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Press releases

On the Global Construction of Locality
14.- 15.11.2003
10:00 - 20:00
Free admission
Conference language: English

In India, as in other postcolonial countries, the issue of cultural identity is closely tied up with the discussion of identity as a nation-state. Taking the categories of “Space” and “Place” and embedding them within current theories of globalization, the conference “Passages: On the Global Construction of Locality” attempts to undermine the predominant notion of a unity of territoriality, identity and culture. Debate will focus on the spatial organization of social relationships, which historically has its unambiguous solution in the territorial nation-state. In the words of Henry Lefebvre, “The state is ruler over space.”

But what is the situation in times of “global flows and global cultures”? The conference will problematize contemporary discourses on globalization, post-colonialism and transnationalism which define the global as an “unbounded space of flows”. Within this construct, locality, the significance of places, spaces, local cultures and identities seem to be nothing but variable quantities dependent on context. The conference is dedicated to the significance of such local places and spaces. It examines identity politics and the manifold practices by which ethnic, gender- and class-specific differentiations and power figurations are created and/or destroyed in space. Anthropologists and geographers, cultural scholars, artists, sociologists and historians will reflect on the conditions of constructing “locality” in times of globalization.


Friday 14.11.
10h – 13h30
Space, Place, Power I:

Doreen Massey: On not Exonerating the Local
Purnima Mankekar: Communities of Protest: Gender and the Reconfiguration of South Asia after 9/11
Martina Löw: The social Construction of Space and Gender
Moderation: Helmuth Berking

15h – 17h30
Space, Place, Power II:

Nina Glick-Schiller: Locating the City Within Migrant Simultaneity
Werner Schiffauer: Structures of Diasporic Imagination
Moderation: Shalini Randeria

Philippe Rekacewicz: Cartography and Politics: an open Door to Manipulation
Moderation: N.N.
Event by House of World Cultures in cooperation with Le Monde diplomatique

Saturday 15.11.
10h – 13h30r
Global Flows, Local Cultures I

John Urry: Global Complexities
Dipankar Gupta: Creating Space out of No-Space: Normative Theory and the Challenges Before Modernity
Helmuth Berking: Placeless Power and the Power of Places
Moderation: Martina Löw


Helmuth B. Berking, Professor of Sociology, University Darmstadt
Nina Glick-Schiller, Professor of Anthropology, University of New Hampshire; Max Plack Institute of Ethnology, Halle
Dipankar Gupta, Professor of Sociology, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University
Martina Löw, Professor of Sociology, University Darmstadt
Purnima Mankekar, Professor of Anthropology, University Stanford
Doreen Massey, Professor of Geography, Open University of United Kingdom
Shalini Randeria, Professor of Social Anthropology, University Zürich
Werner Schiffauer, Professor of Cultural and Social Anthropology, Europe-University Viadrina
John Urry, Professor of Sociology, Lancaster University

More Information:
Petra Stegmann
for the
House of World Cultures
John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10
10557 Berlin
fon: 0049 - 30 - 397 87 291
fax: 0049 - 30 - 397 87 159