Tuesday 7 February
Plural and Shared: The sociology of a cosmopolitan world
The next seminar of WIPSS in its 20th anniversary year will be on Tuesday 7 February at 180ohrs in LT2, Francis Ebejer Hall, and will be given by Prof. Vincenzo Ciccheli of the University of Paris Sorbonne. Prof. Cicchelli writes:
‘We live in a globalized world: a world where a young person in Burkina Faso can identify with interstellar Star Wars heroes, and in which a New York trader drinks the same Starbucks coffee as his Taiwanese counterpart. How is human experience being shaped in a such world? In an attempt to answer this question, an investigation has been carried out, based on two scales of analysis usually used separately by studies on cosmopolitan issues: the scale of the cosmopolitan world and its global cultural dynamics; and the scale of everyday life and ordinary socialization to otherness. This two-fold perspective constitutes the innovative approach of this presentation. The cultural boundaries that serve to define and unite identities, social groups and communities are becoming blurred, open and porous in some cases; in other cases, however, these boundaries are becoming increasingly closed and rigid.
Society is witnessing the phenomenon of identitarian closure and the rise of xenophobic feelings and discourse, as evidenced by the return of anti-Semitism and the upsurge of Islamophobia. Those who perceive themselves as ‘losers’ in the global economic competition, as being excluded from wealth distribution, are often tempted by identitarian closure as a fallback position. It is imperative to explore the shape taken by the opening and closing of boundaries at both the macro and micro levels. Such as it is presented in my book, Pluriel et commun: Sociologie d’un monde cosmopolite (SciencesPo Les Presses, 2016), this is the contribution of cosmopolitan sociology. As in my book, this seminar paper argues that as an extension of classic sociology and as a core concept of the sociological tradition, the perspective of cosmopolitan socialization can generate new research on the lived experiences of cosmopolitanism.’
Vincenzo Cicchelli is associate professor at University Paris Descartes, Research Fellow at Gemass (CNRS/Paris Sorbonne). He currently is the series editor of “Youth in a Globalizing World” (Brill Publishing, Leyden/Boston). His primary research and teaching interests are in global studies, cosmopolitanism, international comparisons, and youth conditions in the Euromediterranean area. Among his books: (with Sylvie Octobre), L’amateur cosmopolite. Goûts et imaginaires juvéniles à l’ère de la globalisation (2017); Pluriel et commun. Sociologie d’un monde cosmopolite (2016) ; (with Cotesta V. and Nocenzi M., eds), Global Society, Cosmopolitanism and Human Rights, Cambridge Scholar Publishing (2013); L’autonomie des jeunes, La documentation Française (2013); L’esprit cosmopolite. Voyages de formation des jeunes en Europe, Presses de SciencesPo (2012).
Tuesday 7 February, 1800-1900hrs, followed by discussion. In Francis Ebejer Hall (Lecture Theatre 2), upstairs in the block just below the Library. The public is cordially welcome.
Convenors: Paul Clough, Peter Mayo, and Michael Briguglio