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Petra Rethmann

NIAS fellow

Project title

The Future of Liberalism in Germany and Beyond

Project description

Petra Rethmann uses ethnographic and archival research to explore the future of liberalism in a world facing political tensions, military conflicts, and climate change. She asks what liberalism can achieve and where it falls short in the midst of struggling economies, failed wars, and environmental crises. By focusing on Germany, a key Western-liberal country in Europe, her book project examines issues like historical and political narratives and imaginations, right-wing authoritarianism and militarism, and Green environmental politics.

Rather than judging liberalism as right or wrong, Rethmann aims to understand how it opens up or limits possibilities for future politics, ethics, and societies. It’s designed to be useful for students, academics, activists, and the general public, providing socially relevant insights.

Selected publications

  • Russia: Anthropological Insights. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. 2018
  • Imagining Our Futures in Different Keys. Social Anthropology 28 (2): 339 – 355. 2020
  • Russia after COVID-19: Challenges and Possible Paths Toward a Future. In Understanding International Politics after COVID-19: Challenges, Issues, and Perspectives. Edited by Amir M. Esmaeli. Teheran: Sadiq University Press. Pp. 29 – 49. 2020