Anne Lagny: The notion of Heimat, between left and right…

On The January 15, 2020

18h30 - 20h30
Salon de la Résidence IEA
3 Allée de Fontenay, 69007 Lyon

Several political and cultural events (Edgar Reitz's Die andere Heimat, far right-wing speeches, the insertion of the word "Heimat" in the name of the German Ministry of the Interior, Nora Krug's best-selling Graphic Novel, Belonging, in 2018) have put the notion of Heimat back at the center of the debate on German identity, while revealing contradictory issues.

On the one hand, the rediscovery of the Heimat as a vincinity homeland, carrying values of identity and community, linked to concrete emotions and feelings, as opposed to the distant abstraction of the vaterland and the values of democracy. On the other hand, the instrumentalization of the term for the benefit of ideologies and political programs driven by xenophobia, the fear of immigration and globalization.
How to identify and distinguish these different uses, how to clear the ambiguities, how to preserve the Heimat from drifting towards the extreme right, a risk that is always latent?

Anne Lagny is a Professor of Germanic Studies at ENS Lyon, a researcher at the IHRIM Laboratory, specialized in literature, history of ideas and religion.
Résidence IEA, 3 allée de Fontenay
69007 Lyon