Courses Announced for the 27th Annual Democracy & Diversity Institute in Wroclaw, Poland, July 6-22, 2018!

27th Democracy & Diversity Graduate Summer Institute
Wrocław [Vrots-love], Poland, July 6-22, 2018



Shifting Ground: The Politics of Fiction & Reality Today

We are happy to announce our 27th annual Democracy & Diversity Graduate Institute to be held at The New School summer campus in Wroclaw, Poland, July 6-22, 2018.

Widely admired as an intimate international forum for lively but rigorous debate on critical issues of democratic life, the D&D Institute brings an interdisciplinary, comparative, and highly interactive approach to the social, political, and cultural challenges facing today’s world. This year we are particularly proud to have among our faculty Professor Agnes Heller, one of the most distinguished thinkers of our time.

Enroll in 2 of the following courses and earn 6 credits:


The Time is out of Joint: Tragedy and its Absence in Our Comic/Catastrophic Times

 Agnes Heller – Professor Emerita of Philosophy, NSSR


“Europe is dead,” Philosophy, History, and Politics in the Thought of Jan Patocka

 James Dodd – Professor of Philosophy, NSSR


Democratic Crisis and the Politics of Social Media

Claire Potter – Professor of Historical Studies, NSSR



We the People: Nationalism, Populism, and the Precariousness of the Democratic Project

Elzbieta Matynia – Professor of Sociology and Liberal Studies, NSSR



This year’s courses will highlight the following important questions:


  • What are the reasons behind the absence of tragedy, as a form of art and as literary genre, in our otherwise catastrophic times?

(The Time is Out of Joint, Agnes Heller, Professor Emerita of Philosophy at the New School for Social Research, author of A Theory of Modernity)


  • What has been the role of the global digital sphere — and especially social media, with its mixture of aspirational and cynical politics – in the crisis of democracy today?  (Politics of Social Media, Claire Potter, Professor of Historical Studies, Executive Editor of Public Seminar, author and co-editor of  Doing Recent History: On Privacy, Copyright, Video Games, Institutional Review Boards, Activist Scholarship, and History That Talks Back)


  • What lessons can we can learn for today from Vaclav Havel’s “mentor,” the brilliant Czech philosopher and dissident Jan Patocka, who agitated for the renewal of the European project in the wake of the multiple catastrophes of the twentieth century?  (Europe is Dead,” James Dodd, Professor of Philosophy, author of Violence and Phenomenology)


  • What are the social factors and political forces that have facilitated the emergence of a strikingly widening phenomenon: a transition FROM democracy? What are the sources of the appeal of an illiberal order and a retreat from the intellectual legacy of the Enlightenment?  (We the People, Elzbieta Matynia, Professor of Sociology and Liberal Studies, director of TCDS, author of Performative Democracy and An Uncanny Era)


Consider joining us and earning 3 graduate credits per course.  Email us with any questions at or check our website for program updates!