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CRISIS/ACADEMIA
Summer School by IGITI HSE and DOXA
1-4 July, 2019 (Moscow)



Summer School will be devoted to the analysis of changes in the university space over the past few decades. The ideological changes in the last decades, largely caused by the collapse of the bipolar world order, contributed to the revision of the idea of the academy as an instance of truth and trust and led to the crisis of the university idea. At the same time, all participants of the university have been subjected to the precarization of academic work and to the marketization of higher education and of science, which caused major changes in the functioning of the university space.

The starting point for the summer school is the question how universities and academics balance in the process of knowledge production between academic achievement, research autonomy and market / state orientation. We will focus on the Russian context, which has undergone significant changes over the last two decades, but we will also make a comparison with the post-Soviet experience and the experience of Western countries.

To do this, we will focus on following questions: What role do academic intellectuals play in modern societies, and how has this role changed over the past two decades? What are the models and patterns of academic structures, and how have they changed in the recent years? (here we will focus on different types of hierarchies, both between staff and between students and teachers) What is the role of student knowledge and student voice in the academy? What impact do different hierarchical models of universities have on students? In what form do safe and free spaces exist and can exist for students? Given the growing importance of non-academic knowledge, how did the relations between academic and non-academic knowledge change in the recent years, and what is the potential of the dialogue between these two knowledge forms?

School is going to be held on 1-4 July, 2019 in HSE in Moscow.
SESSIONS AND SPEAKERS




In our Summer School we want to counter the vertical teaching and focus on discussion formats based on preparation within groups. Each participant will be assigned to one of the six groups, which, together with invited guests, will prepare presentations. Group work will begin already before the summer school (foreign guests will participate via skype in pre-meetings). Results from the group work will be published in DOXA journal.
Session 1. (Contemporary) critique of (contemporary) university
This group will look at the changing topics of critique of the academia over the years and will try to detect long duree trends and situated developments. It combines historical perspective with sociological one, and by looking at seemingly isolated case studies formulate key problems academia as institution has been facing.

Speakers:

Jana Bacevic — researcher in social theory and the politics of knowledge production, a Research Associate in Critical Studies of Higher Education at the Culture, Politics and Global Justice research cluster (Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge).

Jan Surman — cultural historian of science, researcher in history of Central/Eastern European universities, research fellow in IGITI HSE.

Alexander Rusanov — historian of universities and academic education, specialist in the history of medieval universities and the Iberian peninsula, research fellow in IGITI HSE.
Session 2. Who is Academia?
This section will look at the key critical issues of the contemporary academia, with key focus on Russia, and the forms of cooperation and conflict within the academic sphere. We will discuss the main actors of academia (students, lecturers, professors, administrative staff), focusing on the communication and miscommunication between them. The aim of this group is to discuss the tensions between various groups within the academia and discuss them basing on the background of the current neo-liberal working ethics and work practice, which promotes insecurity to facilitate control and prevent cooperation.

Speakers:

Armen Aramyan — political philosopher, student of 'Political Philosophy' programme at MSSES/Manchester University, editor of 'University' Section in independent student magazine DOXA.

Alex Pleshkov — philosopher, researcher in temporality of contemporary academia, vice-director of IGITI HSE.
Session 3. Doing Gender (Studies) in the Post-Soviet Academia
In the recent decades the existence and importance of gender studies have been the issue of tensions within the academia, both creating unexpected alliances and breaking previously formed ones. This session will discuss the recent past and future of gender studies in the post-Soviet space by looking at conflicts about the importance of gender studies, practices of gender studies at the crossroad of academia and public sphere, pressure groups for and against as well as experiences with leading and participating in gender studies programs/courses. The main question will be how Gender Studies resonate with the gender contract (societal, but also institutional ones), and which prospects it has in the current gender economy.

Speakers:


Ella Rossman — feminist activist, teacher at the School of Cultural Sciences HSE, researcher of gender sociology and history of USSR.

Frank Karioris — Visiting Lecturer of Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies at the University of Pittsburgh and at American University of Central Asia, founder of the first academic program in Gender Studies in Central Asia, ex-Director of the Center for Critical Gender Studies.
Session 4. Academia and the Public Sphere
With the rise of new media and the crisis of authority of intellectuals, academia faces a process of diminishing authority. While in the Western Europe Science Marches were supposed to counter this phenomenon, many stood sceptical to them, as they referred to certain ideals, like truth, which scholars and intellectuals abandoned long ago. So what is academia good for, when it cannot produce truth anymore? What does and can it produce? What are the new sustainable ideals academia could hold to in the future and how to formulate them? What are the new actors who produce truth instead, and how should academics and intellectuals deal with them?

Speakers:

Mark Carrigan — digital sociologist at the University of Cambridge and The Sociological Review Foundation, expert on the role of social media within higher education

Polina Kolozaridi — sociologist, lecturer at HSE, coordinator of the Club for Internet and Society Enthusiasts.
Session 5. Non-Standard Academia
Academia is changing, but one often has the impression that it is like a turtle in a middle of a highway. Still, the interest in the intersection between the academia and the public sphere is growing and new formats arise, which signalises both that the old formats do not work anymore, and that there is a need of something new, which goes way beyond the idea of "science popularisation" or "enlightening the people". In this section we will discuss new forms of academic and intellectual engagement and the question how this forms can produce new social forms of mutual learning and thus new knowledge.

Speakers:

Anke Hennig — theorist of 21st century literature and visual culture, she is chairing the international research group Retro-Formalism, co-founder of the trans-national research platform Speculative Poetics.

TBA
Session 6. 'Wild' Academia
This group will be focused on creating a multimedia project about the process of transformation of the Soviet university to a Post-Soviet one during the period of 1980-2000s. We will try to work as journalists and anthropologists in order to create an Internet-project about this transition, while gathering empirical data, such as: interviews with people who used to teach 'scientific communism' — where are they now and what happened to them? We will attempt to find out how the independent publishing houses and media were created, or how during the 1990s academic texts were chosen to translation. The participants of the group will be able to suggest their own topic, which they are interested in.


Speakers:

Tania Uskova — historian, student of 'Public History' programme at MSSES/Manchester University

TBA
PARTICIPATION IN THE SCHOOL
In your application, please tell us about your research and / or practical experience, and the reasons for which you want to participate in the school. Also, please indicate which group you would like to participate in.

Apply to the form by link. Deadline for applications - April 14, 2019.

Organizers cannot cover the cost of travel and accommodation for the summer school, but can help with the invitations for the Russian visa.

Overall amount of participants: 35.
_____________ORGANIZERS



The school is organized by the Poletayev Institute for Theoretical and Historical Studies in the Humanities, National Research University Higher School of Economics, and the independent student magazine DOXA.

Organising Committee:

Armen Aramyan - MA in Sociology (Manchester University), MA in Political Philosophy (Shaninka), editor of the "University" section of DOXA magazine;

Jan Surman - PhD, Research Fellow at the Poletayev Institute for Theoretical and Historical Studies in the Humanities, National Research University Higher School of Economics, cultural historian of science.
Contact us with any questions: doxa.fgn@gmail.com (subject 'Summer School').

Background photo: University building destroyed in earthquake in Mexico (photo by Anastasia Sinitsyna).