Thursday – Sunday

Campus Bockenheim

Meetings, Conferences, Workshops

Meetings, Conferences, Workshops

Critical Theory in Motion - Dance into Multidimensionality

The Institute for Social Research in Frankfurt celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2023. To mark this occasion, the 10th biennial conference of the International Herbert Marcuse Society (IHMS) will take place in Frankfurt am Main, October 5-8 at the Student House on the Bockenheim campus, established in 1953 by Max Horkheimer, and the Archive Center of the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University of Frankfurt.

While known as the »Frankfurt School«, for more than three decades now, numerous archival materials publications of documents, letters, drafts, photographs, and other materials of its members are scattered across Germany. From the University of Frankfurt, which houses the archives of Herbert Marcuse, Leo Löwenthal, and Max Horkheimer, to the collections of Theodor W. Adorno and Walter Benjamin which are at the Akademie der Künste in Berlin, as well as Erich Fromm’s archive in the University of Tübingen, have provided from these different vantages new insights on the Institute for Social Research. The conference will not only reflect this multidimensionality of Critical Theory, but also ask Marcusean questions: Are we still living in a one-dimensional society? What is a multidimensional concept of in a time of overlapping crises? Despite the current forces of repression what are the possibilities for a multidimensional society?

The conference will accept abstract submissions and papers on broadly conceived topics related to Herbert Marcuse’s critique and reflections of society. Abstracts that address the themes of the conference and engage with the founders of Critical Theory are especially welcome.

The eight panels and two round table discussions that will be considered at the conference are oriented around the following themes:

  1. Criticism of capitalism, in particular its contradictions between the global »North« and »South«
  2. Analyses of Anti-Semitism and National Socialism in Critical Theory
  3. Feminism and Critical Theory
  4. Political Practice of (New) Social Movements and the power(lessness) of NGOs
  5. Psychoanalysis and social criticism
  6. The possibilities of solidarity in times of crises
  7. The role of »rackets« in Critical Theory as an analytical tool of social, political, and economic critique
  8. Friendship and utopia
  9. New research results to Herbert Marcuse

We also invite proposals for participants in two six-person roundtable discussions

  1. Education for maturity – What is the role of critical pedagogy today?
  2. Liberating or oppressive violence – Are there justified wars?


Panels will open with a 30-minute keynote presentation and then four 15-minute presentations by panel members. Roundtables will coordinate among themselves.

Send abstracts of 600 words (max.) to the organizers (see below) by April 30th, 2023. Decisions for participation will be made by June 15th

The conference will take place in the Student House (Campus Bockenheim) and the Archive Center of the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University/Frankfurt. A reader with partly unpublished texts from the archives of Marcuse and Löwenthal will be published for the conference. During the conference, two guided tours will take place at the Institute for Social Research (please book in advance; details to follow). In addition to events at the university's archive center, the various archives of Critical Theory will be exhibited, and there will be a workshop for digital access to the archives.

The conference fee for all days is 40 Euro for students, and 70 Euro for faculty, staff, and community members. A single day registration is 15 Euro.

Organizers: Peter-Erwin Jansen, M.A. Philosophy (International Herbert Marcuse Society, Marcuse/Löwenthal Archive, Koblenz University of Applied Sciences)
Dr. Inka Engel (Educational and Research Community on Herbert Marcuse and Leo Löwenthal, University of Koblenz)

Coordinating Team: Alexander Neupert, and Lisa Doppler, Thomas Gebauer, Taylor Hines, Robert Kirsch, Maley, Harold Marcuse, Terr Maley, Sarah Surak.

Conference Partners and Sponsors: The International Herbert Marcuse Society (IHMS), Institut für Sozialforschung (IfS), Archivzentrum der Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität, ASTA and Editors of the ASTA newspaper/Universität Frankfurt, Bildungs- und Forschungsgemeinschaft zu Herbert Marcuse und Leo Löwenthal (HMLL e.V.)/Frankfurt, zu Klampen Verlag/Hannover-Springe, Raiders of the Storm/Frankfurt.

Please submit abstracts to: