During the 2016 summer semester, Sonja Kmec and Oliver Kohns are organising the master’s course “Speaking in Tongues: Political Concepts in a Historical and Multilingual Perspective”. This will enable students to develop a critical understanding of current concepts of political theory and cultural studies.
Master class offered by Sonja Kmec and Oliver Kohns in the 2016 summer semester (20 hours).
This course seeks to develop a critical understanding of a range of concepts currently debated in the field of political theory and cultural studies. Building on the central notion of “whiteness”, we will analyse the protean meanings of “race” and “ethnicity” in contemporary discourses. We will combine theoretical approaches with examples of everyday culture (e.g. advertisements, political speeches, internet forums).
Study trip for the masterclass
As part of the masterclass ‘Speaking in Tongues: Political Concepts in a Historical and Multilingual Perspective’, 11 University of Luxembourg students took a trip to Trondheim (Norway) from 26 to 27 April 2016. NTNU Trondheim arranged a ‘tandem’ seminar bringing together the course organised by Sonja Kmec and Oliver Kohns with the ‘Identity and Community’ course run by Claudia Lenz at NTNU.
The ‘Speaking in Tongues’ course is part of CLEAR (Concept Learning for Empowerment, through Analysis and Reflection), a network of academics from various universities and institutions developing new methods for concept learning and intercultural education.
Building on this platform’s approach, the students from Luxembourg and Trondheim spent two days discussing the topics of ‘whiteness’ and ‘orientalism’. As well as critically examining and debating cultural theory concepts, the students also analysed media reporting on current events (e.g. on the events of New Year’s Eve 2016 in Cologne) from a historical and critical discourse perspective.
The central focus was the question of how ‘whites’ were visually depicted cultural history, and what effect this still has on media depictions of ethnicity and gender.
This study trip for Luxembourg students was generously funded by the ‘Master in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts’ and the Key Area MIS together with NTNU Trondheim.