Pictures, Video & Audio

Focus Transformation #2

Entkoppelte Gesellschaft

In German language

In her research project ‘Entkoppelte Gesellschaft’ (Decoupled Society), sociologist Yana Milev points to problems in the context of the German-German unification process that, according to Milev, have so far not been sufficiently acknowledged in their scope by politics and society. These include demographic slumps, unemployment, poverty or the devaluation of origins and qualifications, which have led to social decline, an increase in mortality or depopulation. According to Milev, the alleged convergence of the two sub-societies is not confirmed by surveys.

Yana Milev, Christoph Tannert and Thomas Krüger will analyse and discuss the question of how the process should be continued in economic, political, social and cultural terms. Their paths in life crossed in the 1980s in the subculture scene of the GDR. They find a common starting point for their conversation in the artistic and intellectual legacy of the GDR, the relationship between artistic production and scientific research, and the role of cultural education in times of transformation.

In 2021, the Kulturstiftung Schloss Wiepersdorf focusses on the theme of ‘transformation.’ Starting from processes in the context of the reunification of Germany, transformation processes will also be considered in other fields and countries, and the experiences of the international fellows of the residency program will be incorporated into the debates.

Yana Milev, born in Leipzig, is a habilitated sociologist. She studied Fine Arts in Dresden, exhibited at Documenta in 1997, and subsequently lived two years in Japan on a DAAD scholarship for ethnographic studies. In 2008, she received her philosophical doctorate in Vienna. In 2014, she completed her postdoctoral treatise and was appointed as a qualified university lecturer in Sociology of Culture with degree from the University of St. Gallen. In 2017, Milev founded the independent platform AGIO | Social Analysis + Political Education. She is the initiator and director of the research project "Decoupled Society - East Germany since 1989/90. A Sociological Laboratory", which is published as a multi-volume series by Peter Lang International Academic Publishers.

Thomas Krüger, born in Buttstedt/Thuringia, has been president of the Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung (Federal Agency for Civic Education) since 2000. He has been president of the German Children's Fund since 1995. He is also second deputy chairman of the Commission for Youth Media Protection and a member of the board of trustees for the German President's History Competition. From 1991 to 1994 he was Senator for Youth and Family in Berlin, and from 1994 to 1998 he was a member of the German Bundestag. In 2017, Krüger co-organized the expert conference ‘East German Elites. Dreams, Realities and Perspectives’ on elite exchange in East Germany from 1990 onwards. Since then, he has been addressing the "desiderata of transformation".

Christoph Tannert, born in Leipzig, is an exhibition organizer and author, since 1991 project manager and since 2000 also artistic director of Künstlerhaus Bethanien Berlin. He studied art history and classical archaeology at the Humboldt University in Berlin. His numerous publications can be found in art catalogs and in the specialized press. In 2016, together with Eugen Blume, he curated the exhibition Gegenstimmen. Art in the GDR 1976-1989. In 2017, he curated the focus on the subcultural scene of the GDR for the exhibition Geniale Dilletanten. Subculture of the 1980s in West and East Germany at the Albertinum in Dresden.

— The event was broadcast and recorded on 22 April 2021. —

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