Minorities in the Past, Present and Future

Ethnic, religious or linguistic minorities are shaping today's modern society. Was this also the case in former times?

How does the present relate to the past in this instance, and how do such minorities position themselves in general between the retaining of their traditions and the assimilation to their surroundings? What social, religious, economic, but also aesthetic implications are connected to this?

Moreover, the surroundings, the 'rest of society' reacts to its own minorities and creates parameters for a mutual existence. Hence, a minority also influences a majority.

Do minorities and majorities always encounter the same problems? Or are they fundamentally different? Do they foster countermovements or even crises? What external and internal factors are crucial here? How can such a process be qualitatively or even quantitatively defined and described over a longer period of time?

So what does today's Turkish muslim migrant worker have in common with a Jew in antiquity or a 21st-century German intellectual living abroad? They all develop strategies between assimilation to and distinction from their surroundings, or the 'rest of society'.

As a foundation for a sociopolitical debate, which is meant to be held by means of public lectures, the topics of Minorities and Majorities, Integration and Conflict are the focus for the RG's work.


In a 2009 issue of the Junge Akademie Magazin, there was a contribution by RG members on different approaches to the forms of existence of minorities: S. Koller, V. Lepper, „Jude-Sein – Anders-Sein. Historische Wendepunkte und Konstanten jüdischer Minderheiten", Junge Akademie Magazin Nr. 10, p. 16 f.

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