100 years of the October Revolution: Intellectuals and commitments in contemporary times.

Walter Benjamin International Conference 2017
  • 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of the so-called October Revolution, a process that had a decisive impact in the 20th century
  • This conference aims to examine the transformations of intellectual figures with respect to the Soviet Revolution throughout most of the 20th century, as well as the inherent complexity of the globalized world

The Revolution and particularly the stance towards that new reality dominated the core subject matter of the debate on European ideals and political commitment. The reactions to this shakedown – whether they be praise or criticism of the Revolution –  gave rise to an ideological battlefield that stressed the public role of the man of letters, the philosopher, the artist, and the scientist. Up until the 1960s, the movements of Communism, Nazism, fascism, anti-fascism, and anti-colonialism as well as the fights for democracy, freedom and peace became the pillars of major struggles, both in armed conflicts and the intellectual field.

The emergence of new intellectual and political discourses in the late 1960s, the discrediting of real socialism and the triumph of a liberalism that embodied the supposed end of history dominated the role of the classical engaged     intellectual. Nevertheless, the latent and clear imbalances and chaos produced everywhere by the expansion of the neoliberal model opened other ways of thinking and new political attitudes appeared. This, among others, led to the emergence of feminism(s) and different gender and post-colonial perspectives and anti-globalization proposals, engagement in conflict resolution and actions aimed at the reestablishment of peace, democratic memory and respect for human rights.

Free access.
Registrations are open until September 24, 2017


  • Amelia Valcárcel
    Professor of Moral and Political Philosophy at the University of Oviedo
  • Enzo Traverso
    Professor of Contemporary History at the Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
  • Emmanuel Faye
    Professor of Modern and Contemporary Philosophy at the University of Rouen
  • François Cusset
    Professor of American Studies at the University of Paris West – Nanterre
  • Ferran Gallego
    Lecturer in Contemporary History at the Authonomous University of Barcelona
  • Olga Glondys
    Postdoctoral researcher ate the Department of Spanish Philology of the Autonomous University of Barcelona
  • Mari Paz Balibrea
    Senior lecturer in Spanish Literature and Cultural Studies at the Birkbeck College, University of London
  • Rafael Grasa
    Professor of International Relations at the Authonomous University of Barcelona
  • César Rendueles
    Professor at the Department of Sociological Theory of the Complutense University  of Madrid


Programme highlights

September 29
University of Girona

  • Book presentation: Líneas de fuga. Hacia otra historiografía del exilio cultural republicano  español, by Mari Paz Balibrea (ed.) With the presence of the editor.
  • 3rd Walter Benjamin Memorial International Prize in recognition of an unpublished essay.

September 30

October 8

Walking route from Banyuls-sur-Mer to Portbou as a tribute to Walter Benjamin, with the artistic intervention “Emboscada”, by the group Nicomedes Mendes. A project framed within the cycle “El Viatge de les Arts” by the Centre de Creació Contemporània Nau Côclea in Camallera.



Sept 28-30 and Oct 8, 2017
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