learning and dreaming together through social uncertainty

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The following teaching resource is a 24-hour score for a pedagogical experiment that proposes ways of learning through uncertainty and holding space collectively in uncertain times.

Hosted by the Zurich University of the Arts and developed by Michelle Teran (Research Centre WdKA|Lectoraat Social Practices) and Marc Herbst (Journal for Aesthetics & Protest).

This pedagogical experiment considers distinct temporalities and orientations for uncertainty in living and learning. On the one hand, there is an orientation of the self as a feeling/thinking vessel fraught with uncertainties and vibrations. On the other, we are looking at ways of orienting oneself in the world and what it means to be connected or feel something in relation to the present. Turning to education, an educational approach based on progress and moving forward, problem-solving and innovation, competition and mastery, is not something the world needs right now as it replicates a Business as Usual attitude that perpetuates harm and harmful systems. And what would it take for the institutionalized spaces of higher education to make space for collective practices of critical generosity, reciprocity, respect, and togetherness?

Some animating questions:

  • What is social practice if not actually socially working and caring through our collective dreams?
  • How might we deal with uncertainties collaboratively, as a prerequisite for a learning process?
  • How do we want it to feel in the space between us? (to think, to learn, to research, to live together in uncertainty)
  • How can we develop the capacity to sit with that discomfort of feeling overwhelmed, anxious or rudderless when facing the uncertainty of uncertain times?
  • What are our commitments to ourselves and others through uncertainty?

Image credit: Marc Herbst