Institute of Historical and Cultural Anthropology

Collaborative Research Centre (CRC) 923 "Threatened Order - Societies under Stress"

Financial crises, natural and technical disasters, terrorist attacks and the refugee “crisis” have all left significant marks on international politics, economies, societies, and cultures. Extreme situations like upheavals, revolutions, and disasters affect everyday life. Such circumstances make us aware of how fragile and contingent the foundations of our life and actions are. Extreme situations can also lead to rapid change in social perception and behavior patterns.

Working with the above mentioned threat scenarios, as well as others, the projects of CRC 923 investigate the manner in which various social orders (which can structure social groups or entire societies) change, especially when facing threats to their very existence.

The Centre's research focuses on Europe from Antiquity to contemporary history. Additional projects analyse African, North and Latin American, Chinese and Australian examples of threatened social orders.

The CRC's main interdisciplinary project areas seek to achieve four long-term research goals: historicizing the perception and interpretation of current crisis diagnostics; analysing the mechanisms of rapid social changes; redefining spatial and temporal categories in the social sciences and the humanities; reflecting on the fundamentals of the participating disciplines in the era of globalization.