“Stiff shudderings shook the heav'nly thrones! France, Spain, and Italy
In terror view'd the bands of Albion, and the ancient Guardians,
Fainting upon the elements, smitten with their own plagues!”
William Blake: America: The Prophecy (1793)
“Shadows of men in fleeting bands upon the winds
Divide the heavens of Europe;
Till Albion's Angel, smitten with his own plagues, fled with his bands.
The cloud bears hard on Albion's shore,
Fill'd with immortal Demons of futurity”
William Blake: Europe: The Prophecy (1794)
This inter-disciplinary course covers wide variety of topics dealing with theatrical, philosophical and political issues, as well as issues in the field of cognitive studies (for example, the potential impact of cognitive science on performance theory; general cognition for theatre audience, social cognition in spectating and cultural cognition in history). We are particularly interested in exploring some of the relations
between political discourse and political cognition, as well as in analyzing political discourse genres, their structure and their performative dynamics. The very concept of Europe contains the idea of the Other as its constitutive element. The motto of this year's is taken from two umbiguously «prophetic» texts of William Blake, «America: A Prophecy» and «Europe: A Prophecy». Blake uses the “principle of rhetorical indeterminacy”, forcing the contemporary reader into an active role of having to interpret the complementarity of these two poems beyond the canonized cultural, historical and political interpretative (and valuing) contexts of Blake’s time, and even beyond the interpretative logic inscribed into and read out of Blake’s poetic “visionary anarchism” and rebellion against the abuse of class power.
Postmodern ethics once again allows that “Other” as the next door neighbor, to enter into the very heart of the moral self to come back from the desert of “calculated interests” where the Other was living in exile. The Other is defined as the “crucial character” in the process through which the moral self has to go to find itself. But is it still possible – in view of the increasingly aggravating refugee crisis – to share Zygmont Bauman’s optimism from the early 90s? Is it still possible to see in the postmodern the opportunity to move out of the blind alleys into which the radical ambitions of modernity led the moral self?
*course offer ECTS points (Minimum 2 ECTS – more ECTS for PhD students who present their papers – depending on decission of Doctoral Programs at their Faculties