[URBANTH-L] Summer Acad.: Mediators of Knowledge and Transregional Perspectives, Berlin

bvergara at sfsu.edu bvergara at sfsu.edu
Mon Mar 21 09:51:17 EST 2005

Summer Academy:‘Experts and Mediators of Knowledge in the 20th Century.
Transregional Perspectives’
Location:	Germany
Call for Papers Deadline:	2005-04-30

Summer Academy: ‘Experts and Mediators of Knowledge in the 20th Century:
Transregional Perspectives’

To be held in Schmoeckwitz, Berlin, September 4-11, 2005

Participants in this Summer Academy will discuss the circulation of knowledge
and cultural transfer processes in the tensile field of mutual relations and
interconnectivity. Particular emphasis will be placed on interaction among
non-European societies, Europe and the United States, as well as on interactions
between non-European societies. We will proceed from the assumption that these
contacts exerted a formative influence on all interacting parties, and that they
are embedded in the process of social and cultural globalization. The aim of the
Summer Academy is to examine and debate these processes without reproducing
Eurocentric assumptions about the linear transfer of knowledge.

The Summer Academy will focus on experts, translators and mediators of
knowledge. These individuals and groups, including local teachers, government
employees, mission catechists, traders and journalists, had to mediate and
translate between different worlds in colonial and post-colonial societies. In
the colonial period, these experts and mediators were able to gain a new
authority as representatives of knowledge, and they increasingly benefited from
the order of knowledge established by colonialism.

In the process, they entered into competition with other, often religiously
rooted orders of knowledge and their representatives—and with European experts
who claimed the exclusive monopoly on the ‘right knowledge’ and tried to push it
through. In this way, competing expert cultures and knowledge orders emerged
that interacted in manifold ways. Thus more recently the ‘experts’ in
international development agencies increasingly refer to ‘local knowledge’ and
‘local experts.’ In this process, however, local experts and knowledge are often
only just ‘constructed’ as ‘local.’

A closer look at experts and mediators of knowledge will enable us to reveal
complex, ‘interactive’ networks of competing orders of knowledge, orders which
resulted not only from an often hierarchical communication between
representatives of European and non-European societies, but also from
communication among non-European societies only. Moreover, we seek to provide
impulses for cooperation between regional research and the systematic disciplines.

We welcome candidates from the disciplines of history, anthropology, literature,
sociology, political sciences as well as area studies. Applicants should be at
the doctoral or postdoctoral level. Ph.D. holders should have received their
doctorate in the last five years. Proposed projects should employ a historical
perspective and emphasize connections beyond the national state. Travel expenses
and costs incurred during the stay in Berlin will be covered (pending the
definite confirmation of funding).

Application procedure:
To apply, please send the following documents in English:

   1. A curriculum vitae
   2. A statement about current research relevant to the Summer Academy’s theme;
length: up to 1,000 words (not counting cited references)
   3. The names and addresses (incl. e-mail) of two references 

Candidates will be informed in mid-May whether they have been accepted.
Participants will be asked to submit a full paper (10,000 words) in English by
end of July to be distributed to the other participants.

Convenors: Andreas Eckert(U amburg),Marianne Braig (FU Berlin), Shalini Randeria
(U Zurich)

Please send your application to:
	Dr. Felicitas Hentschke
Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin
Wallotstraße 19
14193 Berlin, Germany
e-mail: fh at wiko-berlin.de
Further Information:
Email: f.hentschke at wiko-berlin.de
Visit the website at http://www.wiko-berlin.de/kolleg/projekte/wegedw?hpl=1

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