Reintroducing Politics: Transnational Intervention on the Europe
The 1st of March, we had the pleasure to welcome two key figures of contemporary political philosophy: Etienne Balibar and Hauke Brunkhorst. Both men have offered their perspectives on how politics within and beyond the nation-state can and should intervene in processes that transcend traditional borders.
13:00 - 13:45 Keynote Etienne Balibar
13:45 - 14:15 Q&A
14:15 - 14:45 Break with coffee and tea
14:45 - 15:30 Keynote Hauke Brunkhorst
15:30 - 16:00 Q&A
16:00 - 17:00 Social Drinks
Etienne Balibar is a French political philosopher, who became well-known as a follower of Louis Althusser. Balibar is also one of the leading exponents of philosophy in France and the author of Spinoza and Politics, The Philosophy of Marx and co-author of Race, Nation and Class (with Immanuel Wallerstein)
How to regulate absolute capitalism? And the possible function of Europe
In the 19th and 20th century, despite its libertarian and internationalist tendencies, “socialism” was conceived in terms of planning and state regulation, either democratic or dictatorial, in a national framework. In the 21st century, with the advent of global finance as the dominant form of capitalism, it has to be imagined afresh in terms of transnational regulations, which concern in particular five key areas: banking and tax regimes, arms controls, environment and climate change, monopolies of information, and human migrations. They must limit the sovereignty of states and impose on them juridical and political constraints, with the support of populations or communities of citizens at different levels. It is in this perspective that a renovation of the European federal project, today in a deep crisis which affects both its legitimacy and its goals, could be undertaken.
Keynote Etienne Balibar
Hauke Brunkhorst is Professor of Sociology and Head of the Institute of Sociology at the University of Flensburg, Germany. Previously, he was the Theodor Heuss Professor at the New School for Social Research in New York, USA. A political sociologist, he has authored many books, including Adorno and Critical Theory and Solidarity: From Civic Friendship to a Global Legal Community.
From Crisis to Politics - Conditions of Re-Democratizing Market-Conform Post-democracy
A year before the threat of "the worst financial crisis in global history" (Ben Bernanke) became real, his predecessor at the presidency of the Federal Reserve, Alan Greenspan told the Zürcher Tages-Anzeiger that political decisions "have been largely replaced by market forces". In 2008, September 15, when Lehman Brothers collapsed, Greenspan’s belief in the irrelevance of political action together the then prevailing theses of evolutionary economy and evolutionary sociology, that everything changes but we cannot change it, was falsified by Bernanke, and a couple of American and British leaders who then broadly shared Greenspan’s belief in market forces. In a couple of days they made far-reaching political decisions that changed evolution and blocked the worst effects of the crisis. The paper examines the possibilities of politically intended change and progress in a situation of European and global society that is strongly depending on economic forces, power structures, cultural hegemonies and functional imperatives which indeed are hard to control.
Keynote Hauke Brunkhorst