Crossing Borders – Border Crossings

Forced Exile as a Form of Life

Lecture and workshop with Didier Fassin

Lecture and Workshop with Didier Fassin (Princeton/Paris)

Lecture: Forced Exile as a Form of Life

Donnerstag/Thursday, 10.1.2019, 18-20h

Hausvogteiplatz 5-7, 10117 Berlin, Room 0007

Institutskolloquium, Institut für Europäische Ethnologie, HU Berlin

Opening with a tragic episode on the Mediterranean, the lecture will first address two questions in reference to Arendt’s reflection on human rights: first, the shift from humanitarian reason to securitarian order in the recent period; second, the response of civil society, including via civil disobedience  but also more mundane actions. Offering then a broader perspective on forced exile, it will analyze it as a form of life, combining a theoretical discussion of Wittgenstein, Canguilhem and Agamben, and an ethnographic research conducted in France and South Africa. From these various perspectives, the fate of these transnational nomads and the way they are treated shed a crude light on the contemporary world.


Workshop Borders of Humanitarianism

Workshop Freitag/Friday, 11.1.2019, 9:30-16:00

Institut für Europäische Ethnologie, HU Berlin

Didier Fassin is the James Wolfensohn Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, and a Director of Studies at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris. Anthropologist, sociologist and physician, he has conducted research in Senegal, South Africa, Ecuador, and France. Author of sixteen books, he was the first social scientist to receive the Nomis Distinguished Scientist Award. He recently authored  Humanitarian Reason. A Moral History of the Present (UC Press, 2011), Enforcing Order. An Ethnography of Urban Policing (Polity, 2013), Prison Worlds. An Ethnography of the Carceral Condition (Polity, 2016), Life. A Critical User’s Manual (Polity, 2018), The Will to Punish (Oxford University Press, 2018) - the latter two being translated in German at Suhrkamp: Das Leben. Eine kritische Gebrauchsanweisung and Der Wille zum Strafen.


Please consult the whole programme of the lecture series „Ethnographies of the Contemporary: Perspektiven und Positionen einer Anthropologie des Politischen“ by following this link: