On 25 and 26 September, the Université libre de Bruxelles hosted the workshop “Legacies of Anarchism. Interdisciplinary Visions”, organised by Petra James, Denis Ioffe and Sybil Raisz (Modernitas, ULB). The event brought together many specialists, several of whom have links with the Fondation Wiener-Anspach: our Fellow Edward Lee-Six, PhD in French and English Literature (University of Cambridge), who gave a presentation on Émile Verhaeren (the focus of his current research project at ULB); 2021-2022 Alumna Kamila Kocialkowska, PhD in Art History (University of Cambridge), with a talk titled “Kruchenykh’s Explosive Texts: Elemental Anarchy in the Gelatine Press and the Gelatine Bomb”; and Patrick McGuinness (Faculty of Medieval and Modern Languages, University of Oxford), promoter with Stefano Maria Evangelista (Faculty of English, University of Oxford) and Clément Dessy (Faculty of Letters, Translation and Communication, ULB) of the FWA-supported research project “Symbolism and Decadence as World Literature“. Petra James is the promoter of another ULB-Oxford research project supported by the FWA for the period 2022-2024, “When Rural meets Urban: Towards a Cultural History of Modernisms in Bohemia 1895-1925”.


Our workshop dedicated to the legacies of anarchism is framed by the general questions of differentiated experience of time, progress and modernity globally in various geographical spaces (the period that we investigate, starting in late 1860s, is the period of the first phase of globalization) but also by various social, ethnic and gender groups. We are keen to discuss the complex dynamics between modernist aesthetics and politics of that time, between l’art pour l’art and l’art social (see for example Poetry and Radical Politics in fin de siècle France, Patrick McGuinness 2015). The general discussions of the role of the state in society are one of the crucial political questions of the period as is the role of artists and intellectuals in society. All this pressing questions have been addressed by the first anarchist thinkers globally.

More information is available on the website of the Maison des Sciences humaines.
Contact: Sybil.Raysz@ulb.be