2013, Thu, Nov 14

The Global Prayers Congress - Eröffnung

Faith in the City

The city is not an a-religious space. This is demonstrated by all of the insights gained through the art and research project Global Prayers - Redemption and Liberation in the City since 2009. Rather, it is in the global metropolises that new religious movements are finding the fertile cultural, political, and economic ground in which to take root. In the dynamic life of the city, religion, too, is in constant motion. New religious groups are subverting the traditional order and hierarchies of urban society. Powerful religious economies and a new kind of religious mainstream are establishing themselves in the heart of the city.

In its concluding event, Global Prayers will set its analyses within current theoretical and methodological approaches aimed at the postcolonialization and decentering of both urban studies and the arts. In discussions, presentations, film as well as spatial installations, academics and artists will explore current manifestations of the religious in the global city. Under the catchphrase "decolonizing research," they will illuminate pitfalls, methods, and theoretical and practical implications of academic and artistic research. A special focus will be placed on the performance of artistic research.


The exhibition "Speaking in Tongues" by the Dutch artist Aernout Mik will open the congress. The work sets new kinds of religious communities opposite the large secular congregations of the business world.

The publication Global Prayers by Jochen Becker, Katrin Klingan, Stephan Lanz, and Kathrin Wildner (eds.) is based on the critical engagement of an international network of researchers as well as artists, focusing on diverse urban assemblages and religious communities.

With Sammy Baloji, Mustapha Adebayo Bello, Filip de Boeck, Ayşe Çavdar, Rima Chahrour, Köken Ergun, Encarnación Gutiérrez Rodríguez, Mona Harb, Stefan Heidenreich, Christine Hentschel, Marloes Janson, Grada Kilomba, Mikhail Lylov, Elke Marhöfer, Christian Nowatzky, Martijn Oosterbaan, Peter Ott, Jennifer Robinson, Sandra Schäfer, AbdouMaliq Simone, Lokman Slim, Eda Ünlü-Yücesoy among others.


Initiated by metroZones in 2009, Global Prayers is carried out in cooperation with Haus der Kulturen der Welt and the European University Viadrina. Global Prayers - Redemption and Liberation in the City is a research project at the Forum Transregionale Studien. In the framework of the Forum, Global Prayers receives essential funding from the State of Berlin. globalprayers.info