SFB 1288 MIDTERM-CONFERENCE 16.06.2022 - 18.06.2022
The way we compare objects, concepts or people is closely related to the way we form a picture of the world and how it changes. When we compare, we attach more importance to certain objects of comparison and comparative views than to others. As a social practice and scientific method, comparison creates order; it is the key to the genesis, change and preservation of categories, norms and values.
At the SFB 1288-Midterm Conference from 16 to 18 June 2022 in Bielefeld, the following questions will be explored: What role does comparison play in the perception, representation and shaping of social and historical change? More specifically: Are practices of comparing catalysts, drivers or mirrors of change? How do these practices develop and in what ways are they influenced by other social, cultural and scientific practices and processes? Especially here, the question of how these processes and situations are modelled also plays a role. What factors are included in models of change and how are they weighted?
Processes of social change can be initiated suddenly, for example in response to political, economic and environmental challenges. Or they can be gradual and take place over a long period of time; they can affect smaller systems, communities and practices or have far-reaching, sometimes even global and historical impacts. Together with (inter)national speakers, the diversity and plurality of such processes of change will be considered. We will discuss how these processes are conceived, represented and brought about. We want to approach the topic by examining the particular orders, models and perceptions in different time periods and world regions that serve to describe, explain or bring about phenomena of change, and how they are related to practices of comparison.
In addition to presentations by SFB 1288 members, we welcome the following speakers, among others:
Mary Morgan, London School of Economics and Political Science, London: Comparing Countries: The Paradox of Too Many Numbers?
David Nirenberg, Department of History, Chicago / IAS Institute for Advances Study, Princeton: Writing the long History of Race: Comparison, Analogy, or Inter-Connection?
Joan-Pau Rubiés, ICREA & Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona: Early Modern Comparatism and the Idea of Historical Progress
Angus Nicholls, School of Languages, Linguistics and Film, London: Theories of Stadial Change in the German 'Geisteswissenschaften' around 1870-1900: Bastian, Dilthey, Scherer and Boas