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Politics, Identities, and Inequalities

Recently, matters of identity and politics have become more and more entangled: when the personal and the political intertwine, inequalities emerge that point precisely to the ways in which politics affects our lives in more direct ways than we previously imagined. Black Lives Matter protests have increased in response to police brutality and institutional racism; Women’s Marches (particularly in opposition to Donald Trump) were on the rise; ongoing Brexit arguments raise the ghost of Leave and Remain campaigns in British society. But what are the effects of the combination of politics and identity on us as individuals, for societies at large, and for democracies?

  • Who is this programme for?

    For current university students (Bachelor's and Master's) interested in political science broadly, and the dynamic and interdisciplinary intersection of politics and identity. Working professionals with an interest in the academic study of these topics are also welcome to apply.

  • Programme description

    Trump! Brexit! Black Lives Matter! Many of today’s political developments seem to revolve around identity in more ways than one. While some acknowledge the importance of identity politics in an age with growing inequalities, others argue that focusing on identity in the political arena distracts from the “real cause” of contemporary political anger: economic inequality. In this winter school, we investigate this discussion by looking at various angles of identity and how they intersect with and influence today’s politics in Western democracies. Ultimately, it is our contention that more inequalities than just the economic emerge when we inhabit an intersectional perspective.

    In the first week of this online course, we will examine the concept of identity through an academic lens, and analyse how it intersects with other important concepts such as culture, class, race and ethnicity. In the second week, we will turn to current political debates that are strongly steered by ‘identity politics’, most dominantly those around populism, globalization and antiracist social movements. In our online lectures, the students will be given the theoretical background to participate in empirical discussions that will be the basis of our interactive online seminars. In these sessions, students will work together to disentangle empirical manifestations of identity politics, unravelling how both are so closely bound together.

    This online course mixes live and pre-recorded online lectures with online group seminars, guided self-study, and peer reviews to unravel the topics at hand. 

  • Academic director

    Luuc Brans (MSc) is a PhD candidate at KU Leuven working on the dissemination and translation of cultural forms and styles, and is also a former lecturer at the UvA in Political Science. He studied political science and the sociology of culture at the University of Amsterdam, while also doing an exchange at the Free University in Berlin. Luuc is also the Academic Director of the Pre-University Honours Programme in Politics and Identity. He went on to obtain his Master’s degree in Nationalism Studies with distinction at the University of Edinburgh. Luuc’s research interest lies with nationalism and national identity in general, and the development of German national identity after the fall of the Berlin Wall in particular. As a political sociologist, he values interdisciplinary approaches.

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Facts & Figures
Mode Online
Credits 4 ECTS, 2 weeks
Language of instruction English
Starts in January