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Field of Focus III - Funded ProjectsRecalibrating Culture

Putting the Transcultural in Perspective

Project Leader

Prof. Dr. Barbara Mittler


This project is to support the preparation for an application for a Kollegforschergruppe (KFG) at the DFG (draft application due February 15th, full application due fall of 2018). In this KFG, we set out to recalibrate notions of culture, hitherto conceived as a self-contained, and clearly separable, man-made and stable unit.

Taking a critical view of this perspective, Heidelberg developed the transcultural approach. This approach has raised crucial questions and leads us, now, to expand and critically evaluate as well as to theorize the transcultural in perspective. In doing so, we add two new dimensions to thinking about (trans- )culture that reflect some of the directions research has been taking in recent years in Heidelberg, highlighting 1. the more-than-human and the material, and 2. the contestational. 

The KFG would support 3 doctoral students in its first 4 years, working each with one of the three initiators of the group, and up to 8 post-doctoral fellowships for 1-4 years in the first phase, working with Heidelberg scholars interested in the research done at the KFG. The KFG would offer shorter and longer term fellowships (1 month to 1 year) to well-known junior and senior fellows from outside of Heidelberg (nationally and internationally) and would also invite Heidelberg colleagues to participate in the many experimental research formats and activities to be offered at the KFG, in an attempt to bring together the many different disciplines gathered in FoF3.