Thirty years after the end of the Cold War, this conference looks both backwards and forwards to explore the legacies of 1989. Francis Fukuyama famously claimed that this moment marked the “End of History”: an end to ideological struggle which would open the way for the inexorable spread of liberal democracy across the globe. How do we understand 1989 and its legacies today?
Arguably, the current conjuncture remains marked by the revolutions of ‘89 and their consequences: the global spread of neoliberal capitalism; the numerous devastating wars that have followed the end of the Cold War; growing inequality within states and across the globe; the mass movement of people; the rise of various brands of right-wing populism and fascism across the globe; and much more besides. The cultural and political impasse that once wore the name of postmodernism is today commonly read as a confluence of catastrophes: environmental, political, social, and economic. This apocalyptic malaise is all too often accompanied by a sense that “there is no alternative”. The idea that the future is there to be made, that it could be better than the present, is likewise lacking. Simultaneously, this political impasse is being seized upon by a resurgent far-right.
This interdisciplinary conference invites papers which reflect on the multiple impacts and legacies of ’89: cultural, political, historical and philosophical. Where are where we are now; where we are heading; and where we should be heading? How are philosophers, historians, analysts, activists and artists responding to these challenges? How
ought they to respond?
• Politics after “The End of History”
• Philosophy after “The End of History”?
• Political and historical agency
• Political subjectivity
• Past, Present and Future: the question of historical temporalities• History after “The End of History”
• The revolutions of 1989 and their legacies
• Global perspectives on 1989
• The rise of the far-right after the end of the Cold War
• What has philosophy to say to fascism and how should it say it?
• Culture after “The End of History”
• Aesthetics after “The End of History”
• Does Populism threaten democracy? Does it threaten capitalism?• The politics of austerity
• Ethics after Stalin
• The aestheticisation of politics
• Radical and reactionary cultural interventions
We anticipate that these and related issues will be of interest to people working in, among other areas, cultural studies, philosophy, political theory, history of ideas, art, design, politics, sociology, media studies, social geography and history.
Abstracts of no more than 300 words should be emailed by 31 January 2019 at the latest, to Bob Brecher: R.Brecher@brighton.ac.uk
The conference fee is £120 / £40 (unwaged/student). This includes refreshments, lunch on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and a dinner on the Thursday evening.
Please note: the conference fee does not include accommodation and, unfortunately, we are unable to offer travel grants or other forms of financial assistance (except for a small number of fee waivers – see below). A limited amount of reasonably priced student halls of residence accommodation is available on a first come first served basis.
There is a small number of fee waivers available for under-represented colleagues, especially those outside the Anglosphere.
Please indicate if you wish to be considered for a reduced rate when sending your abstract.
Please e-mail any general enquiries to the CAPPE Administrator, Ian Sinclair <firstname.lastname@example.org>