Interventions - A Research Network on Humanitarian Politics and Culture

If humanitarianism designates a specific rationality that prescribes help for strangers in times of crisis, humanitarianism today appears at every level of the social formation, including the economic, political, social, and cultural. Still more humanitarian organizations continue to come into being. Still more military and political interventions are framed as humanitarian assistance. And still more narratives or images of suffering among crisis-affected populations are made available to us in the less risk-prone Western societies to contemplate. A recurring observation in the recent research literature is that we are living in a humanitarian age. The aim of Interventions is to found a transdisciplinary forum for research in contemporary humanitarian politics and culture.

Core group

Devika Sharma
Associate Professor, Department of Arts and Cultural Studies, University of Copenhagen.

She is the author of Amerikanske fængselsbilleder: Kunst, kultur og indespærring i samtidens USA [American Prison Imagery: Arts, Culture, and Incarceration in the Contemporary U.S.] (Tiderne Skifter, 2011), the co-editor of Structures of Feeling: Affectivity and the Study of Culture (de Gruyter 2015), and a co-editor of the journal K&K. and she is currently working on humanitarian culture. Sharma is co-organiser of the research network Interventions, and she is in particular interested in the developments in humanitarian culture and government in the 21st century, including the new economic and affective relationships between humanitarian ‘benefactors’ and ‘beneficiaries’.
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Anne Vestergaard
Associate Professor, Centre for Corporate Social Responsibility at Copenhagen Business School.

Her research revolves around mainstream discourses of morality, pursued in two strands of research, one concerning humanitarian communication, the other concerning CSR communication. Vestergaard’s work is published in international journals such as Journal of Business Ethics, Corporate Communication, Language and Politics and Critical Discourse Studies. In addition, Vestergaard is co-editor of ‘Civic Engagement and Social Media. Political Participation Beyond Protest’ (2015) and the forthcoming Routledge Handbook of Humanitarian Communication.
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Sine Plambech
Anthropologist and researcher at the Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS). Adjunct professor at Barnard College/Columbia University, New York.

She conducts research on migration & humanitarianism; women, gender and international migration; undocumented migration; human smuggling; human trafficking; deportation; marriage migration; sex work migration; documentary film and visual anthropology. She received The Danish Research Councils Sapere Aude Elite Research Award (2015) and The Ethnographic Associations Communication Award (2015).
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