COLD WAR UNIVERSITY Humanities and Arts Education as a (Battle)field of Diplomatic Influence and Decolonial Practice

International Online Workshop, Cold War University – Humanities and Arts Education as a (Battle)field of Diplomatic Influence and Decolonial Practice, organized by Christopher Balme, Judith
Rottenburg and Lisa Skwirblies

This workshop addresses the role that the university, the academy, and higher education

played in and for the Cultural Cold War. In a world of emerging nations, the development of
universities in postcolonial countries was a powerful tool of cultural diplomacy and soft
power influence. In countries like Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, the Philippines, Chile,
Columbia, and Indonesia, philanthropic institutions like the Rockefeller and the Carnegie
Foundation invested large sums of money in the development of high potential universities
securing Western influence in a decolonizing world. Universities in Europe, the USA, and the
USSR, on the other hand, actively recruited students from Africa, Asia, and the Middle East
through attractive scholarships or short term visiting programs. Often unexpectedly, many
of the Third World students organized themselves in political student groups and carried the
politics of non-alignment and decolonization into the universities of their host countries and
their larger public sphere.
Focusing on histories of the humanities and of arts education, the workshop seeks to
investigate the Cold War university as a battlefield of both diplomatic influence and
decolonial practice. From a specific theatre studies perspective, it explores the impact of the
Cold War university on the development of Theatre Studies in the postcolony, on the
emergence of Theatre for Development as an organizational field (especially on the African
continent) and on the understanding of theatre and performance practices as tools of
decolonial protest on European campuses.

Below you will find the programme:

10h Welcome and short introduction (Judith Rottenburg + Lisa Skwirblies)

10.15h Christopher Balme (LMU Munich)  „Arts and the University: Institutional logics in the developing world and beyond“

11h Hasibe Kalkan (Istanbul)  „‚In, From, Between‘, on the role of the Rockefeller Foundation in   establishing transnational theatrical spaces: Turkey – United States“

*10 minute break*

12h Viviana Iacob (LMU Munich) „The University of the Theatre of Nations: Explorations into Cold War exchanges“

* 12.45h-14.30h lunch break*

14.30h Gideon Morison (LMU Munich) „(In)Between ‚Freedom‘ and ‚Friendship‘: Funding, Training and Cold War Influences on Theatre Studies Curriculum of Selected Nigerian Universities“

15.15h Lisa Skwirblies (LMU Munich) “ Performing the Politics of Non-Alignment in Cold War Germany“

16h Wrap up / information on publication