Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Song for Europe

This weekend several intellectuals and politicians gathered in Berlin to discuss the cultural politics of the European Union. Their goal: "To Give Europe a Soul" (auf Deutsch) , as the conference was called.



I have found little reporting on the conference (I would appreciate any links to articles that people can find), but it seems as if the participants tread on familiar ground. Former German president Weizsaecker emphasized the "mixed character" and classical origins of European culture: Rome, Judaism, Christianity, Islamic Science. Timothy Garton Ash pointed to the struggles for toleration, liberation and rapprochement. If none of these approaches are particularly imaginative, perhaps the conversation itself is a means of defining the culture.

1 Comments:

At 11:05 AM, Blogger chlgeorge said...

Roman influence is definitely a big uniting factor for some parts of Europe. Or it feels like that for me anyway. The religions of the book. Shared royal families. Historical migrations. Similarities in visual culture. The language families.

With many Europeans originating from Central Asia it shows how difficult it is to define Europe.

 

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