Area I: The Politics of Anxiety

From historical and contemporary perspectives, the area explores political, economic, social, and cultural conditions, with emphasis on (in)equality discourses and practices; representations of power, hierarchies, and identities, and debates on „emergency politics“, societal deconstruction and reconstruction.  It addresses these topics from diverse perspectives, such as gender; politics; the environment; memory and history; civil society; and multiculturalism. The research area includes two themes:

 

THEME 1: CONCEPTIONS OF DIFFERENCES AND RENEGOTIATIONS OF EQUALITY

Various empirical and theoretical methods are used to analyze leveling and pluralistic discourses, focusing on their cultural, social and political manifestations and their transformative potential.  Special emphasis is on: (a) the concepts of (in)equality and difference; (b) gender and sexual violence; (c) feminist resistance strategies; (d) intersectionality, power hierarchies, and individual and collective identities; (e) discrimination and socio-cultural contexts. Another focal point is to address the political practice of gender equality and human rights from a broad perspective. This includes the study of government policies, political and social movements and civil society.

 

THEME 2: SOCIETAL AND POLITICAL RUPTURES: PAST IDEOLOGIES, THE POLITICS OF MEMORY AND DEMOCRATIC RENEWAL

The focus is on how societies deal with crises in the spheres of the political, cultural, economic, social, and environmental. When applicable Iceland is used as a case study within a larger transnational comparative framework. Areas of emphasis are: (a) the revival of nationalism, the rise of populism and the politics of immigration; (b) emergency politics and “states of exceptions”; (c) governance and institutional discourses and practices; (d) the politics of resistance in an “age of anger”; (e) theories of  democracy, collective decision-making, and political processes; (f) cultural and political memory; (g) configurations and reconfigurations of historical and national identities within transnational frameworks and social processes, such as Nordic collaboration and deviations, Europeanization and de-Europeanization.