Discourse 16.11.23, 19 Uhr Forum Saloon Entry: Free

Facing Ohnmacht III

Climate and Ohnmacht

FORUM STADTPARK – Fortress Ohnmacht, Facing Ohnmacht Lecture series June – November 2023

Climate and Ohnmacht

The current mode of living in Western societies is based on outsourcing ecological and social costs, which are borne by people and nature located primarily elsewhere. Global warming, natural disaster, and precarious living and working conditions – as well as conflicts and wars over natural resources – are just some of the consequences of this exploitative and destructive economy and its social relations. The scope for action on an individual level is severely limited, even as the catastrophic scenarios of socio-ecological crises accelerate. This means that fundamentally different forms of production become all the more urgent, together with modes of living in solidarity that point beyond human existence.

Ohnmacht* paralyses. It leads to passivity and discouragement – to the point of resignation. Crisis conditions intensify both social and individual feelings and experiences of powerlessness, and through this, it becomes clear that Ohnmacht has a systemic character. The series of discussions “Facing Ohnmacht” invites a critical and emancipatory confrontation with powerlessness as a feeling, an experience, and a social symptom. The series focuses on counter-narratives, pointing to strategies and approaches that lead out of powerlessness and into empowerment.

*The German word Ohnmacht refers to being ohne Macht (without power): a state in which power is absent or lacking. To be ohnmächtig also means to have fallen unconscious. 

The event will be in German.

02.06.2023: Patriarchy and Ohnmacht
13.10.2023: Housing and Ohnmacht
14.10.2023: Workshop: Evictions. Power & powerlessness of the involved actors
16.11.2023: Climate and Ohnmacht

Curated by:
Sara T. Huber und Rivka Saltiel

Graphic by: Haras Ananas

Climate and Ohnmacht

About our guests

Climate and Ohnmacht

Shortly summarized information on the guests for Facing Ohnmacht III

Ulrich Brand is a political scientist and Professor for International Politics at the University of Vienna. He works and publishes on questions of capitalist-liberal globalization, including its critique and possibilities of political regulation, as well as on critical theory on the state, hegemony and regulation, and on international resource and environmental policy, NGOs, and social movements with a focus on Latin America. His research is anchored in the concept of the "imperial mode of living." He is a member of the editorial board of "Tagebuch. Zeitschrift für Auseinandersetzung", among others, and co-founder and board member of "Diskurs. Das Wissenschaftsnetz".

Sophie von Redecker is a PhD student in ecological agricultural sciences at the University of Kassel-Witzenhausen and a Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung scholar. Her PhD project is entitled: “Agrarian Humanities – agricultural perspectives on the socio-ecological crisis of the human-nature relationship in the so-called Anthropocene.” She uses various critical post-structuralist theories, as well as approaches from New Materialisms, to investigate hegemonic human-nature relations and anthropocentric perspectives on climate change, the environment, and nature. She is also concerned with the interface between (socio-political) movement(s) and agronomy/agriculture, and describes herself as a farming scholar activist.

Friederike Gesing is Assistant Professor at the Department of Geography and Regional Sciences at the University of Graz. Her research interests include Qualitative Environmental Studies, Ethnography, Political Ecology, Environmental Governance, More-than-Human Geographies, Science and Technology Studies (STS), Discard Studies, Climate Change and Anthropocene, and Social Science Coastal Research. She is also part of the urban HEAP (Health and Everyday Activities take Place) research group, which focuses on the interactions between everyday social life and socio-spatial and ecological environments.