Call for Applications: SIEF Summer School “Trusting Resistance. New Ethnographies of Social  Movements and Alternative Economies”, Tübingen, 24-30 July 2016

Venue: Hohentübingen Castle, University of Tübingen, Germany

Convened by: Prof. Dr. Monique Scheer (Ludwig-Uhland-Institut für  Empirische Kulturwissenschaft)

Funded by: the Institutional Strategy of the University of Tübingen  (ZUK 63), the International Society for Ethnology and Folklore (SIEF),  and the CRC 923 on “Threatened Orders”

Deadline for proposal submission: March 20, 2016

This international summer school combines two highly debated topics:  trust and resistance. From protest to critical consumption, to the  do-it-yourself movement, to radical gardening or alternative health  care: when groups are formed in resistance to an ‘establishment’ or  ‘mainstream’, they often express a lack of trust in the ‘powers that  be’ – therefore, practices of mistrust seem to be constitutive for  such movements. On the other hand, within the group it is important to  establish trust in the alternative models being tried out. Thus, it  would seem that trust and mistrust operate in these cases as a dynamic  motor for change. Thinking about the conceptualization of trust and  mistrust will necessarily be part of the discussion. Is trust an  attitude, an ethic, a virtue, or a feeling, perhaps even an emotion?  From the ethnographic perspective, it makes sense to look at trust  and mistrust in connection with the practices that mobilize and  cultivate them. Thus, the summer school will also encourage the  participants to go beyond trust/mistrust to think about the role of  other feelings and attitudes important to the groups they are studying  as well. We would like to offer a space for exploring this dynamic  more deeply with PhD students and early postdocs working on research  projects in the above-mentioned areas.

We invite anyone taking an ethnographic approach to the culture of  resistance, studying social movements, political and consumer protest,  activism in its many forms, to participate in this summer school.  European ethnologists, folklorists, anthropologists, cultural studies  scholars, sociologists, historians, and political scientists are all  welcome to apply. The focus is on looking at trust/mistrust at the  micro-level of everyday life and social interactions. This includes  not only attention to the practical dimensions of doings and sayings,  thinking and feelings, but also considering the importance of material  artifacts, sensory impressions, sounds, images, performances, rituals,  spaces, and places. Participants at any stage of their research –  including beginning PhD students – will have an opportunity to present  work in progress and to discuss central research issues. To ensure an  open and collaborative learning environment, the number of  participants will be limited to a maximum of 25.

The summer school offers a diverse program with theoretical,  empirical, and methodological sections. Senior scholars who have made  important contributions in this field have been invited for keynote  lectures on theoretical and historical issues: Martin Hartmann (U  Luzern), Helena Flam (U Leipzig), Klaus Schönberger (U Klagenfurt),  and Cristina Grasseni (U Utrecht). Their lectures will be complemented  by sessions of theoretical discussion with each of them. Alongside  them, smaller working groups led by advanced postdoctoral scholars  will connect the theoretical issues with participants’ research  projects. A field trip to local sites of resistance and protest will  facilitate discussions and camaraderie. Finally, an advanced methods  workshop will focus on issues of trust and mistrust in the field,  between interlocutors and researchers.

The working language is English. Participants can earn a maximum of 6  ECTS points. The summer school will be held at the University of  Tübingen, Ludwig-Uhland-Institut für Empirische Kulturwissenschaft in  the beautiful Hohentübingen Castle.

Please apply by sending a short CV and an abstract describing your  research project and how it relates to the issue of trust/mistrust  (approx. 500 words) by March 20, 2016. Please send your applications  to summerschool(at)

Successful applicants will be notified by email no later than April 15.

Fee, Accomodation, Travel
The registration fee for participants is 30 €. Participants are  expected to take part in the full duration of the summer school. We  are able to provide accommodation (double rooms, incl. breakfast) and  lunch snack, but we cannot reimburse travel expenses. Please inquire  at your university to apply for travel funding.

Please feel free to contact us for specific questions about the  program or application.

Elisabeth Socha, M.A.
Ludwig-Uhland-Institut für Empirische Kulturwissenschaft
Burgsteige 11 (Schloss), 72070 Tübingen