Seggau, Leibnitz, Austria

Radical (Dis)Engagement: State - Society - Religion

when 30 June 2019 - 13 July 2019
language English
duration 2 weeks
credits 6 EC
fee EUR 1500

Radical (Dis)Engagement: State – Society – Religion

Constant political uncertainties. Climate change. Demographic transformation. Continual re-thinking of societal coherence in times of diversity. New technologies that will redefine the notion of work. All these challenges are often met with reactions ranging from resignation to proactive ignorance, both on the individual and wider social, cultural, and national levels. The lack of knowledge and tolerance increasingly erupt in aggression and violence against others, taking the place of critical reflection and civic engagement. Trust in institutional structures, political procedures and information (re)sources has been replaced by mistrust and disengagement. The belief in an open and tolerant society and our individual agency has been undermined.

In order to develop strategies and methods to meet the immense challenges of our time, this summer school suggests engaging in academic contemplation and interdisciplinary exchange. Analyzing both engagement as well as disengagement in terms of the relationship of the individual to social, political, and economic structures offers us the opportunity of developing disruptive intellectual approaches and ideas, as we can gain insights into political, social, economic, and cultural forces that make us believe that the challenges we face are essential, natural, and inevitable. Such analysis offers us not only an understanding of our own alliances on an individual, a regional, national, and global level, but also the possibility of moving from a passive position to active involvement in transformation processes in order to become agents of change by an authentic reformulation of our identities.

An analysis of present and past (dis)engagement with state, society, and religion, will offer insights into the dynamics and structures that govern us as individuals. The summer school will provide more questions than answers, and will allow us to investigate the different approaches to the definitions of state, society, and religion, and their interconnectedness. Focusing on the emphasis areas of the University of Graz – South Eastern Europe and North, Central and South America – this program will offer a basis for discussing global and continental challenges as well as opportunities that change entails.

The Graz International Summer School Seggau 2019 consists of morning lectures, panel discussions etc. In the afternoon, students participate in their chosen seminar module. They can choose among the modules listed below:

1.Histories and Politics of State, Nation, and Identity
2. Media and Crises of Democracy
3. Economics and Inequalities
4. Sustainability and Intergenerational Ethics
5. Jewish Culture and Modernity
6. Ageing, Communication, and Technologies
7. Narrative-Based Research / Research-Based Life Writing

Course leader

The Graz International Summer School Seggau is organized by the University of Graz in cooperation with the Commission of the Bishops' Conferences of the European Community (COMECE) and the Diocese Graz-Seckau. The Office of International Relations

Target group

The Graz International Summer School Seggau is designed for internationally oriented, highly motivated students from all disciplines, who wish to deepen their understanding of current European and international affairs by studying and discussing global developments and challenges within the context of transformation processes and demographic change reflecting aspects of individual, social, political, religious, cultural, literary, regional, economic, cohort and national identities.

Course aim

To ensure quality education with variety of seminars and morning lectures through international participants,
Provide equal opportunities for students in presenting their work (possibility of presenting a scholarly poster, science slam, publish in the GUSEGG publication etc.),
Developing critical thinking of students and building a dialogue,
Encouraging working together and providing input from respective fields (e.g. dot group work),
Creating partnerships and networks between professors, students and other GUSEGG Alumni,
Shaping profiles of young leaders of tomorrow.

Credits info

6 EC
6 ECTS (for active participation and a seminar paper)

Fee info

EUR 1500: This is a subsidized price, and it covers course costs, tuition, room & board (double, triple or quad rooms, 3 meals per day) for the entire two weeks, and the excursion to Graz.
EUR 0: Some full scholarships are available.


Scholarships (full and partial) available, please see the summer school website.