YUFE Academy

The YUFE Academy is a sequence of online lectures travelling along the YUFE campi on “European Identity”, YUFE’s first focus area, which will give interested students, staff and citizens a “feel” of YUFE. All twenty online lectures together cultivate into a programme one could follow entirely or only some parts of. All these little building blocks together make the YUFE Academy, a beneficial gathering and learning experience for YUFE students, staff and citizens.

DateLectureHosted byRegistration by
3 November 2020, 10:00 – 11:30 CETA community in progress? The dynamics of European identification in times of global crisesUniversidad Carlos III de Madrid27 October 2020
4 November 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CETHate speech and hate crime in the EU space: counter-actions and counter speechUniversity of Cyprus27 October 2020
5 November 2020, 10:00 – 11:30 CETA community in progress? The dynamics of European identification in times of global crisesUniversidad Carlos III de Madrid27 October 2020
6 November 2020, 10:00 – 11:30 CETThe Mies Van Der Rohe Architectural Awards, Best in class in EuropeUniversity of Cyprus27 October 2020
10 November 2020, 11:00 – 12:30 CETThe European Dimension in EducationUniversity of Rijeka30 October 2020
11 November 2020, 16:30 – 17:30 CETFrom Dissonant Heritage to Dark Tourism in Southeastern EuropeUniversity of Rijeka30 October 2020
12 November 2020, 11:00 – 12:30 CETSustainable direction for the future of tourismUniversity of Eastern Finland30 October 2020
13 November 2020, 12:00 – 13:30 CETFlipped UEFUniversity of Eastern Finland30 October 2020
17 November 2020, 18:00 – 20:00 CETDecentering Europe – a conversation with Dr Jens AdamUniversity of Bremen6 November 2020
18 November 2020, 11:00 – 13:00 CETSustainable and Resilient Development in Europe after the Covid PandemicsTor Vergata University of Rome6 November 2020
18 November 2020, 18:00 – 20:00 CETIs my B2 your B2? Or what it means to be at a CEFR levelUniversity of Bremen6 November 2020
20 November 2020, 11:00 – 13:00 CETA More Perfect Union? On the Economics of European IdentityTor Vergata University of Rome6 November 2020
24 November 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CETImmigration, Brexit and COVID-19: the future of multicultural BritainUniversity of Essex13 November 2020
25 November 2020, 10:00 – 11:30 CETPromoting European Union Values in International RelationsNicolaus Copernicus University13 November 2020
26 November 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CETParliamentary Democracy in EuropeNicolaus Copernicus University13 November 2020
27 November 2020, 17:00 – 19:00 CETLed By Donkeys: Englishness, Nostalgia, and CrisisUniversity of Essex13 November 2020
30 November 2020, 15:30 – 17:00 CETLaw in Motion: A Legal Historical Journey across EuropeMaastricht University20 November 2020
1 December 2020, 11:00 – 12:30 CETThe idea of Europe – and its ConsequencesMaastricht University20 November 2020
3 December 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CETIdentities & Memory politics in Europe – the links between the European project and colonialismUniversity of Antwerp20 November 2020
4 December 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CETColonialism and Europe: the heritage of EnlightenmentUniversity of Antwerp20 November 2020

A community in progress? The dynamics of European identification in times of global crises

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
Date and Time: 3 November 2020, 10:00 – 11:30 CET / 5 November 2020, 10:00 – 11:30 CET
Registration Deadline: 27 October 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Professor Aleksandra Sojka
Description: Since the beginning of the multiple crises which have challenged the European Union (EU) in the last decade, public and academic attention to the political effects of social identities has intensified. Though the question of the identification processes underlying European integration is by no means new, as the various economic and political challenges to the Union unfolded, the role played by national and European loyalties has become central to the understanding of current EU politics. In most European countries, Eurosceptic parties managed to trigger a public debate on identity-related issues, and, by capitalizing on nationalist sentiments, brought about developments which are causing grave problems for the future of the continent. As a consequence, there is an urgent need to re-visit assumptions on the relationship between European integration and processes of political identification. The aim of this session is to examine the question of European identity from different theoretical and empirical standpoints and critically examine the role played by identities in current EU politics. We will discuss the effects of diversity and mobility on processes of identification and identity politics in a globalized era. The discussions in the session will provide an opportunity for a reflection on the theoretical implications of recent crises for the emergence of a common European identification and to re-evaluate its theories from an interdisciplinary point of view.

3 / 5 November 2020

Hate speech and hate crime in the EU space: counter-actions and counter speech

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Cyprus
Date and Time: 4 November 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 27 October 2020
Available seats: 300
Lecturer: Professor Fabienne Baider
Description: Counter narratives emphasize the need to de-construct and weaken violent narratives. Alternative narratives stress the importance of enlightening different accounts and emphasize positive alternatives that are not just the negative image of the narratives they seek to counter and do not reinforce or accredit them by focusing on them. A need of effective counter narratives is necessary not only for those spreading hate, but especially for the silent audience, the millions of readers who need to be informed of the bias.
Our aim with this workshop is to explain what are the different types of counter or alternative narratives, to discuss the effectiveness of counter- and alternative narratives based on current research and to design new counter- and alternative narratives for the most relevant triggers, and assess their impact. Counter and alternative narratives will be approached following the methodology inferred by previous research (Braddock 2016, Halverson 2010, Shelley 2004) and the worshop will be using specific examples.
This workshop is based on the training offered by EU social justice program IMsyPP, UCY team coordinated by Fabienne Baider.

4 November 2020

The Mies Van Der Rohe Architectural Awards, Best in class in Europe

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Cyprus
Date and Time: 6 November 2020, 10:00 – 11:30 CET
Registration Deadline: 27 October 2020
Available seats:
Lecturer: Associate Professor Andreas Savvides & Associate Professor Nadia Charalambous
Description: The presentation aims to present to the audience a European integration proposal pertaining to the field of architecture that since its inception almost twenty years has become a European milestone in recognizing architectural excellence common to Europe.

According to the foundation, the idea for a Prize that would recognize and commend excellence in European architecture was proposed to the European Parliament by MP Xavier Rubert de Ventós. On April 28 1987 —just under a year after the reconstruction of the Pavilion was completed— an agreement was signed between European Commissioner Carlo Ripa di Meana and Barcelona Mayor Pasqual Maragall to launch the Mies van der Rohe Award of the European Communities, with the first biennial edition being held in 1988 as the Mies van der Rohe Award for European Architecture.

In 2000 the Fundació Mies van der Rohe submitted the model of the Mies van der Rohe Award —with the addition of the Emerging Architect Special Mention that recognizes the work of young professionals starting out on their careers— in response to the call for proposals by the European Commission for the ‘European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture’. Upon acceptance of the Fundació’s proposal, in 2001, the Mies van der Rohe Award became the official architecture prize of the European Union.

Consequently, just like in other aspects of culture, so it is that with this convention as well we get to celebrate excellence in a common yet very diverse architectural heritage.

6 November 2020

The European Dimension in Education

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Rijeka
Date and Time: 10 November 2020, 11:00 – 12:30 CET
Registration Deadline: 30 October 2020
Available seats: 300
Lecturer: Professor Jasminka Ledić
Description: The challenges facing the European Union can be connected in part to the indicators which suggest that a sense of European identity among adults and young people is not shared by all and knowledge about the EU in the general population is limited. The European Parliament in the Resolution on Learning EU at school (2016) emphasises the importance of learning about EU in schools by implementing the concept of European dimension in education. The resolution highlights learning about EU in schools as its key component, and points out that the concept needs to be understood in a broader and deeper sense, as well as that its complex and dynamic nature should be acknowledged. The Resolution in particular promotes the measures pertaining to education and professional development of teachers, which would enable them to implement the European dimension in their work.
The goal of this lecture is to present the results of the research on the European dimension in education in Croatia, exchange experiences, receive comments and explore the possible approaches to resolving the challenges which have been detected at the national level, and are also present in the international environment. The results of the research on the European dimension in education in Croatia (conducted with students, educational specialists, and teachers) reveal a relatively low level of sensibility for, and familiarity with this area, and demand a serious consideration of the approaches to solutions at different levels of the educational system.

10 November 2020

From Dissonant Heritage to Dark Tourism in Southeastern Europe

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Rijeka
Date and Time: 11 November 2020, 16:30 – 17:30 CET
Registration Deadline: 30 October 2020
Available seats: 300
Lecturer: Professor Vjeran Pavlaković
Description: After the fall of communism in Eastern Europe in the 1990s, monuments and other memory sites established by the post-WW2 regimes were destroyed, defaced, removed, and reappropriated, especially in the former Yugoslavia and throughout Southeastern Europe. While some damaged memorials have been restored, others were set aside in special memory parks. Parallel to the struggles over the dissonant heritage of the socialist era was a new monument boom, dedicated not only to the recent conflicts but also to revisionist interpretations of the Second World War or communist repression. This increasingly crowded memoryscape continues to be a subject of political and cultural debates across the region, affecting both domestic politics as well as bilateral relations. This lecture reflects on some of the most recent monument controversies in the region, as well as the growing trend of cultural heritage and dark tourism initiatives based on these memorial sites.

11 November 2020

Sustainable direction for the future of tourism

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Eastern Finland
Date and Time: 12 November 2020, 11:00 – 12:30 CET
Registration Deadline: 6 November 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Research Manager Juho Pesonen
Description: COVID-19 has demolished international tourism industry. However, we should never let a good catastrophe go to waste. We have a chance to restart tourism in a sustainable way. The barriers and drivers for sustainable tourism development in the future are discussed.

Juho Pesonen (PhD) is the head of eTourism research at the Centre for Tourism Studies in the University of Eastern Finland Business School. In his research, Juho focuses on how information and communication technologies are changing tourism business, tourists, and their behavior. He also has keen interest in destination marketing in digital channels.

12 November 2020

Flipped UEF

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Eastern Finland
Date and Time: 13 November 2020, 12:00 – 13:30 CET
Registration Deadline: 30 October 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Assistant Professor Erkko Sointu
Description: Systematic research-based development work for teaching and learning is done since 2015 at University of Eastern Finland (UEF) by UEF interdisciplinary learning environments development team called Team Ameba. Flipped classroom was selected as the main approach for this work aiming to change the university learning culture towards more active, learning-centred Flipped Learning.
Leader of Team Ameba Erkko Sointu (PhD, Education) presents starting points for the research-based development work with Flipped approach, dimensions that developer, teachers and research should consider alongside with some resent research results and practical examples. Erkko works as an assistant professor (tenure track) of learning and novel teaching methods development at UEF School of Educational Sciences and Psychology/Special Education. His research interest lie in flipped classroom/learning, strength-based approaches, and most recently research on learning analytics.

13 November 2020

Decentering Europe – a conversation with Dr Jens Adam

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Bremen
Date and Time: 17 November 2020, 18:00 – 20:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 6 November 2020
Available seats: 300
Lecturer: Professor Shalini Randeria
Description: The “question of Europe” has so far mostly been debated as an “internal affair” that concerns the relations between European states and societies, or the workings of supranational EU-institutions. Such a narrow perspective disregards the (post)colonial relations and global entanglements that have contributed so substantially to the making of Europe in its present form. But many of the recent crises of the European project can arguably be understood at least partly as resulting from this denial.
We will discuss the many past and present entanglements that place Europe in a global context. What kind of alternative frameworks could transcend the conventional Eurocentrism of social sciences and humanities? Could the making of Europe and “Europeanization” be seen as part of open-ended, polyphonic and often contradictory processes? Would it be possible to ask a different set of questions on migration, racism, authoritarian populism or the impact of COVID-19, if we were to understand Europe explicitly as a “global question”?

Shalini Randeria, Rector of the Institute for Human Sciences, Vienna; Professor of Social Anthropology and Sociology at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva and U Bremen Excellence Chair & Worlds of Contradictions Research Group “Soft Authoritarianisms”. Co-editor of “Jenseits des Eurozentrismus. Postkoloniale Perspektiven in den Geschichts- und Kulturwissenschaften”. Frankfurt: Campus 2013 (second expanded edition).

Jens Adam, Cultural/Social Anthropologist; Senior Researcher at the U Bremen Excellence Chair & Worlds of Contradictions Research Group “Soft Authoritarianisms”. Co-editor of “Europa dezentrieren. Globale Verflechtungen neu denken”. Frankfurt: Campus 2019.

17 November 2020

Sustainable and Resilient Development in Europe after the Covid Pandemics

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by Tor Vergata University of Rome
Date and Time: 18 November 2020, 11:00 – 13:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 6 November 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Professor Leonardo Becchetti
Description: The global visible shock of the COVID-19 pandemic and the global (less visible) threat of climate change are demonstrating that the old economic paradigm is obsolete and wrong. Exactly as when a car driver does not consider that brakes are ineffective beyond a certain speed the old paradigm is wrong as it has for long time incorrectly neglected one constraint (environmental sustainability) in its maximisation approach.
We explain how the post COVID-19 recovery has to be resilient, generative and sustainable in order to take into account this lesson, how the economic paradigm is changing and going beyond individual, corporate and policy reductionist views and what are the most urgent policy steps to be taken to foster the change we need to create richer of sense purpose-first societies.

18 November 2020

Is my B2 your B2? Or what it means to be at a CEFR level

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Bremen
Date and Time: 18 November 2020, 18:00 – 20:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 6 November 2020
Available seats: 300
Lecturer: Professor Claudia Harsch
Description: In Europe and beyond, the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) plays a pivotal role in language education. The CEFR is a proficiency framework that describes language abilities on six ascending levels; it is supposed to facilitate comparisons of learning aims and outcomes, syllabi, and exam results, amongst other purposes. Many syllabi and materials in the realm of language education, and most of the internationally operating language tests have been aligned to the CEFR. The talk aims to raise awareness of the assumptions and steps that are entailed in aligning exams and materials to the CEFR, and to develop a deeper understanding of what it means to be at a certain proficiency level.

18 November 2020

A More Perfect Union? On the Economics of European Identity

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by Tor Vergata University of Rome
Date and Time: 20 November 2020, 11:00 – 13:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 6 November 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Professor Gustavo Piga
Description: In his First Inaugural Address, on March 4, 1861 in Washington D.C. US President Abraham Lincoln recalled that “…in 1787 one of the declared objects for ordaining and establishing the US Constitution, was to form a more perfect Union. But if [the] destruction of the Union, by one, or by a part only, of the States, be lawfully possible, the Union is less perfect than before the Constitution, having lost the vital element of perpetuity.” The word perfect was mentioned once more in that speech referring to a potential new Union of seceding states: “Is there such perfect identity of interests among the States to compose a new union, as to produce harmony only, and prevent renewed secession?”

In this perspective, unions of heterogeneous states are seen as dynamic and inherently unstable political arrangements, while also nudged by constitutions and treaties. Lincoln seemed further to imply that homogeneity and a common identity reduce instability and facilitate perpetuity of such arrangements.

But doesn’t a Federation require to leave certain items of decision to each (different) single members? Isn’t this also recognizing the possibility that different identities may survive within a «perfect» Union? Is there an optimal path toward such a perfect Union, minimizing the dangers that may put in harm’s way the Union itself?

We argue that constitutions and legal treaties are necessary but not sufficient instruments for successful Unions, i.e. perpetual Unions of heterogeneous States not threatened by secessions. In fact, the economics of those treaties and the way these frame the economic policy of the Union imply that we might not be able to meet the sufficiency criteria of a good constitution for a more perfect Union. We use historical lessons from the evolution of fiscal federalism in the United States to draw analogies and point at differences for the future potential evolution of the European Union.

20 November 2020

Immigration, Brexit and COVID-19: the future of multicultural Britain

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Essex
Date and Time: 24 November 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 13 November 2020
Available seats: 200
Lecturer: Dr Neli Demireva
Description: Immigration stands high on the public agenda throughout Europe. It played a central role in the 2016 Referendum and continues to dominate Brexit debates. Leave campaigners and several British politicians have blamed migration for undercutting pay and conditions of white British workers in the UK. This perception of migrants undercutting working conditions or taking up resources, such as health care or subsidized housing, in communities already facing adversity has been linked to anti-immigrant feelings and a sense of alienation among majority populations in Europe. It has been assumed that in the face of an aging population in many western societies, immigration can only contribute to the labour force. Yet, perceptions in local communities challenge this narrative of success and question the integration rate of different communities.
Migrants are much more likely to work in low pay jobs with low autonomy than majority members and the second generation. These are indeed jobs in which workers are less likely to work from home, and which are more vulnerable to job cuts. Occupational health risks have been explored in individual countries and recent research has underscored the over-representation of migrant low-skilled workers in a number of key occupations essential for the fight against COVID-19 across European countries.
This talk will focus on the contribution that migrants have to the UK society, and discuss the future of free movement but also of the multiculturalism project in light of the British government’s response to Covid19 and the recent BLM protests.

24 November 2020

Promoting European Union Values in International Relations

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by Nicolaus Copernicus University
Date and Time: 25 November 2020, 10:00 – 11:30 CET
Registration Deadline: 13 November 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Professor Justyna Maliszewska-Nienartowicz & Dr Michał Piechowicz
Description: The aims of the lecture are twofold. On the one hand, to define values and to characterise EU values, on the other to present the concrete activities which show how the EU promotes its values in international relations.
Accordingly, the lecture will have three parts. It will start with the discussion on the definition of values. The discussion will be lead by both lecturers – dr Michał Piechowicz and prof. Justyna Maliszewska-Nienartowicz. First, we will discuss this question together, giving the general ideas how we understand the term ‘value’, then we will ask students about their ideas concerning values. The example questions are the following:
• What does the word „value” mean to you?
• Do you think that values are important in all spheres of life, including political and social one?
• Is there any hierarchy of values where some of them are more important than others? Try to give some examples.
• What categories of values do you know?
After the discussion, the lecturers will recapitulate it and give the final definition of values and examples of different categories of values.
The next problem which will be discussed is connected with the list of EU values provided for in the art. 2 of the Treaty on the EU. Again we will present this issue together and then we will ask questions e.g. if the students think that this list is a sufficient one, how it differs from art. 21 of the Treaty on the EU which regulates the principles of external actions of the EU etc. In other way we “will go” from a more general issue of values to more concrete issue of principles binding the EU in international relations. We will also try to show how values and principles are interconnected in the frames of the EU external actions.
The last part of the lecture will concentrate on the examples of the EU activities which confirm that this organisation is based on certain values and principles and tries to promote them in international relations. We will start with the presentation of the EU regional strategies – enlargement to Central and Eastern Europe, stabilisation strategy in the Western Balkans, and the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership – in order to trace the development of the EU’s norms and instruments in support of democracy and human rights. We will also refer to the EU Neighbourhood Policy. Next, there will be a discussion where the students will have the opportunity to evaluate the presented EU activities.

25 November 2020

Parliamentary Democracy in Europe

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by Nicolaus Copernicus University
Date and Time: 26 November 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 13 November 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Professor Maciej Serowaniec
Description: The functioning of the European Union is founded on representative (parliamentary) democracy. Also debates on the future of Europe have always been debates about how to make Europe more democratic and how to make democracy work better on the EU level.
This lecture aims to clarify the multilevel character of parliamentary democracy in the European Union. It combines theoretical-conceptual considerations with empirical analysis. Theoretically the focus is on exploring the implications of the multilevel parliamentary democracy. A key premise here is that there is no single institution in the EU that embodies parliamentary sovereignty, but rather that this sovereignty is dispersed over the different parliaments at the national and the European level. This raises important questions about how the wills expressed in the different parliaments are coordinated. In what way do parliaments develop and (re-)adapt their political, legal and institutional role within the European Union? Also it raises questions about how fundamental democratic values – like political equality, collective deliberation and effective public control – are best maintained in the EU. Then, the lecture will be devoted to the relationship between parliaments and citizens in European Union. Communicating the EU is a complex matter, but national parliaments, due to their proximity to the citizens, are in a unique position to reach out to them and to make EU politics more transparent and accountable. The aim of this part of lecture is to investigate the best practices in involving civil society and citizens in debates on EU matters, and find out how parliaments of EU Member States communicate their activities related to European Union affairs to the general public.

26 November 2020

Led By Donkeys: Englishness, Nostalgia, and Crisis

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Essex
Date and Time: 27 November 2020, 17:00 – 19:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 13 November 2020
Available seats: 200
Lecturer: Professor Lucy Noakes
Description: Anyone looking at England in the spring of 2020 might have wondered why, in the midst of a pandemic, which has currently infected and killed more people in Britain than in any other part of Europe, the country seemed to be obsessed by a conflict some 70 years ago. From ex-UKIP MEPs tweeting that Luftwaffe bombs didn’t keep the British out of their pubs, and so no virus was going to do so, to conga lines in streets celebrating the 75th anniversary of VE Day in the midst of a national lockdown, the war was everywhere.

In this paper I want to trace some of the reasons for this, looking at the creation of an enduring cultural memory of the Second World War as the country’s ‘finest hour’ during the war itself and since. While almost all European countries have cultural memories of the Second World War that are shaped by the needs and demands of the present, this memory of the war has fed into a sense of ‘English exceptionalism’ that has, arguably, led to a series of crises in British, and especially English, public life. I’ll think in particular about the shift from a memory of ‘the People’s War’ to a memory of ‘Churchill’s War’ and how this might have enabled the war’s co-option by the right-wing populism that has been so evident in Britain over the past decade.

27 November 2020

Law in Motion: A Legal Historical Journey across Europe

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by Maastricht University
Date and Time: 30 November 2020, 15:30 – 17:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 20 November 2020
Available seats: 300
Lecturer: Associate Professor Agustin Parise
Description: Law is a social science that is in constant motion. It evolves, and it is far from being dormant. Ideas circulate across time and space, adapting to the needs of different societies at different times.
This presentation will offer an overview of the evolution of law in Europe. It will do so by addressing seminal events that serve as landmarks, and that point to paradigmatic changes in law and society. For example, the presentation will start by addressing the early emergence of Classical Roman law, to move then into the rediscovery of that system of law during the eleventh century in Northern Italy. The journey will continue by looking at the development of humanism and the re-emergence of natural law, during the Early Modern period. Further, the presentation will look at nineteenth-century codification of the law, considering it a paramount landmark in Europe and beyond. The presentation will offer concluding remarks on the recent efforts to attain a harmonization of law in Europe.
The presentation will aim to provide answers to, amongst others, the following questions: who are the main actors that trigger those seminal events?, which factors motivate those actors in their efforts?, and which were the main sources that those actors had at hand when experiencing change? Above all, the presentation will aim to convey that law is marked by continuity and should not be approached within watertight compartments. Law is shaped–indeed–by a specific society at a specific time.

30 November 2020

The idea of Europe – and its Consequences

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by Maastricht University
Date and Time: 1 December 2020, 11:00 – 12:30 CET
Registration Deadline: 20 November 2020
Available seats: 300
Lecturer: Assistant Professor Ferenc Laczo
Description: The lecture addresses three large historical questions that shape our contemporary conceptions of Europe. First, the lecturer will talk about the puzzling geography of a continent that is not quite a continent. Whereas the borders of Europe are rather clear in the West, the South and the North, Europe being part of the Eurasian landmass, it needs to continuously delimit itself vis-à-vis the East to remain distinct. The lecturer shall explore some of the dilemmas and tensions that has resulted from this and how they inform policies today. Second, the lecturer will address the religious connotations of ‘Europe’ and ‘Europeanness’? Is Europe perhaps little more than a secularized version of the realm of Christendom and, if so, what are the implications of that? How has Europe accommodated religious difference in its modern history and how does it do so today? Third, the lecturer will inquire more specifically into the concepts of Europe that have been employed in the post-war project of integration, focusing on the tension between a singular concept and the differentiated space the European project has in fact created. Ultimately, the lecturer shall ask how historical legacies – the concept of a continent, the idea of specific religious realm, visions of unity – continue to shape us and with what consequences as we navigate Europe’s place and role in an increasingly globalized world in the 21st century.

1 December 2020

Identities & Memory politics in Europe – the links between the European project and colonialism

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Antwerp
Date and Time: 3 December 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 20 November 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Professor Heleen Touquet & Professor Katrien Schaubroeck
Description: This lecture gives an overview of the role of memory politics in the European Union and seeks to examine how values and identities are expressed through its narratives of the past.
The memory politics of the European Union finds itself at a particular crossroads in the last few years, due to the multiple contemporaneous crises. The EU’s central narrative has changed significantly over the past decade: its founding myth was originally based on the remembrance of the Holocaust and “Never again”. This narrative was adapted after the Enlargement of 2004, to include the experiences of the Eastern European countries under communism and has now involved now into a broader narrative of anti-totalitarianism. Based on this central narrative, the EU and the European parliament also act as a norm entrepreneur with regard to moral remembrance. However, moral remembrance (and cosmopolitan citizenship) are increasingly challenged by populist memory politics which run counter to its fundamental principles and emphasize national categories of identification. Emphasizing group identities can be empowering and liberating but they also run the risk of becoming oppressive and exclusive. In the lecture we will discuss two ways in which harmful versus liberating identification with a group can be distinguished: first by looking at its origin (does it originate from protest against injustice collectively suffered, political and more broadly human rights collectively taken away?), second by looking at its goal (does it aim at establishing superiority or equality?).

3 December 2020

Colonialism and Europe: the heritage of Enlightenment

YUFE Academy Lecture hosted by the University of Antwerp
Date and Time: 4 December 2020, 10:00 – 12:00 CET
Registration Deadline: 20 November 2020
Available seats: 250
Lecturer: Professor Heleen Touquet & Professor Katrien Schaubroeck
Description: This lecture will explore two interrelated themes connected to the European Union and the memory of colonialism.

1. The history of the Eurafrican project and its links with European integration
2. Colonialism and the enlightenment

The memory of colonialism is one of the blind spots in the EU’s memory framework. In the last decade demands to deal with the colonial and imperial past (for instance through the Black Lives Matter Movement) have been raised in various member states. The EU itself and the project of EU integration however are also closely linked to colonialism through the Eurafrican idea. In the first part of the lecture, we discuss the Eurafrican project, its continuation and its implications for dealing with the past in Europe. In the second part of the lecture, we will analyse the complicated relation between Enlightenment and colonialism. While some 18th century philosophers spoke out against the barbaric treatment of people in colonies, many postcolonial thinkers argue that enlightened rationalism helped to justify European imperialism. We will approach this uncomfortable tension from different angles. One angle will be offered by the Dutch social and cultural anthropologist Gloria Wekker who explains, in her book White Innocence: Paradoxes of Colonialism and Race, that it is precisely the belief that one is guided by reason that can blind one for the irrational and immoral patterns of thinking and behaving that perpetuate both on an individual and a collective level. Furthermore we will argue that especially canon-based disciplines, like philosophy, should be very attentive of the heritage they import in contemporary research and teaching.

4 December 2020