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Civil Disobedience Beyond the State II

CC BY 2.0 | Pierre (Rennes) from flickr

CC BY 2.0 | Pierre (Rennes) from flickr

The Digitalization of Disobedience from Whistleblowing to Anonymous

From the Civil Rights Movement to Occupy, civil disobedience is an essential part of the history and present of liberal democracies. At the same time, however, this form of protest has remained theoretically and politically contested. Currently, there are two central and interrelated phenomena that are triggering a significant transformation of civil disobedience: globalisation and digitalisation. Jointly, they raise new theoretical and political challenges that require a rethinking of civil disobedience beyond the state. With this workshop – the second in a series of three – we aim at contributing to this rethinking from a variety of interdisciplinary perspectives.

The focus of this workshop is the emergence of digital tactics of civil disobedience. Recently, two digital practices have emerged as prominent new forms of civil disobedience, thereby challenging the traditional understanding: Anonymous and Whistleblowing. In three sessions with presentations from our speakers followed by a set of short comments and an open discussion we will address the digital turn of civil disobedience and its implications for political theory.


  • Gabriella Coleman (Montreal)
  • Joss Hands (Cambridge)
  • Manohar Kumar (Delhi, tbc)
  • Geoffroy de Lagasnerie (Paris)
  • Bill Scheuerman (Bloomington)
  • Jillian C. York (Berlin)


Friday May 8, 2015

13:00 – 13:30Welcome and Opening
13:30 – 14:15Lessons learned and emerging questions
14:15 – 16:15Session 1: Weapons of the Geek? Anonymous and civil disobedience
16:15 – 17:00Break / Location change
17:00 – 18:30 Public Lecture: Gabriella Coleman
The Lecture will take place at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin |
Vorlesungssaal R. 2091, Unter den Linden 6, 10117 Berlin. Register here for Gabriella Colman’s public Lecture.

Saturday May 9, 2015

09:30 – 10:00Coffee
10:00 – 12:00Session 2: Whistleblowing – the new Civil Disobedience?
12:00 – 13:30Lunchbreak
13:30 – 15:30Session 3: The Digital Turn of Civil Disobedience?
15:30 – 16:00Coffeebreak
16:00 – 17:00Concluding Session / Goodbye


Robin Celikates (University of Amsterdam)
Annette Zimmermann (University of Oxford)
Theresa Züger (Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society)


Participation on registration only. Please contact:

Event date

08.05.2015 - 09.05.2015 ical | gcal


ACUD MACHT NEU,  Veteranenstraße 21,  10119 Berlin-Mitte


Theresa Züger, Dr.

Research Group Lead: Public Interest AI | AI & Society Lab


This high-profile lecture series thrives to develop a European perspective on the processes of transformation that our societies are currently undergoing.


Once a month we publicly discuss the impact of digitalisation on the society. Therefore we invite special guests and engage in a dialogue with the audience.


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