Course date

30 June - 11 July, 2003
Application deadline:
15 February, 2003
Course Director(s): 

Andrew Herscher

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Comparative and World Literatures, Durham, NC, United States of America
Course Faculty: 

Conerly Casey

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Department of Anthropology, Los Angeles, United States of America

Allen Feldman

Ljubljana Graduate School of Humanities, Anthropology of Everyday Life Program, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Uli Linke

Anthropology, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, United States of America

Tomislav Longinovic

University of Wisconsin - Madison, Slavic and Comparative Literature, Madison, United States of America

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, a new international political geography has emerged, with certain areas - such as the Balkans, Rwanda, Sri Lanka, and Israel and the occupied territories - framed as zones of ethnic, religious or nationalist conflict. "Culture" is often invoked as a contributing cause of these conflicts, but it is only recently that the cultural aspects of these conflicts have become central to a range of disciplines, old and new: anthropology, cultural history, studies of visual and material culture, and studies of trauma and memory. On the bases of these new conceptualizations of the cultural, this course will examine political violence not as an adjunct to or a result of cultural activity, but as a fully cultural materialization and performance. The course will thus consider the centrality of cultural issues in ethnic, religious and nationalist conflict, attempting to ascertain the place of political conflict and violence within the field of culture and the status of the experience, representation and interpretation of conflict and violence as cultural phenomena.