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Liad Hussein Kantorowicz: When You Died, the City Died with You
When You Died, the City Died with You
(p. 58 – 70)

Liad Hussein Kantorowicz

When You Died, the City Died with You

PDF, 13 pages

  • globalization
  • art
  • politics
  • cosmopolitics
  • art theory

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Liad Hussein Kantorowicz

is a performance artist, activist, and perpetual migrant. Her performances deal with de-exotifying and de-mystifying the positions of so-called sexual or political deviants. In them, the body is used as a tool to transgress the boundaries of the public space, and to call into question the public‘s ‘democratic’ limitations. She started co-ordinating street interventions and direct actions in the West Bank and performing in events in the formative years of Palestine- Israel‘s queer scene. After moving to Berlin she gradually placed her work on stage. Her works include: Pussy. An Ongoing Performative Research (2018), No Democracy Here (2017), Queerhana: This is a Free Zone (2017), Terrorist Superstars (2016). Her work has been presented at the 10th Berlin Biennale, Athens Museum of Queer Arts AMOQA, Kampnagel, Transmediale festival, among other institutions; she also performs in streets, social centers and queer bars in Europe and Palestine-Israel. Liad is a spokesperson for sex workers’ rights and a founder of a Berlin peer project for migrant sex workers at Hydra e.V.
Zairong Xiang (ed.): minor cosmopolitan

Cosmopolitanism is a theory about how to live together. The earliest formulation of cosmopolitanism in the West could be dated to as early as the fourth century BCE in ancient Greece by Diogenes, who famously said that he was a “citizen of the world – kosmopolitês,” an idea later picked up by Immanuel Kant, the German philosopher who proposed a philosophy of a world of “perpetual peace.” When cosmopolitanism first emerged as a political idea for modernity in the European Enlightenment, the project embraced the liberal promises of a globalizing economy, yet remained oblivious to, and even complicit with, capitalism, slavery and colonialism. It centered on the male, bourgeois, and white liberal subject, irrespective of the ongoing disenfranchisement, dehumanization, and extermination of its Others.

 

At the dawn of the 21st century, and in the wake of rapid globalization however, academics, politicians and other pundits enthusiastically declared cosmopolitanism to be no longer just a philosophical ideal, but a real, existing fact. Across the globe, they argued, people were increasingly thinking and feeling beyond the nation, considering themselves citizens of the world. Meanwhile, the global ecological crisis worsens, fascism with different outfits returns in many places of the world, the repression of women, sexual, racial, class and other minorities on a global scale persists; the so called “refugee crisis” inundates the mediascape and political spectacle. Not much of those cosmopolitan promises have left it seems. Perhaps precisely because of this, however, it seems to be an absolute necessity for scholars, activists, and artists today to face the complexities and promises cosmopolitanism has raised although not adequately answered. What has happened to the cosmopolitan promise, and who betrayed it?

 

“Minor cosmopolitanisms” wishes to challenge the underlying premises of ‘major’ cosmopolitanism without letting go of the unfulfilled emancipatory potential of the concept at large. It wants to rethink cosmopolitanisms in the plural, and trace multiple origins and trajectories of cosmopolitan thought from across the globe. Regarding cosmopolitanisms as emerging through diverse locally, historically and politically specific practices, minor cosmopolitanisms are predicated on difference without abandoning the quest for a shared vision of conviviality and justice. It seeks to answer: how to live at once with our difference and shared struggle? How to think our complicity with even those we most resist? Who sustains the world’s flourishing despite all this?

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