Oct 23–25, 2008

The Colonial Modern

International Conference

This conference focuses on the relationship between the aesthetic regime of modernity and the colonial project. It proceeds from the hypothesis that the aesthetics of modernity have not developed outside the centres of power, but are inextricably tied to social power relations. And since the dawn of colonial rule, these have formed largely vis-à-vis the colonised: the so-called ‘Other’. Proceeding from traces of modernism and post-modernist architecture, as developed in North Africa under colonial conditions, the question arises as to which locations, by which actors, and in which forms modernity and modernism have been negotiated, appropriated and re-interpreted up to the present. These are not issues of mere historical interest. What conclusions can be drawn from them for dealing with contemporary cultural, scientific and political problems?