21.05.2022 - 22.05.2022 Events, Literature

Night of Ideas 2022 

Saturday, May 21, 2022
7 PM-12:30 AM ET
Villa Albertine New York and the Brooklyn Public Library

Villa Albertine and the BPL present 2022 edition of Night of Ideas, a free annual nocturnal marathon of philosophical debates, performances, readings and more, hosted in 19 cities across the country this May. The US joins the international community in celebrating this global event, which is being hosted in over 100 countries and is coordinated by the Institut français. 

In this period of intense geopolitical upheaval in Europe and around the world, compounded social and political challenges are producing deep crises, particularly in Ukraine. The Night of Ideas creates a rare and powerful forum, enabling 250+ artists, researchers, and community leaders to engage with each other and the public on these core issues of our time. The theme, “Where Are We Going?” sparks conversation about war and the future of global democracy, on the stage of pandemic recovery and economic turmoil. It also leads to important discussions about community-based climate action, about concrete steps toward equity and racial justice, and more. 

Night of Ideas is the continuation of a long-running successful collaboration with Brooklyn Public Library, alongside both new and returning partners in 18 other cities. Today, Night of Ideas is a nationwide event, drawing tens of thousands of attendees across the country. 

The US edition of Night of Ideas is organized by Villa Albertine, in partnership with 50+ institutions, including the Ukrainian Institute of America and The Polish Cultural Institute New York among others. 

Select program highlights at the iconic location in Brooklyn, New York as well as featured events from across the country, are below. Explore the full city-by-city program–the largest to date–and register at nightofideas.org

Polish Cultural Institute presents Prof. ELZBIETA MATYNIA 

Elzbieta Matynia

Elzbieta Matynia

Professor of Sociology and Liberal Studies

Where Are We Going? A Bus Journey
Democracy’s Endgame?

Elzbieta Matynia is Professor of Sociology and Liberal Studies, and founding director of the Transregional Center for Democratic Studies (TCDS). Her research in political and cultural sociology focuses on democratic transformations, gender and democracy, the borderlands of a shared Europe, and more recently on the challenges faced by democracies emerging with a legacy of violence. Her book Performative Democracy (2009, Paradigm) examines a potential in political life that easily escapes theorists: the indigenously inspired enacting of democracy by citizens, and identifies the conditions for performativity in public life. Her most recent book, An Uncanny Era (2013, Yale University Press) is a discussion on the precariousness of democracy, and early signs of its recent retreat in Central Europe). She is working on a new book, Democracy After Violence.

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