RTG 2130/1: Minor Cosmopolitanisms


The RTG minor cosmopolitanisms works to establish new ways of studying and understanding the cosmopolitan project beyond its Eurocentric legacies. It attempts to overcome a divide between ‘major’ sociological and philosophical readings of cosmopolitanism that characterise cosmopolitan thought as either “actually existing” or ormative ideal. The RTG straddles both perspectives by investigating cosmopolitanisms as emerging in a plurality of locally embedded representational and performative practices. Such practices combine visions of transcultural justice, peace and conviviality with an ethical commitment to cultural difference. They engender/generate cosmopolitanisms in a ‘minor’ mode, by eking out new subject positions within the dominant discourses.Whilst we remain committed to a distinctly postcolonial perspective and an imperative to provincialise Eurocentric cosmopolitanism, we have closely observed how cosmopolitics of all kinds have come under siege in many parts of the world (in the US and UK, in India and Brazil, but also in Germany and across Europe) since we submitted the first project proposal in early 2015. The recent rise of xenophobic nationalism underscores the relevance of our project. However it also made us reconsider our initially rather uncompromising rejection of cosmo-politanisms in a ‘major’ mode, instead stressing the necessity of building wider alliances.Research projects will be clustered around five core thematic areas of training. These are minor cosmopolitan bodies, ecologies, indigeneity, inequalities and alternative genealogies. For each thematic field, projects will investigate literature and other media of artistic production, as well as everyday practices in which minor cosmopolitanisms are negotiated. To further ensure the cohesion between projects, the RTG has defined minor cosmopolitan aesthetics, translations, medialities, materialities and worlding as common research perspectives.The qualification and supervision programme fundamentally supports the thematic scope of planetary revision through its plural and decentralised training design. The RTG locates Potsdam at the crossroads of four partner institutions on four different continents. The Potsdam/Berlin team of researchers will cooperate closely with a team of scholars from the respective overseas institutions in joint supervision, research, teaching, and the organisation of overseas summer or winter schools. Each doctoral researcher is encouraged to spend at least five months at one of the eight partner institutions; several researchers shall have the opportunity to obtain a joint degree.


Principal Investigators
Römhild, Regina Prof. Dr. (Details) (European Ethnology IV)

Participating external organizations

Duration of Project
Start date: 10/2016
End date: 03/2021

Research Areas
Literary Studies

Research Areas
cultural history, Literaturwissenschaft, Soziologie

Last updated on 2021-06-04 at 12:21