Klagenfurt a.W., Austria

Global Public Life

blended course
when 11 September 2023 - 16 September 2023
language English
duration 1 week
credits 5 EC
fee EUR 500

The inaugral Theory, Culture & Society Summer School provides a unique opportunity to join a community of scholars for an intensive study & cultural programme. Participants will be able to:

- explore contemporary critical debates and perspectives;

- enhance skills and literacies for research and publishing;

- share in a rich, cultural programme.

Situated in the Austrian Alps, the University of Klagenfurt provides an inspiring location for a diversity of scholars to come together from across disciplines and geographies, to work with the experienced editorial teams of the journals Theory, Culture & Society and Body & Society, alongside invited speakers and guest, and staff from the University of Klagenfurt from a broad disciplinary spectrum (Media & Communications, Cultural Studies, Sociology, Philosophy, Slavonic Studies and Robert Musil Institute for Literary Research), who will be on hand to discuss your ongoing research projects.

The intensive course spanning 5 days, for which 5 ECTS credits are awarded, is divided into four strands:

Critical Debates. Building on the recent Special Issue of Theory, Culture & Society, ‘A New Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere?’ (edited by Martin Seeliger Sebastian Sevignani; and including a new contemporary reflection by Jürgen Habermas), the Summer School seeks to explore a wide range of issues that relate to the public sphere, including: Digital publics, Cosmopolitan publics, Aesthetic cosmopolitanism, Social media, Images and screens in public space, Intimacy in public, Civility in the age of anger, Alternative publics, Secrecy and counterpublics, Decolonialising public space, Public life and the posthuman.

Scholarly Apparatus. The 40-year history of the journal has witnessed many shifts and trends in research. Workshops will explore the current contexts of research, addressing the changing ‘scholarly apparatus,’ mapping new ways of working and post-media literacies. Issues to be addressed include:Digitalization of academic life, Editing and publishing, Artificial Intelligence, Post-university tendencies, Media and new media literacies, Postmedia practices.

Work-in-Progress: A special dedicated series invites participants to present on aspects of their own work, with a view to supporting publication and public engagement. There will also be round table and poster sessions along with opportunities for informal discussion with speakers, faculty and participants. Time is also afforded for writing, giving participants an opportunity for quiet study, but within a shared environment.

Global Public Life: Building on the journal’s dedicated annual section, ‘Global Public Life’, the Summer School presents a cultural strand of film screenings, engagement with artists, media practices and guest speakers. Held during the evenings, these events provide a relaxed atmosphere, allowing for speculative debate and shared reflections. The programme is also supplemented with a day trip into the mountains.

Course leader

Mike Featherstone (Goldsmiths College London)
Rainer Winter (University of Klagenfurt)

Target group

a diversity of scholars coming from different disciplines in the social sciences and cultural studies with an interest in critical social and cultural theory

Course aim

- explore contemporary critical debates and perspectives;

- enhance skills and literacies for research and publishing;

- share in a rich, cultural programme.

Fee info

EUR 500: The fee covers all seminars, workshops and cultural programme, as well as lunch and refreshments over 5 days.


4 travel bursaries (500 Euro) will be provided based on the quality of individual applications and with attention given to supporting diversity. To be eligible for consideration for the travel bursary, you will need to submit your application by 30 June.