Politics and Social Change Workshop

Exploring the Nexus between Local, State, National, and Transnational Actors

This seminar is open to the public.

This workshop extends and expands upon the work begun by the Conversations Across Borders Workshop.

According to some media sources, the current nationalist tendencies in US and European politics may signal the beginning of the end of globalization. Indeed, the current US administration has overseen crackdowns on international migration, proposals to limit trade, and proposals to slash budgets for humanitarian and development aid to poor countries. But globalization—and the movement of ideas, capital, goods, and people that goes along with it—is unlikely to disappear. Global capitalism is a more powerful force than national politics; by choice or by force, people will continue to interact and move across borders. 

This seminar explores the intersection of politics, society, and development in the current historical moment. Nationalist ideologies have gained power, but the social contract between citizen and state is no longer solely fulfilled within the boundaries of the nation-state. How will these new dynamics unfold, and what will their effects be on institutions and individuals? Our workshop explores politics and development from a multiscalar perspective. Our speakers explore various types of political actors and actions operating at multiple levels and multiple sites; consider the ways in which these complement, subvert, or otherwise intertwine with one another; and ask what that means for the nation as a viable frame for understanding identity, culture, and politics. We meet twice a month, and encourage participants to present works in progress, as well as provide opportunities for collaborative research endeavors. 

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See also: Open Seminars