6th Annual Graduate Conference

The Power of/in Academia: Critical Interventions in Knowledge Production and Society

13-14 November 2015

Knowledge production and social transformation are closely intertwined. Academic scholarship plays a crucial role in analyzing and critiquing social, economic, ecological, and political developments, while simultaneously, however, being inextricably linked to its social context and its inherent relations of power and domination. Scrutinizing the link between social critique and scholarship also entails the critical examination of the tools applied in analyzing social phenomena, which in turn lay the basis for academic social critique. Scientific methods of gaining knowledge not only co-constitute and shape the object of research, but also the kind of knowledge that is produced. The ontological and epistemic structure of knowledge production is, therefore, never given, but shaped by power relations.
We look forward to facilitating a dialogue with you on these topics, and especially the following questions: in what forms and on which normative basis can academia criticize society and can society criticize academia? How can critical perspectives on the role of academia in social processes be facilitated? What role does the methodological and ethical reflection of one’s procedures and practices play? Are research ethics the appropriate tool to challenge historically anchored and normalized relations of power and domination?
Challenging the format of the academic conference and engaging with non-normative forms of knowledge dissemination and critique is one of the aims of our conference. Apart from the discussion in the panels, we therefore invite you to reflect on and discuss these topics in the formats of the Knowledge Café and of the Open Space. We consider these two moments a constitutive part of our conference and encourage you to debate questions of common concern in an open and non-hierarchical way. On Friday evening, Prof. Dr. Dieter Mersch (ZHdK Zürich) will deliver the first keynote speech on “Aesthetic Criticism. On the Wisdom of Art”. On Saturday morning, we will continue reflecting on the possibility of performative forms of knowledge production and critique together with the team of Theater der Versammlung/Theatre of Assemblage. After a second round of panels, on Saturday evening, Prof. Yvonna S. Lincoln (Texas A&M University) will deliver the second keynote speech on “Threat Levels: Qualitative Research Ethics, Power and Neoliberalism’s Context”. Afterwards, we warmly invite you to celebrate together with us with a dinner and a party.
For our young and interdisciplinary organizing team, working together in preparing this conference has been an enriching and constructive experience. We wish for the conference to become an occasion for reflection and inspiration for all participants and to hopefully be the starting point of a longer and fruitful exchange with you. We wish you a great conference and a nice time in Frankfurt!
The organizing team would like to thank all discussants and colleagues at the Cluster and its partner institutions, who made this conference possible through their continuing support. We especially thank the Goethe Graduate Academy (GRADE), the GraduiertenCenter Sozialwissenschaften (GRASOC) and the Cornelia Geothe Center for Women's and Gender Studies (CGC) for their generous support of the conference! Many thanks!

The organizing team


Participation is free of charge, but previous registration is required. Please register until Wednesday, 11 November 2015, by writing an e-mail to Diese E-Mail-Adresse ist vor Spambots geschützt! Zur Anzeige muss JavaScript eingeschaltet sein!

Presented by:
Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders"

Programme and further information (pdf): click here...



Friday, 13 November 2015

8:30-9:00, Registration
Normative Orders building Lobby

09:00-09:45 Welcome
Normative Orders building EG.01

Welcome Adress
Rebecca Caroline Schmidt (Managing Director of the Cluster of Excellence “The Formation of Normative Orders”)
Prof. Dr. Nicole Deitelhoff (Coordinator of the International Graduate Program, Cluster of Excellence “The Formation of Normative Orders”)
Theater der Versammlung/Theatre of Assemblage: „One of Them …“ Guide for an Exclusion in Style
Actions: Carolin Bebek, Simon Makhali, Tom Schröpfer
Artistic Direction: Jörg Holkenbrink

9:45-11:15 Knowledge Café
Normative Orders building EG.01

11:15-11:30 Coffee Break
Normative Orders building Lobby

11:30-13:00 Panels

University as space of power
Normative Orders building 5.01
Katarina Froebus: The Academic Production of Critique – University as a Place for Critique?
Zubair Ahmad and Luis Manuel Hernandez Aguilar: Secular Power and Disciplinary Effects: Reflections on the Institutionalization of “Islamic” Theology at German Universities
Ilka Sommer: The Violence of the Collective (Non-)Recognition of Foreign Qualifications in Germany and the Impossibility of Thinking Knowledge (Production) as Being of Equal Value
Anne Reiff, Janina Hirth, Miranda Loli and Kristina Weil: Cluster of Excellence Goes Congo

Artistic Research/Künstlerisches Forschen
(Panel with Presentations in German)
Normative Orders building 5.02
Sebastian Mühl: What Kind of Research, what Kind of Knowledge? Artistic Research!
Philipp Schulte and Falk Rößler: Against Functionalization. Under Which Conditions can Artistic Research Become an Aesthetic Critique of the Academic Production of Knowledge?

13:00-14:00 Lunch Break

14:00-15:30 Panels

Relations between Society and Academia
Normative Orders building 5.01
Lisa Katharina Bogerts: What are you Looking at? How Scholars use Visuals but Have no Clue About it
Matthias C. Kettemann: The Power and Legitimacy of Academia in Internet Governance Processes
Felicitas Heßelmann: Knowledge and Secrets: Legitimizing Scientific Sanctions for Cases of Misconduct
Sebastian Levi: Belief Selection in International Politics – A Cross-Country Analysis of Causal Beliefs on the Financial Crisis 2007-2009

Representations of Critique/Darstellungen von Kritik
(Panel with Presentations in German)
Normative Orders building 5.02
Katharina Herrmann: On the Problem of Contradicting - A Subject Critical Analysis of Critical Formation of Theory
Tobias Albrecht: ”…that the Essay as a Literary Form has a Natural Affinity to the Exercises I Have in Mind“ – On Some ‘Methodological‘ Similarities between Arendt and Adorno
Magdalena Scherl: From Theory to Parody – Subversive Practices of Writing
Janoš Klocke: Spaces without Borders. Places of Criticism Following Foucault and Adorno

15:30-16:00 Coffee Break
Normative Orders building 5th Floor

16:00-17:30 Panels

Subjectivity and Resistance
Normative Orders building 5.01
Agnes Wankmüller: Can a Particular Ethical Practice, Such as Self-Governing According to Foucault, Inform and Spark Social Protest and Critical Research?
Mattia Mossali: Fighting against Gender Categorization: the Complexity of Subjectivity.
Sophie Künstler: “We are not Poor” – Power Effects of Knowledge Production and (Im-)Possibilities for Critique Within the Research about the Poor

Models of Critical Theory/Modelle Kritischer Theorie
(Panel with Presentations in German)
Normative Orders building 5.02
Annika Weinert: Knowledge-Slash-Power’. The Nexus between Knowledge and Power in Early ANT
Christoph Haker: The Practice of Paradoxization in Critical Theory
Martin Meng: Two Frankfurt Schools – Approaches on Synthesizing
Ricardo Pagliuso Regatieri: Civilization: Singular or Plural?

17:30-18:00 Break
Normative Orders building Lobby

18:00-19:30 Keynote
by Prof. Dr. Dieter Mersch: “Aesthetic Criticism. On the Wisdom of Art.”
Normative Orders building EG.01

19:30-22:00 Reception
Normative Orders building Lobby

Saturday, 14 November 2015

09:30-11:00 Panels

Ethical Challenges in Qualitative Research, Fieldwork and Method(ologies) I
Normative Orders building 5.01
Federico Trentanove and Chiara Santoro: Going through Vulnerability as an Ethic Choice: to Keep the “Scientific” Distance Interchanging the Research Protagonist
Sinah Theres Kloß: Experiencing Danger during Fieldwork: Self-Defense, Power Relations, and Ethical Challenges of the (Gendered) Ethnographer
Sebastian Garbe: “The Proof of the Pudding is in the Eating” – Knowledge Production as Political Praxis in the Context of Transnational Solidarity
Nina Schneider: Pluralizing History: Resistance to Epistemic Violence in the Americas

Critical Epistemologies
Normative Orders building 5.02
Florian Muhle and Tobias Conradi: Perspectives of Critique
Lokeshwari Dasgupta: Dance in the World of Academia
Dror Pimentel: Beuys as Philosopher: The Aporia of Fat

11:00-11:15 Coffee Break
Normative Orders building 5th Floor

11:15-12:45 C COPY A, ENCRYPTED
Normative Orders building EG.01

Click-Performance by Theater der Versammlung/Theatre of Assemblage
Actions: Carolin Bebek, Anna Buschart-Heintz, Simon Makhali, Clara Schließler, Tom Schröpfer
Dramatic Composition: Anna Seitz
Artistic Direction: Jörg Holkenbrink

12:45-13:30 Lunch Break
Normative Orders building Lobby

13:30-15:00 Panels

Ethical Challenges in Qualitative Research, Fieldwork and Method(ologies) II
Normative Orders building 5.01
Matti Traußneck: Critical Science - Reflections on Ideology, Science and the Scientists in the Context of Racism Studies
Gwendolyn Gilliéron and Sevda Can Güneş: Reciprocal Process of Attribution in the Research Practice
Kira Nierobisch: Forgotten Questions? Ethics and Responsibility in Narration-Analytical Procedures of Biography Research
Magnus Frank: The Pedagogy of the Others – Self-critical Questions on a Migration-societal Ethnography  

Critical Guided Tour of the Campus
Florian Zabransky
Meeting point: Registration Desk, Normative Orders building Ground Floor

15:00-15:30 Coffee Break
Normative Orders building 5th Floor

15:30-17:00 Open Space
Normative Orders building EG.01

17:00-17:15 Break
Normative Orders building Lobby

17:15-18:45 Keynote
by Prof. Dr. Yvonna S. Lincoln: “Threat Levels: Qualitative Research Ethics, Power and Neoliberalism's Context”
Normative Orders building EG.01

19:00-20:00 Dinner
Normative Orders building Lobby

20:00-2:30 Party
Normative Orders building 5th Floor


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