Europäische Zeiten/European Times – A Transregional Approach to the Societies of Central and Eastern Europe (EUTIM) is a joint project of the European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), the University of Potsdam and the Forum Transregionale Studien in Berlin. The research college has been funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) since April 1, 2021, within the framework of the guideline for the promotion of regional studies (area studies) for an initial period of three years.

EUTIM takes a look at narratives of time and space at the edges of Europe. Based on historical experiences and ways of thinking in the societies of Central and Eastern Europe, EUTIM analyzes disparate concepts of “old vs. new” and “East vs. West” on a pan-European level, especially in the second half of the 20th century and the present.

Asynchronicities have repeatedly arisen in Europe in the wake of revolutions, radical reform processes or as a result of the different visions of the future during the Cold War, in which European societies were locked in a time cage. After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the peaceful upheavals in many countries of the region, these divergent temporal and regional orders were initially broken up in their apparent unambiguity, but continued to have a divisive effect. The research college takes a systematic and methodical look at these effects of non-simultaneity and shows how productive or destructive these regimes of temporality are used in institutions, arts, science and societies.

EUTIM reconnects research in and on Eastern Europe more strongly to the general theorizing in the cultural sciences and humanities via the leading question of the long-term effects of heterogeneous temporalities. The concept of non-simultaneity can unfold its significant analytical power in the analysis of transformation processes in Central and Eastern Europe and better explain contemporary cultural conflicts beyond regional boundaries. With its junior research groups and a structured doctoral program, the research college aims to produce high-quality dissertations and postdoctoral theses or projects.

The cultural and historical sub-project, located at the European University Viadrina and carried out by a group of researchers led by Annette Werberger and Andrii Portnov, questions, among other things, notions of stasis during the Cold War, as science itself was affected by processes of the hastily expected “Westernization” of temporality.

At the University of Potsdam, a group of young literary scholars led by Alexander Wöll is investigating arts in which inequalities have been attentively illustrated and texted. Despite the socio-political demand for European contemporaneity, artistic practices can be observed, especially in literature, that reveal inequalities. The projects offer a starting point for a profound analysis of European societies and a reflection on European or universal norms in relation to contemporaneity and modernization.

The Forum Transregionale Studien is responsible for the area of communication, which facilitates forms of joint work, arranges transfer processes, disseminates research standpoints and results, and networks EUTIM transregionally.

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