The Social Life of the Democracy Concept in Bangladesh and Senegal
MIDEA 2 is a three years (2011-2014) long research project sponsored by the German Research Foundation (DFG).
The project examines the global spread of the terms democracy/democratization on the basis of their local appropriation in two Islamic societies, Bangladesh and Senegal. It is assumed that the concept of democracy has penetrated remote regions of the world, where it experiences unexpected enrichment due to specific connotations. Such reinterpretations are negotiated in interactions, characterized by different positioning acts, and in constellations of actors, shaped by asymmetries of power. The main interest of the project is to explore how the global norm of democracy generates local realities through social practices: To what extent and in which ways are the globally circulating notions of democracy and democratization - for example through development channels – re-interpreted in local contexts, debated, modified, used strategically, appropriated or rejected? To answer these questions, the project focuses on culturally embedded notions of the "good life", that is happiness, law and handling violence. The comparative analysis investigates the negotiation processes of the local understanding of democracy and in particular their relevant current domains in both research regions.
Conference: Spaces of Violence in Democracies
October 24 - 26, 2013 ZiF Bielefeld
Convenors: Eva Gerharz (Bochum), Christian Meyer (Siegen), and Joanna Pfaff-Czarnecka (Bielefeld)