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Workshop: New alliances. Academia and critical practice

1st February 2019 (10:00-17:00)
University of Potsdam, Campus Am Neuen Palais, Brandenburg
Trainers: Corinne Kaszner and Dr. Max Czollek

This one-day workshop aimed to tackle the question of alliances and critical practice within academia based on the educational concept and in-service training approach Social Justice and Diversity developed by Leah Carola Czollek, Prof. Dr. Gudrun Perko and Prof. Dr. Heike Weinbach in 2001 to analyse and tackle structural discrimination. The central aim of the workshop was a critical reflection on forms of exclusion and inequality in the academic field as well as the development of critical practices and strategies of empowerment.

The concept of Social Justice and Diversity rests on an understanding of discrimination as intersectional and structural, manifesting itself in all fields of society on an individual, cultural and institutional level. Therefore, the workshop focused on the way individual academic practice can take part in an active work against discrimination, while explicitly reflecting upon the structure of the academic field with its specific possibilities, constraints and means of communication.

After an introduction the main features of Social Justice and Diversity were explicated: the non-hierarchisation of forms of discrimination; “Verbündet-Sein” as a specific conception of alliance; the differentiation between privilege and resources when elaborating ways of overcoming discriminatory structures. The last part of the workshop was then dedicated to the development of concrete strategies where the participants were asked to reflect upon their individual academic practice.