promotes dialogue between scholarship and art as coequal means to approach dis:connective phenomena of globalisation. Such phenomena often leave few traces in archives and defy direct observation in many cases, but artistic practice can often reveal and provide access to them. It is through art, film, theatre, design and architecture that cultural infrastructures and the absences, interruptions and detours they reveal and produce have recently been thematised.
Participants can propose the presentation format that best fits their work, be it an academic paper, a film screening, an artistic intervention, moderated discussions or slide shows.
The deadline for applications is 1 March 2024.  
Organisers: Christopher Balme, Nikolai Brandes, Hanni Geiger, Nic Leonhardt and Tom Menger, Käte Hamburger Research Centre global dis:connect, Munich.
Please click here for accessing the call for papers.  
Please note: the summer school is a closed event. Parallel to the summer school, global dis:connect however invites you to its annual lecture on the same topic by performance scholar Shannon Jackson on 22 July 2024.
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24-25 April, Disconnections in wartime 1750-1945

Perhaps nothing demonstrates the complexities of globalisation more clearly than war. The international reverberations of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have painfully exposed the interconnected nature of modern economies and our vulnerability to forces beyond our control, prompting anxious speculations about deglobalisation. Yet, experts agree that the more likely outcome is not isolation, but instead, changing geographies of connection. Similarly, recent historical scholarship has complicated conventional understandings of war as a dividing force, instead emphasizing both the connections and disconnections that it brings in its wake. In wartime, enemies are dehumanised in government propaganda, travel is disrupted, and trade blockades are enforced. Wartime is associated with absences, interruptions, and detours, as lives are lost, scientific exchanges are cut off, and mobilized populations find themselves transported far from home. Yet, war can also create new spaces of interaction and encounter, sometimes across enemy lines. Some of these exchanges are illicit, such as smugglers who evade military blockades, or spies who penetrate enemy territory. Others are more overt, between prisoners of war and their captors, or surgeons who treat enemy combatants. War can provide the impetus for new connections and the widening of geographical horizons in the pursuit of resources, sometimes with lasting consequences. War, in other words, is the optimal lens through which to trace global connections and disconnections.  

Place & date: Munich, 24-25 April 2024

Organisers: Callie Wilkinson and Tom Menger (LMU Munich)

Venue: Käte Hamburger Research Centre global dis:connect, Maria-Theresia-Straße 21, 81675 Munich

  More information on the programme and the registration will be published shortly.
Please register here by 17 March.
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4-5 April, Agriculture and the production of the Global South, 1900s-1960s

Workshop at the Käte Hamburger Research Centre global dis:connect, LMU Munich  4-5 April 2024 The importance of agriculture and extractive industries to the making of the Global South in the 20th century has been obfuscated by the resonance of modernisation theory, dependency theory and development economics since the Second World War. With this workshop, themed Agriculture and the production of the Global South, 1900s-1960s, we seek to move beyond the rigid dualism of postwar models of growth and development by excavating processes and trajectories in the Global South and Global North that reveal the importance of agriculture and extractive production to the making of our contemporary world. Organisers: Paula Vedoveli, Judd Kinzley Information on the programme will be published soon. Please register here by 28 March. Continue Reading

18-19 March, climate change, empire and the legacies of environmental determinism

We live in a time when concern about human effects on the environment and climate are greater than ever. For much of human history, however, the opposite was true, and environments’ and climates’ effects on people were often the more pressing concern. Environmental or climatic determinism – the idea that people are shaped physically, culturally and even morally – by their environments has a long and often insidious history.

Determinist thinking had particular utility in the age of European and global empires in the 19th and 20th centuries, taking on new forms amidst attempts to expand and justify imperial dominance. Everything from ‘energy’ to racial characteristics and from ‘civilisational success’ to the limits of habitability were seen as environmentally and climatically determined. Today, these ideas are once again being reconfigured in new and troubling ways, such as in the deterministic language sometimes employed around climate and migration, which risks echoing racist, early 20th-century visions of ‘nomadic hordes’. With the Anthropocene concept placing human and planetary histories and futures on the same scale, tracing the language of environmental determinism has become imperative.

  This two-day workshop, hosted by the Käte Hamburger Research Centre global dis:connect at the LMU Munich, will thus contextualise environmentally determinist ideas historically and examine their imperial legacies in the face of today’s climate crisis.  

Place & date: Munich, 18-19 March2024

Organiser: Lachlan Fleetwood (LMU Munich)

Venue: Käte Hamburger Research Centre global dis:connect, Maria-Theresia-Straße 21, 81675 Munich

  Please click here to download the programme.
Please register here by 11 March.
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CANCELLED! 22-23 February, archival f(r)ictions

On 22 and 23 Feb. 2024, the Center will hold an international workshop focusing on the topic of "archival f(r)ictions" in curatorial and artistic film practice.

The workshop invites in a transdisciplinary dialogue on the colonial legacies of film archives. By making use of invention, imagination and speculation, artists and curators have explored the possibilities of engaging critically with the historical narratives contained in the archive, appropriating and transforming them. In this context, fiction has frequently served as a means to interrogate official histories and the legacies of the colonial past. In works by John Akomfrah, Filipa César, Tamika Galanis, Payal Kapadia, Zineb Sedira, Fiona Tan, Ala Younis, Akram Zaatari – to name just a few – the archive has become a site of subversive fiction and artistic resistance. In the framework of “global dis:connect”, the workshop addresses the potential of dis:connections, of the counterhegemonic f(r)ictions produced by imagining other (hi)stories from which alternative memories and futures may emerge. The focus lies on artistic and curatorial practices that produce dissonances and allochronisms through fictional narratives that investigate and rework the histories contained and preserved in archives.

Place & date: Munich, 22-23 February 2024

Organisers: Fabienne Liptay (University of Zurich), Laura McMahon (University of Cambridge), Sujit Sivasundaram (University of Cambridge)

Venue: Käte Hamburger Research Centre global dis:connect, Maria-Theresia-Straße 21, 81675 Munich

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guided tour through the exhibition “travelling back: reframing a 19-century exhibition from Munich to Brazil”

Guided tour with the curator Sabrina Moura at Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte Munich, time and date will be announced shortly. 

Travelling Back presents a critical perspective on the narratives and collections Bavarian scientists Johann Baptist von Spix (1781–1826) and Carl Friedrich Philipp von Martius (1794–1868) brought from Brazil to Munich in the 19th century. The exhibition follows their extensive three-year journey across the Brazilian hinterland, including the Amazonian region.

Spanning 14 000 km, this expedition took place from 1817 to 1820 and was later chronicled in the multi-volume publication Reise in Brasilien (Travels in Brazil – 1823), providing a personal account of the scientists' encounters and perceptions of the country's varied landscapes, cultures and wildlife.

During their travels, Spix and Martius interacted with various indigenous groups and gathered numerous ethnographic, botanical and zoological specimens. These materials became foundational for several Bavarian institutions, like the Bavarian State Collections of Zoology and Botany, as well as the Königlich Ethnographische Sammlung, now the Museum Fünf Kontinente, established in 1862. Beyond tangible artifacts, these collections also treat the history of Isabella Miranha and Johann Juri, two indigenous children brought to Munich in 1820, who died tragically soon after their arrival. Unlike the scientists' evident presence in the city's landscape, the history of these children is marked by silences and absences in public memorial spaces.

The exhibition raises crucial questions about the coloniality underpinning the scientific pursuits of the natural-history project between Munich and Brazil in the 19th century. It examines the various displays and interpretations of Spix and Martius's collections from their arrival in Germany to the present, and it sheds light on the dis:connectivities of knowledge production behind these scientific endeavours. The idea is not only to inquire into the public reception of these experiences through a history of the gaze, but also to draw a critical examination through the lenses of present-day dialogues and initiatives. This includes new scientific practices of knowledge restitution, literary interpretations and contemporary perspectives from artists like Micheliny Verunschk (Brazil), Frauke Zabel (Germany), Yolanda Gutiérrez (Germany/ Mexico), Igor Vidor (Brazil), Elaine Pessoa (Brazil) and Gê Viana (Brazil).

Curator: Sabrina Moura, fellow at Käte Hamburger Research Centre global dis:connect   Continue Reading