The European Union was described by Jacques Delors as an unidentified
political object and by Jose Manuel Barroso as the first non-Imperial
empire. The descriptors assigned to the European Union are creative and
diverse yet the agreement on what is the actual shape that the EU is
taking is by no means an easy one to be achieved. Historical choices
shaped and reshaped the size and functioning of the EU while the goal of
an emerging ‘ever closer union’ is still in search for the paths of
real and not ideal accomplishment. The Euroacademia International
Conference ‘The European Union and the Politicization of Europe’ aims to
survey some of these current debates and addresses once more the
challenges of the EU polity in a context of multiple crises that
confronted Europe in recent years.
The panel “Art as cultural diplomacy” seeks papers that explore art (in
its broadest definition) as an instrument of cultural diplomacy. In the
context of multiple crises confronting Europe in recent years, how have
the arts contributed to the politicization of Europe? The Institute
for Cultural Diplomacy (ICD) was founded in Berlin in 1999. The
dynamic, non-profit organization casts the arts in an optimistic light,
“as instrumental in shaping the tone and nature of intercultural
relations.” But its potential “to raise awareness of different
cultures, promote social cohesion, and strengthen intercultural
relations, is the subject of little research and analysis, and is
consistently undervalued.” To bridge this gap ICD created the program
Art as Cultural Diplomacy (ACD).
The panel intends to assess the viability of programs such as ACD and
other similar efforts and the EU’s goal of unification. It seeks to
combine a wide interdisciplinary spectrum of perspectives and questions
in order to discuss the different ways art can be used to establish,
develop, and sustain productive relations between EU countries,
potential EU candidate countries, and other stakeholders in
international relations. Some examples of topics include:
• How can art serve as a neutral platform for exchange to promote dialogue and understanding between foreign states?
• How has/can it be employed as a vehicle for facilitating EU cohesion
that is at once inter-culturally flexible and cohesive enough to
project a unifying identity?
• How has/can public policy and other stakeholders craft a framework to
measure the degrees of difference between art as instrument of cultural
diplomacy or propaganda?
• Is it relevant to consider the concept of E-Diplomacy—that is the
digital revolution and the emergence of social media as platforms for
art to communicate across social, cultural, and national boundaries?
• How can growing international perspectives/methodologies in the field of art history be mobilized toward cultural diplomacy?
• Analysis of the debates surrounding the role of art as a tool in the
field of public or cultural diplomacy. Is art only viable when it is
free of dominant powers, such as government control? If so, how can
free, independent art be identified and in what ways can it have a
• Consideration of European "culture" and "identity" and how these terms are used and understood currently.
• Assessment of the role that culture plays in current international relations and the process of globalization.
• Challenges of the complex relationship between culture, international relations, and globalization in the coming decades.
Please submit abstracts of less than 300 words by September 25, 2011 to firstname.lastname@example.org