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Alternative Realities Conference


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Alternative Realities: Utopian Thought in Times of Political Rupture

A two-day conference organized by The Wende Museum, the Max Kade Institute for Austrian-German-Swiss Studies at USC, and the Centre for Contemporary History, Zentrum für Zeithistorische Forschung Potsdam (ZZF).

To view the full two-day conference program, visit: http://www.wendemuseum.org/sites/default/files/2018-03-14-Program.pdf

Day 1: Monday, April 16, 2018
The Wende Museum
10808 Culver Blvd., Culver City, CA 90230

Day 2: Tuesday, April 17, 2018
Doheny Memorial Library at the University of Southern California (USC)
3550 Trousdale Pkwy, Los Angeles, CA 90089

Recent history, the so-called Age of Extremes, has been marked by constant war, revolutionary upheavals, and sudden political shifts that have shattered existing structures and abruptly called prior assumptions into question. Such moments of rupture pave the way for the imagination of a new order. This conference focuses on the key role of utopian visions, both artistic and intellectual, that changed the world from the beginning of the twentieth century to the present day.

In what ways did these utopian fantasies lead to direct political change? What was the role played by artists, writers, filmmakers, intellectuals, and visionary political thinkers in shaping new horizons and offering alternative models? How did artistic avant-gardes, science-fiction novels, experimental films, and utopian communities embody new social visions, structures, and practices?

We explore, in short, the power of alternative visions of reality in modern and contemporary history.

Additional support provided by USC Libraries, USC Dornsife Dean’s Office, and the USC Dornsife Departments of Art History, History, and Slavic Languages and Literature.


How can I contact the organizer with any questions?

Day 1 (Wende Museum) inquiries, please contact:
Amanda Roth at aroth@wendemuseum.org

Day 2 (USC) inquires, please contact:
Helga Schwarz at kade@usc.edu

Where should I park for the conference?

Day 1 (Wende Museum): Free museum parking is available in the lot in front of the building at 10808 Culver Blvd., Culver City, CA 90230.

Day 2 (USC): Parking on campus is currently $12. The parking structure located at McCarthy Way (formerly known as PSX) is closest to Doheny Library. View a campus map here: https://web-app.usc.edu/maps/map.pdf

Image courtesy of Alexei Tylevich