The "Cultural Cold War". Towards a Theorization of its Afro-Asian Contexts

Center for Advanced Studies, LMU, Seestraße 13, 80802 München
Center for Advanced Studies, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
22.10.2019 - 24.10.2019
Center for Advanced Studies LMU

The "Cultural Cold War". Towards a Theorization of its Afro-Asian Contexts
Conference organized by Prof. Dr. Christopher Balme (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München) und Dr. Gautam Chakrabarti (Freie Universität Berlin)

Culture was one of the key areas in which the multifaceted geopolitical struggle was played out between the 1950s and 1980s. There is a need – 25-plus years after the end of the Cold War – to collect experiences of and responses to questions regarding the formation of expert networks, philanthropic and/or governmental interventions, and peopleto- people contacts in and across various Afro-Asian and Euro-American countries.


22 October 2019

18:00-18:15 Welcome Address by Christopher Balme (LMU)

18:15-18:30 Thematic Introduction by Gautam Chakrabarti (FU Berlin)

18:30-20:00 Keynote Lecture: Vita Matiss (Riga/Geneva): Blackboards to Write Upon: Ibsen's Brand in Riga and Moscow in the 1970's. Moral Dilemmas for the Ages

23 October 2019

09:30-11:00 Panel 1: Theorising the Cultural Cold War – I
Chair: Gautam Chakrabarti (FU Berlin)

Monica Popescu (McGill University): Mythologies of Realism and Modernism: African Literature and the Cold War

Sudha Rajagopalan (Amsterdam): Journeys of Soviet Things: Cold War Entanglements in Cuban and Indian Homes

Christopher Balme (LMU): National Theatres in Africa between Modular Modernity and Cultural Heritage

11:30-13:00 Panel 2: Cultural-Political Contests in/between the ‘West’ and the ‘East’ – I
Chair: Ziad Adwan (LMU)

Inderjeet Parmar (City University of London): A New Sino-US ‘Cold War’? American-led Liberal International Order in Crisis

Christian Langer (FU Berlin) and Alexandre A. Loktionov (Cambridge): Archaeology as Soft Power in Cultural Cold Wars: Soviet Lessons for Chinese Egyptology

Severyan Dyakonov (IHEID Geneva): USSR and the East During the Cold War: Soviet Film Export in India in the 1950–1960s

14:00-15:30 Panel 3: Actors, Agents, Networks and Institutions – I
Chair: Berenika Szymanski-Düll (LMU, tbc)

Gesine Drews-Sylla (Prague/Tübingen): Dystopic Narratives of Migration and the Cold War: From La Noire de … to Octobre

Tal Zalmanovich (Haifa): Communist Fervor and Stalinist Disenchantment: The Journey of Trade Union Activists from Apartheid South Africa to London and Budapest in the 1950s

Gautam Chakrabarti (FU Berlin): A Month Is Not Enough: Early Soviet Perceptions of Indian People’s Theatre

16:00-17:30 Keynote Lecture: Carolien M. Stolte (Leiden): Afro-Asian Visions: The Cultural Politics of Solidarity Movements During the Early Cold War

24 October 2019
09:30-11:00 Panel 4: Theorising the Cultural Cold War – II
Chair: Christopher Balme

Christopher J. Lee (Lafayette College, Easton, PA): Return of the Event: Bandung and the Concept of the Conference

Milena Dragićević Šešić (University of Arts Belgrade): Cultural Transfers: Non-Aligned Movement and its Implications on
Yugoslav-Afro-Asian Relations

Ewa Bérard (CNRS-ENS Paris): The Struggle for Peace and Soviet Cultural Diplomacy before and after the Second World War

11:30-13:00 Panel 5: Actors, Agents, Networks and Institutions – II
Chair: Michael Hochgeschwender (LMU)

Danny Orbach (Jerusalem): Nazi Fugitives in the Cold War: The Search for a New Cultural Identity

Sophie Lange (HU Berlin): Greenpeace and Greenway – An Analysis of Cold War Cultural Strategies of Environmental Groups in the Divided Germany of the 1980s

Giles P. Scott-Smith (Leiden): Ivan Kats, the Congress for Cultural Freedom, and the Obor Foundation: Sketching the Trajectory of a Cold War Cultural Diplomat

14:00-15.30 Panel 6: Cultural-Political Contests in/between the ‘West’ and the 'East' – II
Chair: Abdul Karim Hakib (LMU)

Viviana Iacob (Bucharest): Cold War Mobilities: East European Theatre Going Global

Gideon Ime Morison (LMU): Theatre for Influence: American Cultural and Philanthropic Missions in West Africa during the Cold War

Rebecca Sturm (LMU): Brecht’s Work and Method to Discover and Promote Cultural and National Identity - East German Seminars for Afro-Asian Theatre Artists

16:00-161:45 Concluding Discussion
Moderated by Christopher Balme and Gautam Chakrabarti


Julia Schreiner

Center for Advanced Studies, LMU, Seestraße 13, 80802 München

The "Cultural Cold War". Towards a Theorization of its Afro-Asian Contexts, 22.10.2019 – 24.10.2019 München, in: H-Soz-Kult, 15.10.2019, <>.
Editors Information
Published on
Temporal Classification
Regional Classification
Additional Informations
Language Contribution
Country Event