Biography-Berlin

Sabine Flick 1024 683 Susann Schmeisser

Sabine Flick

Fellow, Berlin Center

April – September 2020

E-Mail: s.flick@em.uni-frankfurt.de

Sabine Flick

Sabine Flick is researcher at the Insitute for Social Reserach at the Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main. Her research assumes an interdisciplinary outlook, crossing over the fields of social theory and critical theory, medical sociology, the sociology of the professions and questions of normativity and critique in empirical research. 2020 she completed her habilitation on the topic “On the Biographization of Social Suffering – Psychotherapeutic Practice in the Working Society”. Her work has been published in international journals such as Social Science and Medicine,  Distinktion. Journal of Social Theory or the European Journal for Social Theory.

During her stay in Berlin she worked on social suffering as psychic crises and the increasing dethematization of the social in mental health institutions and professions.  Her interest focuses on how a Critical Theory of Social Suffering can be accompanied with adequate empirical sociological research methods. While in Berlin and during the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic she prepared an empirical research project reflecting on the economic crisis associated with the COVID-19 pandemic that will likely increase the depth and breadth of precarious and highly demanding work. Here is a preprint of this work on „Work-related suffering as Social Suffering“. She also wrote a paper during her stay at the Center on the „Biographization of Social Suffering“ which is published with the Journal „Westend. Neue Zeitschrift für Sozialforschung“ in Fall 2020.

Allison Weir 1024 682 Susann Schmeisser

Allison Weir

Fellow, Berlin Center

June 2019

Allison Weir

Allison Weir is a Canadian social and political philosopher. She co-founded the Institute for Social Justice in Sydney, Australia, where she was Research Professor and Director of the Doctoral Program in Social Political Thought until the Institute closed in 2018. Before moving to Australia she held a tenured professorship in Philosophy and in Women and Gender Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University in Canada. She returned to Canada in 2019, and is a Visiting Scholar at the Centre for Ethics at the University of Toronto.
Her book, Decolonizing Freedom, will be published by Oxford University Press in 2021. She is the author of Identities and Freedom (Oxford) and Sacrificial Logics (Routledge).

Nikolas Kompridis 1024 683 Susann Schmeisser

Nikolas Kompridis

Fellow, Berlin Center

June 2019

Nikolas Kompridis

Nikolas Kompridis is Research Professor in Philosophy and Political Thought and Foundation Director of the Institute for Social Justice at the Australian Catholic University. He is the author of The Aesthetic Turn (Bloomsbury, 2014), Critique and Disclosure (MIT Press, 2006), and Philosophical Romanticism (Routledge, 2006). He is currently completing a book on Aesthetics and Political Theory, which will be published by Polity Press, and another book, Critique and Receptivity, which is currently under review. Two other book projects involve an edited volume on Transforming the Anthropocene, and a volume of his writings on romanticism. Kompridis has published widely in journals and edited volumes on a wide and diverse set of topic.
His areas of specialisation are 19th and 20th century European Philosophy; Critical Theory, aesthetics and political philosophy. He optained his Ph.D. in 1992 at the interdisciplinary programme in Social and Political Thought at York University, Toronto.

Jonathan David Klein 1024 683 Susann Schmeisser

Jonathan David Klein

Fellow, Berlin Center

April 2020 – June 2021

Email: jonathan.david.klein@hu-berlin.de

Jonathan David Klein

Jonathan Klein is a Fellow at the Center in Berlin. He studied European Studies, International Politics and Political Theory in Maastricht, Tokyo, New York and Frankfurt am Main and subsequently worked as a research assistant at the Cluster of Excellence “The Formation of Normative Orders”. He is currently writing his doctoral thesis in Frankfurt am Main (under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Martin Saar) on the systematization and reconsideration of the concept of societal alienation in social theory.

According to his interpretation, the concept of societal alienation refers to a specific constitution of social relations, in which these relations become an alien power, relatively independent of the will of the actors, who nevertheless produce them. His work seeks to demonstrate that the concept of alienation is indispensable for understanding the social-theoretical specificity of the social interdependence constituted by the system of commodity production.

Grasping the constitution of this social connection with its contradictory dynamics is the basis for arriving at a more profound understanding of the economic and political crises of our time. Furthermore, such a perspective is oriented towards an immanent critique of the capitalist economy, holding the promise for developing more realistic perspectives of transformation.

Jean Louise Cohen 1024 683 Susann Schmeisser

Jean Louise Cohen

Senior Fellow, Berlin Center

June – July 2019

Email: jlc5@columbia.edu

Jean Louise Cohen

Jean Louise Cohen is the Nell and Herbert Singer Professor of Political Thought at Columbia University, New York. She is specialized in contemporary political and legal theory with particular research interests in democratic theory, critical theory, Civil society, gender and the law. Her influential contributions span from a critique of the missing political philosophy in Marx to a reactualization of Habermas‘ theory of society as the basis of contemporaray democratic theory.

In her current research project, Jean Cohen criticizes the appeal to a populist base as regressive even when issued within the context of left-wing populist radical democracy. The fallacy of populism is that it equates a homogenized idea of „the people“ with the democratic social body. Modern representative democracies, however, depend on a differentiated civil society which allows for the articulation of diverse and opposing interests and institutionalizes the mediation between those interests, as well as the more formal democratic decision-making processes.

Andrew Arato 1024 682 Susann Schmeisser

Andrew Arato

Senior Fellow, Berlin Center

June – July 2019

Email: arato@newschool.edu

Andrew Arato

Andrew Arato is a Professor of Political and Social Theory in the Department of Sociology at The New School for Social Research, New York. He is a member of the famous Hungarian School of Marxism in his early intellectual formation and is widely recognised for his influential book Civil Society and Political Theory, coauthored with Jean L. Cohen. He is also known for his work on critical theory, constitutions, and was from 1994 to 2014 co-editor of the journal Constellations with Nancy Fraser.

During his stay at the Humanities and Social Change Center he worked on a study of the authoritarian impulse discernible in right-wing populism as based on a phantasized reduction of the complexity of civil society to the unity of a homogenous people. To understand the role of religious extremism in this context, it is crucial to de-link it from traditional and particular communities of faith, and understand it as a reaction to a crisis of a civil society failing to mediate the diverse interests and democratic claims of its constitutency.

Robin Celikates 150 150 Susann Schmeisser

Robin Celikates

Deputy Director, Berlin Center

Freie Universität Berlin, Institute of Philosophy

Email: robin.celikates@fu-berlin.de

Robin Celikates

Since October 2019 Robin Celikates ist deputy director of the Humanities and Social Change Center Berlin.

Prof. Robin Celikates´s research is mainly in political philosophy, critical theory and social philosophy, and focuses particularly on questions of democracy, migration and citizenship, civil disobedience within democratic systems, the moral philosophy of recognition, and methodologies in political philosophy and social philosophy.

Other areas of interest include the philosophy of social sciences, moral philosophy, Rousseau, and political and social theory.

Andreas Malm 150 150 Susann Schmeisser

Andreas Malm

Fellow, Berlin Center

January 2020 – June 2020

Email: andreas.malm@hek.lu.se

Andreas Malm

Andreas Malm is an associate professor of human ecology from Lund University, Sweden. His research primarily focuses on various aspects of the climate crisis. He is the author of, among other books, Fossil Capital: The Rise of Steam Power and the Roots of Global Warming (Verso, 2016) and The Progress of This Storm: Nature and Society in a Warming World (Verso, 2018). In 2020, he will publish a short book on the corona crisis, as well as How to Blow Up a Pipeline: Learning to Fight in a World on Fire and White Skin, Black Fuel: On the Dangers of Fossil Fascism, written together with The Zetkin Collective, all from Verso. He is part of a research project on negative emissions technologies; forthcoming from Rutgers University Press is Has it Come to This? The Promises and Perils of Geoengineering on the Brink, edited by J.P. Sapinski, Holly Jean Buck and Andreas Malm. He is also working on a people’s history of wilderness.

During his stay at Humanities and Social Change Center, Andreas Malm wrote a book on „Corona, Climate, Chronic Emergency. War Communism in the Twenty-First Century“, Verso Verlag, London/New York, which is published in autumn 2020.  He prepared an excerpt of the book, which you can find here.

Aldo Beretta 1024 683 Susann Schmeisser

Aldo Beretta

Postdoctoral Fellow, Berlin Center

October 2019 – March 2020

Research Affiliate Postdoctoral Fellow (since April 2020)

Email: aldo.beretta@hu-berlin.de

Aldo Beretta

Aldo Beretta is a philosopher and political theorist. After receiving his PhD he has held research and lecture positions at the Alice Salomon Hochschule and the Forschungs- und Dokumentationszentrum Chile-Lateinamerika. Beretta has been political advisor for several governments in Latin America and collaborated with the UNESCO Chair for University and Regional Integration. Currently, his research focuses on the conflictual relation between democracy and capitalism. Based on the Habermasian opposed principles of social integration, he analyses social pathologies derived from the primacy of global economic forces over democratic institutions. Some of his publications include: “Handelsabkommen Neu Aufgelegt” in Lateinamerika Nachrichten, N. 533. (Berlin 2018). “Observaciones sobre la Crítica de Habermas a Marx”, in Constelaciones, N. 9, (Madrid 2017). Human Rights and the Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and Mexico, FDCL (Berlin, 2015).

During his stay at HSC Center Berlin, Aldo did research on the relation between democracy and capitalism. Here is a preprint of this work on “Democracy and economy: traces of an immanent crisis”.

Charles Taylor 150 150 Susann Schmeisser

Charles Taylor

Benjamin Chair, Berlin Center

May – June 2019

Email: cmt1111111@aol.com

Charles Taylor

In June 2019, the Walter Benjamin Lectures took place for the first time at the Humanities and Social Change Center Berlin at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. The renowned Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor inaugurated the prominent series. On three consecutive evenings, Taylor gave lectures on “Democracy and its Crises”, covering various forms of democratic deterioration, such as political alienation, increasing inequality, xenophobia and polarization, as well as possible ways out of crisis.

Charles Taylor is one of the most important thinkers of our time. His early work on the embeddedness of cognition in the life world alone represents a paradigm shift in the social sciences. Guided by his novel reading of Hegel, Taylor subsequently embarked on an extraordinary research program: to elucidate and overcome the contradictions of modernity in the light of modernity’s own development, drawing out its limitations and imbalances. This project is laid out in two monumental monographs, one on the history of the self and one on secularization. More recently, Taylor has brought the motif of obscured social grounds to bear on questions of democratic politics and has developed a recognition-theory of tolerance. He has traced progressive trajectories, yet also started to analyze how the disavowal of shared values, imaginaries, and social relations unleashed destructive tendencies.