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Dismantling Democracy from Within


CEU Summer University Course

27 June - 2 July 2022

Course Director
  • Dilip Gaonkar
    Rhetoric and Public Culture, Northwestern University, Evanston, USA
  • Shalini Randeria
    Central European University, Vienna, Austria/Budapest, Hungary
Course Faculty
  • Craig Calhoun
    Social Sciences, Arizona State University, Tempe, USA
  • Eva Fodor
    Gender Studies/Inequalities and Democracy, Democracy Institute, Central European University, Vienna, Austria/Budapest, Hungary
  • Nilüfer Göle
    Sociology, École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Paris, France
  • Charles Taylor
    Philosophy, McGill University, Montreal, Canada (Emeritus)
  • Nadia Urbinati
    Political Science, Columbia University, New York, USA
Course coordinator
  • Liam Mayes
    Communication, Tulane University, New Orleans, USA / Faculty Coordinator of the CEU summer course

During the first decades of the twenty-first century, the threat to democratic societies the world over has increasingly come from within. In general, this threat from within is not one of military coups or the interference of foreign governments, but of fraught popular elections and rising populist tides. Amid an array of national and cultural differences shaped by history and contemporary conditions, there is no one true and tested path to securing democratic societies against this threat. Yet this need not mean abandoning democracy. It means diagnosing democracy’s current failures, understanding its partial achievements, and renewing its many and varied cultures. There is an urgent need for both sustained dialogue among proponents of diverse interpretive positions and their recommendations, for policy as well as mobilization.

The “Dismantling Democracy from Within" course advances the twin mission of understanding the critical challenges democracy is facing and developing the democratic agendas that will meet these challenges under variable cultural and socio-economic conditions. Such a mission can only be secured by facilitating a robust dialogue among students, activists, and scholars assembled from all over the world. Students will leave the Summer School with a deeper knowledge of the specific challenges facing democracy in different contexts as well as a global understanding of how they are connected.

Sessions at the Summer School are led by its distinguished faculty and will generally take the form of lecture presentations, seminar discussions, and student-centered workshops. Throughout the week, students will have the opportunity to discuss their research with faculty during office hours sessions. 

Application deadline: 28 February 2022
For more information visit the course page at the CEU SUN website.
Research areas: