IAS Distinguished Lecture / Division of Humanities Joint Lecture
The Politics of Humiliation: Historical Trajectories


In this lecture, the speaker will discuss the power of public shaming and humiliation in the modern world. Such strategies were either meant to punish and reintegrate a person who had violated social norms, or to debase and stigmatize those whom others wanted to exclude from groups or society at large. The talk follows the development of such practices since the late eighteenth century in legal, education, and foreign policies, mainly with regard to Europe and China. It focuses on the concept of human dignity and why this has become paramount.


About the speaker

Prof. Ute Frevert received her PhD from Bielefeld University in 1982. She was appointed Professor of Modern History by the Free University of Berlin in 1991 before moving to the University of Konstanz in 1992. In 1997, she returned to Bielefeld University as Professor of History and joined Yale University as Professor of German History in 2003. In 2008, she returned to Germany and was appointed as the Scientific Member of the Max Planck Society. She was also appointed as Director of the Center for the History of Emotions in the Max Planck Institute for Human Development.

Prof. Frevert’s research interests include Modern Social, Political and Cultural History; History of Emotions; and Gender History. She is one of the world’s leading modern historians, and is widely known for her contributions to social and gender history.

Prof. Frevert was elected a Member of the German National Academy of Sciences-Leopoldina in 2004, and a Fellow of the Berlin Institute for Advanced Study (Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin) in 2004. She also received the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize by the German Research Foundation for her research on Modern History in 1998.

Speaker(s) Professor Ute FREVERT
Director, Max Planck Institute for Human Development – Center for the History of Emotions
Date 20 Feb 2019 (Wednesday)
Time 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Venue Chow Tak Sin Lecture Theater (LTG)
Language English
Sponsor Institute for Advanced Study; School of Humanities and Social Science
Further Information