Research Seminar: Foreign fighters: Violence and modern subjectivity – University of Copenhagen

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Research Seminar: Foreign fighters: Violence and modern subjectivity

CRIC invites to the research seminar 'Foreign Fighters: Violence & Modern Subjectivity' with Dietrich Jung, CRIC-partner, and professor at the Centre for Middle East Studies, University of Southern Denmark.

The seminar will revolve around Dietrich Jung's paper on foreign fighters, as presented by the title and recently published in Middle East Insights.

Registration:

Please register at tg@ifs.ku.dk no later than Thursday, february 4th, 2016.

Abstract:

The seminar takes its point of departure in the article ”Foreign Fighters: Comparative Reflections on Syria and Spain.” However, it is not the purpose of the seminar to discuss this article in details. Rather, this article serves as a mutually shared platform to generate a broader discussion on the question of the role of violence in modern subjectivity formation. According to the hegemonic liberal imaginary of the emancipation of a reflexive, rational, self-interested and expressive individual, modern subjectivity formation is supposed to take place in a pacified world. A phenomenon such as foreign fighters who were raised in liberal democratic societies, therefore, appears to be a pathology of modernity that calls for therapeutic measures in order to disappear. Yet, this hegemonic narrative of liberalism is in stark contrast to the course of modern history. The twentieth century witnessed a continuing series of wars and violent conflicts which to not correspond to the liberal imaginary of the modern subject. Starting from the enthusiastic move to the battlefields of the First World War through the series of civil wars in Europe, for which the Spanish Civil War was just one example, to the current war in Syria historical events seemingly have proven the liberal imaginary to be wrong. The seminar attempts to discuss this surprising exclusion of the role of violence in scholarly approaches to modern subjectivity formation and possible research strategies to include it in our understanding of the rise of the modern subject.

About research seminars at CRIC:

The research seminar is a forum for academic debate, organized around the paper, and is conducted on the assumption that the paper has been read by participants.

Time and place

The seminar will be held in CRIC’s meeting room (25.0.01), Øster Farimagsgade 5, 1353 Copenhagen K, February 8th, 2016 from 13.30 to 15.00.