Too often does the idea of Europe get mixed up with the Euroland, the world of Brussels with its EU guidelines and directives. Too frequently are the discussions about European identity focussed on the past, on beastial wars and intellectual feats. Seldom do they revolve around what Europe actually means, here and now, to the younger generation. At the discussion panel A Dispute over Europe, the French philosopher Camille de Toledo had already castigated his contemporaries' vision of Europe. How can a modern idea of Europe ever spring to life from discourses which are entirely stuck in the past -- either in the 18th century of the humanistic Enlightenment or in the 20th century of ideological nationalism?
Since naturally the castigation of traditional modalities of thought doesn't suffice to create a new Europe, the European Society of Authors, whose cofounders include Camille de Toledo, is organising a series of events under the telling name SECESSION. Starting in September 2014, the Secessionists will attempt to newly think of and fashion Europe as, "a place for translation, migration and hybridization." Since the host of EU politicians and bureaucrats already have enough to say, it will be the artists, authors and philosophers who will be given the stage at SECESSION. After all, relevant visions for a better society are more commonly drawn up by poets than paragraph-bound civil servants.
At the first SECESSION event in Berlin on September 23, 2014 at 7pm, Camille de Toledo, Dorian Astor, Christos Chrissopoulos, François Cusset, György Dragomá, Juan Francisco Ferré, Katja Hensel, Cécile Wajsbrot and other European poets and thinkers will read and speak about a new Europe. An exhibition at the Institut français (September 16 - October 10, 2014), gathering imaginary cards and installations from artists across Europe under the title "Deconstructing borders for a migrant Europe", will accompany the event.
What? SECESSION EUROPE
When? September 23, 2014, 7pm at Heimathafen (Neukölln)
Who? Everyone is welcome. Admission is free.
Don't be Scared of the European Dream
In September and October 2014, SECESSION will imagine and discuss a Europe after the reign of the bureaucrats. What would it look like and what roles do artists, writers and translators have? Since Cafébabel Berlin is convinced that Europe represents teeming diversity and not just bloodless, administrative insanity, we'll naturally be in attendance as an official media partner. As always, more info on Facebook and Twitter.