Despite the expansion of new communication technologies, we have entered a dark age of public debates: AI-generated fake news, filter bubbles, and controlled information endanger democracies and shore up authoritarian governments. Consequently, the ideal of a public sphere where calm, rational arguments are exchanged is more remote than ever. Accessibility and inclusion are still largely out of reach. Instead, we witness increasing fragmentation and polarization. This has so far, however, been mostly explored in isolated national contexts, and not as a truly global phenomenon. On this evening in Berlin, we will transcend boundaries and borders to take a closer look at the Arab Middle East, Iran, and South Asia. Who is and can be part of publics in these regions? Who gets to participate? And which voices are excluded?

Together with Valeska Huber (Global History, Vienna), I will host this evening and look forward to discussing the above questions with our guests Amro Ali (Sociologist, Casablanca), Shenila Khoja-Moolji (Critical Muslim and Gender Studies, Washington, DC) and Ghazal Abdollahi (Artist and Activist, Berlin).

Registration is possible here: