Kerem Öktem: Time of monsters? Geographies of fear in Europe and its borderlands

Open to the Public
Nador u. 9, Monument Building
Wednesday, April 6, 2016 - 3:00pm
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Wednesday, April 6, 2016 - 3:00pm to 4:30pm

The keynote lecture of the Graduate Network Conference at Central European University is delivered by professor Kerem Öktem, our distinguished guest speaker from the Centre for South-East European Studies - University of Graz.

Professor Öktem, an expert on modern Turkey, will present a lecture with the title: 

Time of monsters? Geographies of fear in Europe and its borderlands

A quarter century after Francis Fukuyama’s The End of History and the Last Man we seem to have reached the end of a neoliberal interregnum. The European Union was one of the key protagonists of this liberal promise, if with a European twist: Supra-national statehood and neo-liberal growth, counterbalanced by generous social welfare, liberal democracy and multi-cultural identity politics. EU enlargement in Eastern Europe appeared as a success of transition to this model. It was also the height of European power in Turkey, a country that was ready to follow suit with democratic reform throughout much of the lates 1990s and early 2000s. Now, after the European crisis, the Greek meltdown, the refugee crisis, the Arab Spring, ISIS, and the Syrian War, little of this promise remains. We are walking through the ruins of a European dream.

In this lecture, Kerem Öktem will explore the rise of European power and the monsters the current fall has brought to the stage in Europe and in its most significant borderland country, Turkey. Mapping the synchronicity of state failure in the Middle East, rising right-wing racism in Europe and Turkey's authoritarian turn, he will examine in particular the case of academic freedoms in Turkey and its impact on the long-term goal of an open society. 

The lecture is open to the general public, but is tied to registration at