Cosmopolitanisms: past, present, future?

Hosted by LSE Human Rights and the Department of Sociology

Online public event


Professor Etienne Balibar


Dr Ayça Çubukçu

A cosmopolitics that allows it for mankind to address its common interests is clearly needed, as demonstrated again by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is even urgent, a matter of life and death for millions, and survival for the planet as a livable environment.

But there can exist no cosmopolitics without a cosmopolitan idea. From this point of view, we find ourselves in an extremely contradictory situation: always an “essentially contested concept” throughout history, cosmopolitanism today appears squeezed between powerful nationalisms competing for global or local hegemony, and utopian ideals in search of their capacity to rally the multitude. The lecture does not offer a blueprint, it traces a genealogy and delineates some possibilities for the future which is already our actuality.

Meet our speaker and chair

Etienne Balibar is Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Paris-Nanterre, and Anniversary Chair of Contemporary European Philosophy at Kingston University, London. He is also visiting professor at Columbia University in the City of New York.

Ayça Çubukçu (@ayca_cu) is an Associate Professor of Sociology at LSE and co-director of LSE Human Rights.

More about this event

LSE Human Rights (@LSEHumanRights) is a trans-disciplinary centre of excellence for international academic research, teaching and critical scholarship on human rights.

The Department of Sociology (@LSEsociology) seek to produce sociology that is public-facing, fully engaged with London as a global city, and with major contemporary debates in the intersection between economy, politics and society – with issues such as financialisation, inequality, migration, urban ecology, and climate change.

Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSECosmopolitanisms

Podcast & Video

A podcast of this event is available to download from Cosmopolitanisms: past, present, future?

A video of this event is available to watch at Cosmopolitanisms: past, present, future?

Podcasts and videos of many LSE events can be found at the LSE Public Lectures and Events: podcasts and videos channel.

Social Media

Follow LSE public events on Twitter for notification on the availability of an event podcast, the posting of transcripts and videos, the announcement of new events and other important event updates. Event updates and other information about what’s happening at LSE can be found on the LSE's Facebook page and for live photos from events and around campus, follow us on Instagram. For live webcasts and archive video of lectures, follow us on YouTube

LSE in Pictures is a selection of images taken by the school photographer.

From time to time there are changes to event details so we strongly recommend that if you plan to attend this event you check back on this listing on the day of the event.