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Anxiety Culture Project

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Magdalena Wetzel

on 15 June 2017

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Transcript of Anxiety Culture Project

The Discursive (De)Construction of Anxiety Culture:
Events
On Ways of Handling with Social Threats and Dangers in Public Debates and Education Programms, Activities 2016:
A new ‚Get-Into-Project‘ was found:
Anxiety Culture and how to react against it – Compact Summary
Our age has become an age of crisis, and one key feature of modern society is the constant discussion of threats and dangers to social life and how they may be overcome.

For many people, today’s anxiety culture – mainly constructed by public discourses – is linked to a deeply perceived uncertainty that meets with Ulrich Beck’s idea of a risk society.

In reaction to anxiety culture, we should try to improve the role public education has to play in its task of promoting learning processes that allow the public to appropriately respond to threats and dangers, perceived or real.
Anxiety Culture and how to react against it – Social Problem Fields
The main social problem fields of today seem to affect us all in a global dimension. We may think of global warming and its consequences, nutritional behavior, health hazards, migration and national isolationism, unemployment or the ensuring of pension schemes. More directly felt threats are emanating from social phenomena like terrorism or racism. They are often linked to single persons, for example in cases of corruption or bullying. It is particularly frightening that the mainstream experience made in such outbursts exceeding social norms is close to be described as a new form of solidarity among those who consider themselves concerned and that it justifies in greater parts of our societies a new thinking and acting on the grounds of using violence.
What is it all about?
Anxiety Culture

Our age has become an age of crisis, and one key feature of modern society is the constant discussion of threats and dangers to social life and how they may be overcome. The consequence of this, whether in the mass media or in private life, is to produce an anxiety culture, in which our discussions are profoundly marked by concerns and fears.
 
For many people, today’s anxiety culture is linked to a deeply perceived uncertainty that meets with Ulrich Beck’s idea of a risk society. Those people, guided by the perception of unstable and insufficient living conditions, feel easily attracted by uncommon and often radical social initiatives arising with a primary consciousness of living in a crisis.
Colleagues from Teachers College, NY, at Kiel (2015/16):
Timothy Ignaffo, PhD Cand. (10 months)
Dr. Michael Schapira (5 months)
Dr. John Allegrante (10 days, Special Guest of Kiel University for Kiel Week)

Anxiety Culture and how to react against it
Within our modern values system, we have gotten used to a rather ego-centric way of facing threats and dangers in our life. At this point, it should be asked for the role public education has to play. There are indeed many reasons to question the efficiency and success of educational institutions in their task to react to social and economic problems that permanently lead to anxious debates about what public discourses tell us to be the prevailing threats of the moment.
 
One of the main challenges of anxiety culture therefore is to promote learning processes that allow the public to appropriately respond to threats and dangers, perceived or real. Defining educational responsibility in the face of discursive practices in times of social crisis is an intellectual stimulus on moral grounds, born out of shared research interests from scholars who are at the same time part of society.
Come-In-Touch- Conference at Kiel University
June, 8th -10th 2015

A Multidisciplinary Research Project Concerning Social Threats and Public Education
The project was initiated by ZeBiG (Institute of Empirical Research in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities) and the IPN (Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education) based on the intention of internationalization:
In June 2015, ZeBiG and the IPN hosted a ‘Come-in-Touch-Conference‘ at Kiel University, and welcomed six academic research associates of the Teachers College, Columbia University, New York. The aim of this conference was to introduce the specific fields of research of both nations and figure out similarities and differences of research interests.

Research Colloquium Winter Semester 2016/17
Research Colloquium Summer Semester 2017
Books to read...
Bauman, Z. (2000): Liquid Modernity. London: Polity Press.
Beck, U. (2008): World at Risk. Hoboken (New Jersey): John Wiley & Sons.
Dunlap, R. / Brulle, R. (2015): Climate Change and Society: Sociological Perspectives. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Foucault, M. (2010): The Birth of Biopolitics: Lectures at the Collège de France, 1978—1979. New York: Picador.
Koopmans, R. / Lancee, B. (2014): Social Cohesion and Immigration in Europe and North America: Mechanisms, Conditions, and Causality, London: Routledge.
Mason, P. (2016): PostCapitalism: A Guide to our Future, London: Lane.
Roitman, J. (2013): Anti-Crisis. Durham: Duke University Press.
Schönwälder, K. [et a.] (2016): Diversity and Contact: Immigration and Social Interaction in German Cities, London: Palgrave Macmillan.

… and many more
Anxiety Culture and its Discursive (De)Construction: Collaborating Colleagues in Germany...
Prof. Dr. Julia Reuter
Erziehungs- und Kultursoziologie, Universität Köln
Kontaktperson: Dr. Monica van der Haagen-Wulff
Prof. Dr. Paul Mecheril
Professor für Migration und Bildung am Institut für Pädagogik der Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg und Direktor des dortigen Center for Migration, Education and Cultural Studies
Prof. Dr. Stephan Habscheid, Germanistik, Angewandte Sprachwissenschaft, Universität Siegen
Prof. Dr. Irene Neverla
Principal Investigator im Exzellenzcluster ‚Integrated Climate System Analysis and Prediction‘ (CliSAP) der Universität Hamburg
Kontakperson: Dr. Imke Hoppe
First Research Inputs / External Contributions:
Recent Contributions regarding Romance Studies:
International conference
16th – 18th of July 2017
The perception of social threats and crisis in public life and education
Gut Siggen (Ostholstein, near Lübeck, Germany)
Contact
Prof. Dr. Ulrich Hoinkes
Web: hoinkes-research.net Email: hoinkes@zebig.uni-kiel.de
Tel: +49 163 7475777
Come and Join Us ! Call for participation:
Full transcript