The basic aim of the research core area
The research core area draws together research going on at various faculties at the University of Graz dealing in the broadest sense with the specific culturality of Europe. The particularities of this historically determined, yet ambiguous culturality are characterized on the one hand by their openness, flexibility and dynamism, on the other hand by their attempt to partly distinguish themselves from everything that is perceived as non-European. In this context, Europe represents not only a space to be defined (albeit with difficulty) in geographic, political and economic terms, but also a discursive figure. Implicitly and explicitly connected to this discursive figure of Europe are questions about the form and the claim of very different identities, including those outside Europe. In order to understand these constellations synchronically and diachronically, complex material, visual, written and performative forms of expression from the realms of religion, law, science and education, and from everyday practice and structures of lifeworlds, will be researched at an interdisciplinary level – with special attention to the changing relationships between local, regional, national and supranational factors. Finally, beyond the analysis of the mythological, metaphorical and discursive potential of this space, a scientific analysis of Europe is necessarily also connected to a confrontation with the history of its political power and violence.
Accompanying the many individual projects and activities participating in the research core area, some of which are funded by third parties, are regular lectures, conferences. workshops and research colloquiums, which are open to all. The promotion of young academics is demonstrated through the close involvement of doctoral candidates and post-docs.