Dr.phil. Dipl.Sozw. Nanna Heidenreich
The Latin prefix trans means over,
across, beyond, to the other side; it suggests movement. Yet, what underlies this prefix and its idea of transcending are
settings. These operate with demarcations, attributions, enclosures, and comparisons. In this sense, the Department of Transcultural
Studies, newly established in 2020, stands first and foremost for the critical examination of these settings and the procedures
that go along with them. The department looks into territorial, geopolitical, social, epistemological, legal, disciplinary,
and institutional orders that are reflected in conventions, discourses, social and political constellations, and practices
in order to then deal with the processes that arise when orders come together: crossings, transgressions, infiltrations, appropriations,
conflicts, frictions, transformations.
From an academic point of view, the examination of transcultural processes
requires awareness of the connections between research practice and research content. This results in a necessary multiplication
and opening of knowledge and learning cultures, always aware that universities are not a power-free space. The Department
of Transcultural Studies takes a look at structures and asks: How can knowledge be decentralised? How can this be translated
into action – including that of research and teaching? How do we pose our questions and which ones? And last but not least:
how to imagine otherwise?