Hartmut Rosa appointed „Distinguished Senior Scientist“ of the Johanna Quandt Young Academy

For his outstanding achievements in research and his exceptional commitment to promoting young scholars and international academic cooperation, Professor Hartmut Rosa, Director of the Max-Weber-Kolleg at the University of Erfurt, has now been appointed „Distinguished Senior Scientist“ of the Frankfurt Johanna Quandt Yound Academy.

Since 2018, the interdisciplinary and international Johanna Quandt Young Academy at Goethe (JQ Young Academy, JQY A), under the leadership of its director, Professor Matthias Lutz-Bachmann, has been supporting a number of selected excellent early-career researchers from all departments at Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main in their academic careers. These are admitted to the Academy as Fellows. In addition, the Academy invites three to four internationally established researchers as so-called „Distinguished Senior Scientists“, who act as an external scientific committee for the JQ Young Academy.

The award, which is endowed with 10,000 €, is accompanied by the fact that Hartmut Rosa is involved in the annual selection of the fellows as a committee member for three years. In addition, he will take part in the annual conferences of the JQ Young Academy and contribute with a keynote speech.

Rosa: „I am very pleased about this award, which recognises and supports a model of intergenerational cooperation with senior and junior fellows that we have been successfully practising at the Max-Weber-Kolleg for a long time.“

Max-Weber-Kolleg welcomes new fellows and collegians

In the summer semester of 2021, the Max Weber Centre for Advanced Cultural and Social Studies at the University of Erfurt will once again welcome numerous new researchers from Germany and abroad.

The research group „Religion and Urbanity: Reciprocal Formations“, which focuses on India, welcomes the new coordinator Dr Klara-Maeve O’Reilly (Dublin/Görlitz) this semester. In addition, the following new fellows are welcomed: Professor Konstantin Akinsha (Italy), who will come to Erfurt again to work on the topic „Writing the 5th Gospel“; Professor Meera Dass (India), who will work on the topic „Through the Pillar: Religion and Urbanity of Besnagar 2nd century BCE to 7th century CE“, and Professor Cristiana Facchini (Italy), who is continuing her project „As a nautilus shell… Religious Diversity and Urbanity. An historical journey“. Dr. Francesca Fulminante (UK) will discuss her project on „Religion and Urbanity in its Formation: A case study from Early Rome and Central Italy“ in the collegiate research group. Professor Nimrod Luz (Israel) is investigating „The Infrastructures of Religiocity in Acre. Materialities of Faiths and their Politics in a Mixed Israeli City“. Dr Harry Maier (Canada) is working on „Practising the City: Spatial Imagination, Imperial Location, and Reciprocal Processes of Urban Transformation in Second Century Christianity“. And Professor Joachim Trezib (Germany) is investigating „Spatial formations of ‚Geist‘: Edgar Salin’s nomological concept of statehood and its relationship to the circle of Stefan George“.

The group „Social Theory and Social Philosophy“ welcomes the Predocs Heinrich Hofer and Steven Sello, who want to develop initial ideas for doctoral projects into an exposé within the framework of their Predoc fellowship. Associate Junior Fellow Dr Moritz von Kalckreuth is researching „On the interdisciplinary and inner-philosophical justification of a philosophy of values“. Associate Fellow Dr Christoph Baumgartner (Netherlands) is coming for another short stay to work on „Civil Relations under Conditions of Religious Diversity“.

In the International Graduate School „Resonant Self-World Relations in Ancient and Modern Socio-Religious Practices“, which is carried out in cooperation with the University of Graz, the doctoral student Seraphim Schirrmacher was associated, who will work on the topic „Music Lessons as a Space for Resonance in School?

The new special research area Transregio 294 „Strukturwandel des Eigentums“ is conducting research in cooperation with colleagues from Jena. In this context, we welcome Dr. Stefan Schmalz as Junior Research Team Leader as well as the Junior Researchers Jing Cheng, Helen A. Gibson, Sanjay Jothe, Ling Li, Anna Möllers, Moana Jean Packo, Varun Patil and Dirk Schuck. Maria Dell’Isola, Sofia Bianchi Manchini and Asfia Jamal will join them in the course of the summer semester.

The director of the Max-Weber-Kolleg, Hartmut Rosa, is pleased about the newcomers from Germany and abroad and emphasises: „On the one hand, we are happy to be able to offer the young researchers a great research environment and exciting contact persons thanks to the many experienced fellows at the Max-Weber-Kolleg, and on the other hand, we have made the experience that our fellows learn a lot from the young researchers. All the more reason for us to look forward to joint research and learning processes.“

Thuringian Research Award for Hartmut Rosa

Every year, the Free State of Thuringia honours excellent research achievements with the Thuringian Research Award. This year, the prize in the category „Basic Research“ goes to the sociologists Professor Klaus Dörre (University of Jena), Professor Stefan Lessenich (LMU Munich) and to Professor Hartmut Rosa, the director of the Max-Weber-Kolleg at the University of Erfurt, who also works in Jena at the Friedrich Schiller University.

The three receive the 25,000 euro award for their work on post-growth societies. Within the framework of the research group „Landnahme, Beschleunigung, Aktivierung. On the (De-)Stabilisation of Modern Growth Societies“, the sociologists have investigated the structural growth constraints of modern societies and uncovered the social mechanisms of „always more and never enough“. The research group has been funded by the German Research Foundation between 2011 and 2019.

The world, according to the diagnosis, is in an economic-ecological pincer crisis: economic growth as we know it from the past is no longer possible without further exacerbating the catastrophic ecological consequences. Conversely, climate protection and the conservation of natural resources require a departure from previous economic and transport concepts. „The primacy of growth has reached its limit. Growth exacerbates the current crisis of capitalism and no longer offers the solution,“ underlines Professor Klaus Dörre. The Professor of Sociology of Labour, Industry and Economics at the University of Jena accepted the award on behalf of the entire team of the research group. He emphasises that the current Corona pandemic exacerbates the pincer crisis on the one hand and makes the underlying mechanisms clearer on the other: The fact that Germany actually achieved its climate goals in 2020 was mainly due to the Corona lockdowns and not so much the result of a successful strategy. „The example shows that the system change to a post-growth society has already begun. If we don’t actively shape it ourselves, the next crisis will further force us to do so.“

The sociologists want to follow the development even after the conclusion of the research college – the Thuringian Research Award, according to the sociologists, is both recognition and motivation for this.

Elisabeth Begemann presents a working paper on ‚The Dancing Deity: Diminishing the Goddess Libertas on the Palatine‘

In the Speech for His House (de domo sua), Cicero needs to persuade his audience that the shrine erected by his adversary, Clodius, was not a public cult site or any cult site at all, in order for it to be removed and his house returned to him. One of the means in which he attempts to do this is by suggesting that no cult beyond a personal Clodian cult ever took place here. As focus of this cult, he suggests the image of courtesan stolen from a gravesite in Tanagra. The allusion is suggestive: Tanagra became famous in the 19th century when small clay figurines of women and goddesses were unearthed from Hellenistic graves. These figures showed richly dressed and painted women in a variety of poses, their dress clinging to their bodies, seated or dancing. As Maik Patzelt demonstrated, Clodius dedicated the shrine to Libertas by employing a three-step dancing figure, known from other cultic contexts. By connecting Clodius’ dancing dedication with the figure of a dancing deity, he connects the two in the minds of his listeners. Moreover, by suggesting that Clodius’ Libertas was not only “just” a personal deity, but her statue stolen from the grave of a prostitute, he diminishes the supposed deity in the mind of his listeners by making her unacceptable on multiple levels: social (as a prostitute), legal (as a stolen item) and religious (as coming from a grave, thus tainted with death).