Transregional Center for Democratic Studies

Reclaiming Democratic Performatives: TCDS IN 2019

The valiant theme of our last Democracy & Diversity Institute was further echoed in an array of events and activities of this this politically challenging year.  It demonstrated both continuous TCDS’s engagement in illuminating the critical issues of our embattled world and the commitment of peripatetic TCDS Director Prof. Elzbieta Matynia to addressing the many current challenges to democracy, conspiracies past and present, and emerging rays of hope. Here is a sampling:

January – May

NEW YORK: Global Dialogues Fellowship Program: A Semester-Long Research Program in Critical Concerns of Democratic Culture & Governance

2019 Topic: Public Space, Media and Democratic Discourse

Meet the Fellows!















NEW YORK: Denial of Rights. The story of the Manipur Nation: An address by Binalakshmi Nepram, indigenous scholar, writer, and civil rights activist from Manipur (India), 2018 Fellow of the New University in Exile Consortium.















NEW YORK: The 2019 Courage in Public Scholarship Award: Jan T. Gross, distinguished historian and author, Professor of History Emeritus, Princeton University.

This annual tribute to exceptionally audacious thinkers, teachers, and doers was in 2019 part of the Centennial of The New School. Watch the ceremony and lecture here.


















NEW YORK: “How to Kill a Democracy,” Elzbieta Matynia’s contribution to the Spring 2019 issue, “Political Transitions Revisited,” of Social Research.














NEW YORK: Emergent Alternative Imaginaries – The Global Dialogues Fellows’ conference, featuring a keynote address by Aryeh Neier, American human rights activist co-founder of Human Rights Watch, former president of George Soros’s Open Society Institute.


GDAŃSK: Elzbieta Matynia, speaker in the Debate: We Europeans: Do we still feel the commonality of our History?  European Solidarity Centre, Gdańsk; International Citizen’s Forum (Anniversary of first democratic elections in Post-Soviet Central Europe (1989).

Photo: with Jacek Koltan, Deputy Director for Research European Solidarity Centre in Gdańsk, with the book on the New School!












KRAKOW: The End of History Revisited, Keynote address by Elzbieta Matynia at the 12th International Conference of Global Studies, organized by Common Ground Publishing, and held in Krakow.



WROCLAW: 28th Democracy & Diversity Graduate Summer Institute: Reclaiming Democratic Performatives: Actors, Spaces, Processes

July 9-25, 2019




















KOSOVO: The Killing of Dialogue, a public lecture organized by Station-Center for Contemporary Arts in Pristina, Kosovo.





















NEW YORK: The annual Vaclav Havel Library Foundation Disturbing the Peace Award to a Courageous Writer at Risk, went this year to a Turkish Writer and activist, Aslı Erdoğan. Elzbieta Matynia was a member of the Jury.














NEW YORK: Adam Michnik: Degree Re-Conferral and Lecture: 30 Years Ago: A Time of Joy and Hope Centennial event and Democracy Seminar Inaugural Meeting

WARSAW: Is Liberal Democracy Already History, Keynote lecture by Elzbieta Matynia at the International Conference “Transformation in Central-Eastern Europe 1989-2019: Success & Failures”, University of Warsaw.















NEW YORK:  “Bogdan’s Journey” Truth Has to Be Told With Love: Film Screening  and Q&A with protagonist, at the New School for Social Research. 














NEW YORK: Political Transitions Revisited, Elzbieta Matynia participant in the panel presentation organized by the Center for Public Scholarship, The New School.

ANN ARBOR: Democracy as Conspiracy: Reversals in Poland and South Africa, presentation by Elzbieta Matynia at the conference “Historical and Contemporary Expressions of Populism in South Africa”, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.












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