Image description: White font on a black background in four lines. In capital letters is written PERFORMING SOCIETY SYMPOSIUM. Underneath it reads: MUSEUM MMK.


Gurminder K Bhambra, Aria Dean, Rainer Forst, Markus Gabriel, Geoffroy de Lagasnerie, Natasha Lennard, Matteo Pasquinelli, Nina Power, Tiziana Terranova, Lea Ypi

Societies are not givens, but take shape in a process of negotiation, regulation, governance and resistance. The symposium Performing Society is devoted to the question of how we can conceive of societies in their current dynamics as well as their future formations. Do we need new terminology or are we called upon to rethink that already at our disposal?
The imagination and construction of the social, the relationship between immigration and class, the performativity of power, and faith in progress, will be among the topics discussed, but also the political as a concept, as an act of speech or as epistemological and social justice.
Within the framework of the exhibition Museum, in which art offers scope for the Other and its visualization, for freedom, transgression and resistance, the symposium is intended as an invitation to contemplate the societies in which we live–and want to live.


Kristina Hasenpflug: Welcome

Susanne Pfeffer: Introduction

Aria Dean: Bad Infinity

Lea Ypi: Immigration and Social Class

Geoffroy de Lagasnerie: Is Democracy a Relevant Concept for Thinking about Politics?

Rainer Forst: The Performativity of Power

Gurminder K Bhambra: Performing Society, Reforming Society: From Progress to Reparations


Natasha Lennard: Liberatory Language Games and Anti-Fascist Speech Acts: Why We Need a Better Understanding of Truth and Meaning-Making in the Fight for Social Justice

Nina Power: We Live in a Society: Ironic Belonging and Meme-Being in a Post-Public Age

Tiziana Terranova: Hypersocial Planetarization

Matteo Pasquinelli: Tools, Numbers, Machines and Algorithms: A Social History of Artificial Intelligence

Markus Gabriel: Fiction, Imagination, and Social Facts–The Dialectical Glue of Society

Martin Saar, Nassima Sahraoui, Anna Sailer

Susanne Pfeffer, Anna Sailer

The symposium will be held in English. Admission is free.

Sponsored by


25 Januar — 26 Januar 2020, 11:00 — 18:00


Domstraße 10
60311 Frankfurt am Main

  • Monday Closed
  • Tuesday 10:00 - 18:00
  • Wednesday 10:00 - 20:00
  • Thursday 10:00 - 18:00
  • Friday 10:00 - 18:00
  • Saturday 10:00 - 18:00
  • Sunday 10:00 - 18:00
+49 69 212 30447