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Globale Gewaltkontinuitäten und transformative Gerechtigkeit (Laura Kotzur)

Knowledge Politics (Mariam Salehi)

On the codification of land in transnational law: from the colonial encounter to current conflicts over land use (Hannah Franzki & Angela María Sánchez Alfonso)

Radical Politics and (Non)violent Resistance (Jannis Grimm)

The scale, pace and intensity of global crises – from climate change, to late capitalism, to the breakdown of the multipolar world order – demand radical departures from conventional modes of doing politics. Hence it is no surprise that these multiple crises have become the fuel for radical politics and popular resistance. Across the globe, radical collectives, revolutionary movements and innovative forms of activism have emerged that attempt to challenge and change the status quo through (non)violent resistance. These mobilization processes, epitomized in the resurgence of traditional civil disobedience tactics and the emergence of a new transnational repertoire of protest, have given rise to a range of empirical, ontological and epistemological questions related to the conceptualization of “violence” and “the radical.” Who defines what radical politics actually is and entails, and how? Does radicalization necessarily involve a resort to violence or more confrontational means of doing politics? And if so, is it always wrong, or sometimes even a morally grounded imperative? Who determines what violent protest is? And what types of violence can be considered (in)effective or (il)legitimate? This course aims to critically address these questions and to explore their epistemic effects on the ways we conceive of radical politics as well as their material impact on the character of contemporary protest and contentious politics.

Conflict Arenas in the Middle East and North Africa (Jannis Grimm)

The mass uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa in 2010/2011 are frequently described as a crucial instant of history live unfolding. These mobilization processes left a deep imprint, not only on Middle Eastern and North African societies, but also on social movement studies as a discipline. As such, they provide a prolific object of study for those who aim to understand the emergence, endurance, impacts, internal dynamics and cultural meanings of protest politics and social movements. Against this backdrop, this course aims to introduce students to the key debates in the social movement studies by exploring a variety conflict arenas in the Middle East and North Africa – including the main stages of the so-called "Arab Spring" and more recent protest sites in Algerian, Iraq, Lebanon and Sudan – and their relation to processes of social mobilization. It furthermore aims to familiarize the participants with a variety of methods to study the dynamics of protest events as well as processes of social mobilization. Accordingly, this course is both an introduction to social movement theory (including structuralist approaches, cultural perspectives, as well as relational and micro-interactionist approaches) and a practicum on research designs.

Conflict Arenas: Global Justice (Mariam Salehi)

Konfliktarenen: Transnationale Unternehmen im Internationalen Recht (Hannah Franzki)

Knowledge Politics in Peace and Conflict (Mariam Salehi)

NGO or think tank reports, numbers and indicators, academic analysis, media reporting, policy guidance, truth/inquiry commissions – questions of knowledge production and transfer, as well as the politics thereof, are currently gaining plenty of attention in peace and conflict studies. In this course, we will look into these current debates and cover questions such as who is producing what kind of knowledge, how, and with what (political) purpose? Whose knowledge is seen as valid and why? And with what consequences? We will look at different knowledge products, different actors who produce and transfer knowledge, and at their epistemic practices. Therefore, the course will combine (critical) academic perspectives with perspectives from policy/practice

Kritiken der Gewalt - interdisziplinäre Perspektiven auf einen Grundbegriff der Friedens- und Konfliktforschung (Hannah Franzki)

Die internationale Friedens- und Konfliktforschung hat sich in den letzten dreißig Jahren auf die Untersuchung gewaltvoll ausgetragener Konflikte und möglicher (gewaltfreier) Regelungsmöglichkeiten konzentriert. Gewalt, so scheint man sich einig, ist nicht erwünscht. Was aber ist Gewalt? Anhand welcher Kriterien wird entschieden, ob eine Handlung oder einer Situation gewaltvoll ist oder nicht? Wessen Erfahrungen gehen in anerkannte Definitionen von Gewalt ein, wessen nicht? Und: wessen Gewalterfahrung berührt uns, motiviert uns zum Handeln und welche lässt uns kalt? Die Hauptaufgabe von Kritik – so formuliert es Judith Butler in Anschluss an Michel Foucault – bestehe nicht darin zu bewerten, ob ihr Gegenstand (hier: die Gewalt) gut oder schlecht sei. Vielmehr sei es das Ziel von Kritik „das System der Bewertung selbst heraus[zu]arbeiten“ (Butler 2002, S. 252). In einer kritischen Auseinandersetzung mit dem Begriff der Gewalt geht es also nicht lediglich darum, Gewalt zu verurteilen, sondern uns zu fragen, welche Gewaltverständnisse einer Verurteilung von Gewalt vorausgehen, unsere Entrüstung prägen. In diesem Sinne wollen wir uns gemeinsam die wissenschaftliche Debatte um den umkämpften Begriff der Gewalt erschließen.