Wolfgang Welsch – Transculturality

In his text Transculturality – the Puzzling Form of Cultures Today Wolfgang Welsch explains in a few words Wittgensteins concept of culture:

“Philosophically, the one person who provides the greatest help for a transcultural concept of culture, however, is Wittgenstein. He outlined an on-principle pragmatically-based concept of culture, which is free of ethnic consolidation and unreasonable demands for homogeneity. According to Wittgenstein, culture is at hand wherever practices in life are shared. The basic task is not to be conceived of as an understanding of foreign cultures, but as an interaction with foreignness. […] Culture in Wittgenstein’s sense is, by its very structure, open to new connexions and to further feats of integration. To this extent, a cultural concept reformulated along Wittgenstein’s lines seems to me to be particularly apt to today’s conditions.”

“I take this to be very important. Basically I think it is evident – yet it tends to be overlooked incurrent reflection. For in modernity we got used to thinking that everything is strictly bound toits cultural context. We take all experience and cognition to be strictly determined by their cultural framework and hence restricted to it. This is the typically modern axiom – or dogma – behind the contemporary relativism, contextualism and culturalism dominant in the humanities and in cultural studies today. But with this axiom we are blinding ourselves theoretically to the obviously non culture-bound, but transcultural potential of outstanding works or conceptions.”

Rethinking identity in the age of globalization – a transcultural perspective

“Transculturality – the Puzzling Form of Cultures Today” Wolfgang Welsch
From: Spaces of Culture: City, Nation, World, ed. by Mike Featherstone and Scott Lash, London: Sage 1999, 194-213.

Wolfgang Welsch, Rethinking identity in the age of globalization – a transcultural perspective
Aesthetics & Art Science, ed. Taiwan Association of Aesthetics and Art Science, No. 1 (2002), 85-94.

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