2017, Wed, Jul 12

Merkur Talk: Respect! The limits to cultural appropriation

With Eva Geulen and Matthias Dell

“Should Art That Infuriates Be Removed?” asked Roberta Smith in the New York Times, when a fiery debate ensued at the presentation of Dana Schutz’s painting “Open Casket” at the 2017 Whitney Biennial. It centered on the legitimacy of cultural appropriation, but the issue also reveals debates about safe spaces, identity politics and trigger warnings. A discussion about conflicts that lead to the core of the self-concept of liberal societies.

Eva Geulen is the director of the Zentrum für Literatur- und Kulturforschung (ZfL) in Berlin and professor of the history of European culture and knowledge at the Humboldt-Universität Berlin. She was previously a professor at New York University, in Bonn and in Frankfurt (Main). She most recently published the book Aus dem Leben der Form: Goethes Morphologie und die Nager.

Matthias Dell is a freelance editor for Freitag and Deutschlandfunk Kultur. He is a media columnist for Merkur and the DLF program @mediasres. He also writes ARD Sunday evening crime show reviews on zeit.de. His book "Herrlich inkorrekt": Die Thiel-Börne-Tatorte was issued in 2012.

The discussion is moderated by Ekkehard Knörer (Merkur, editorial office)