Decolonial and Postcolonial Perspectives on the Eastern (of) Europe Specialist Course at Ghent University

The lectures series is part of Ghent University Doctoral School programme aimed to advance postcolonial and decolonial critiques from a Central and Eastern European (CEE) standpoint to overcome the epistemic dichotomy of West versus East, North vs. South prevailing in the Western academic canon. The lectures are open to students and academics of all levels and disciplines interested in the theme and theory building. The lecture series is organised by the Department of Social Work and Social Pedagogy in close collaboration with inter-university partners CESSMIR and EurEast and outside-university partners ULB, Euroglot, and UNU-CRIS.

A Way Forward, Beyond Essentialization (co-hosted with EUROGLOT)

20 October 2023

Dialogue between Szilvia Nagy (CEU) and Prof. Dr Madina Tlostanova (LinköpingUniversity) – location Zaal Haas en Vos, de Krook library (Miriam Makebaplein 1, 9000 Gent)

How can we comprehend and make sense of the epistemic space and ‘grey zone’ between the traditional understandings of the ‘Global North’ and ‘Global South’ through relational approaches? Various concepts have emerged in the last years to frame post-soviet lived experiences – Eurasia, Global East, Central- and Eastern Europe, Transperipheral–, but so far none of them seem to be widely accepted. Why is it so particularly difficult/challenging to address this epistemic ‘grey space’? How can we explore and understand the spaces opened by the sudden rupture caused by the fall of the Soviet world? Avoiding the trap of re- essentialising the concepts, we seek to point out the liminal positionalities between epistemically marginalised areas in the world, such as the global souths and global easts. Therefore, we will invite the participants to think relationally and historically, this way opening a way for unexpected dialogues and future projects. 

Chair: Prof. Dr. Aude Merlin (ULB)