’Common sense’ and the end of negotiations? Exploring contemporary Europe through and beyond Ideology“
(Panel RG Europa)
Biennal Congress of the German Anthropological Association (DGSKA) Konstanz (29.9.-2.10.2019).
This workshop takes up Gramsci’s notion of “common sense” as the entry point to explore differences and intersections of ideologies in contemporary Europe. Of particular interest for the workshop is the way different ideologies (which in other ways seem conflicted, such as e.g. radical right and social democracy) can imply similar views on certain issues by representing those as “common sense” beyond the need for negotiations. Claims such as e.g. the imminent threat posed by “political Islam”, (forced) migrants “preying” on social/ health benefits or certain criteria for being “deserving” of aid (as a person, a group, a state etc.), often are presented as taken for granted “common sense” arguments for restrictive migration policies and social welfare reforms. The idea of the workshop is thus to go beyond manifest ideological-political negotiations and battles and explore which (implicit) realm of non-negotiability they rest upon. Furthermore, the workshop aims at exploring when and to what extent“ common sense” arguments secure ideological stability and when do they spark new rounds of political and every-day negotiations and battles. The open character of Gramsci’s „common sense“ (“a chaotic aggregate of disparate conceptions, and one can find there anything that one likes”, Gramsci 1971: 422) as well as its productive tension with the notion of ideology (common sense as “spontaneous philosophy of the multitude (...) which has to be made ideologically coherent”, Gramsci 1971: 421), opens up fruitful avenues for discussing transformations, intersections and actual implementations of contemporary ideologies. The workshop thus invites ethnographic-theoretical contributions by colleagues across different subfields (economic anthropology, anthropology of migration, political anthropology, anthropology of religion, legal anthropology etc.) working on different dimensions of current socio-economic and political transformations in Europe to use the notion of “common sense” for reflecting on their completed/on-going research.
Convenor: Jelena Tosic (St.Gallen/Vienna)
Discussant: Andreas Streinzer (Frankfurt)
Please, send your Abstract of max. 1.200 characters (incl. spaces) and a short version of max. 300 characters (incl. spaces) to Jelena Tošić (email@example.com)
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