Floor van Spaendonck on Sat, 15 Apr 2006 17:23:08 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime-ann> INVITATION 18th of April Cyberasia Part 2: Asian Cyberfundamentalism

ASiA, IIAS, Leiden University and Waag Society organize
Cyberasia Part 2: Asian Cyberfundamentalism

Tuesday April 18, 20.00 – 22.00 hrs
Waag Society, Nieuwmarkt 4, Amsterdam
Entrance: free
Language: English
Livestream: http://connect.waag.org

The Dutch National Bureau for Intelligence and Security (AIVD) has recently declared the Internet to be a major force behind the emergence of religious fundamentalism in society, and indeed, radical religious groups around the globe eagerly employ new technologies to recruit new members, advocate their views and attack perceived enemies. Is this caused by, or at odds with, the perceived open and liberating character of the Internet? Is the AIVD’s anxiety towards the Internet perhaps rooted in an official dystopian view of new technologies as media that proliferate messages in an uncontrollable fashion? Of course, counterforces emerge as well, so is the medium itself of particular importance? Does the Internet change religion, and religion change the Internet? Starting from case studies of the fervent use that Hindu and Muslim fundamentalists make of the Internet, Asian Cyberfundamentalism focuses on these developments. Indian Internet activist Harsh Kapoor, Malyasian political scientist, academic and human rights activist Farish Noor and Dutch anthropologist of religion Peter van der Veer will discuss the fundamentalist uses of cyberspace and search for possible counterforces. This evening is moderated by Patricia Spyer from Leiden University and will present a unique view on the religious uses of the Internet, and provides a platform to discuss possible tactics of resistance, either online or offline.

Cyberasia is a series of three seminars that brings together Asian activists, academics and industry pioneers to reflect on contemporary political, religious and playful uses of new technologies. Together, they showcase the current state of Internet affairs in Asia, opening up a unique meeting ground beyond the “Western” world. The previous seminar of March 29 focused on the political uses of the Internet, while the third and last session on May 10 deals with Asian Cybergames.

The Speakers:
Dr. Farish (Badrol Hisham) Ahmad has been researching and writing on the phenomenon of political Islam and transnational religio-political and educational networks for several years. His research looks at the transnational networks and linkages between modern Islamic universities in Southeast and South Asia, raising questions about the concept of Islamic modernity as well as its global-political implications. Dr. Noor’s activist-related work and writings have focused on the issues of human rights, press freedom, the debate on secularism and democracy, as well as gender issues.
Dr. Harsh Kapoor is a renowned Indian Internet activist, engaged in the defence of democracy and tolerance in South Asia. Initially trained as a sociologist, he has been interested in social implications of new technologies and their democratic use. He has helped set up the South Asia Citizens Web; a Web site that provides visibility to dissenting opinions from within South Asian civil society. He has also helped set up South Asians Against Nukes, a citizen's platform on the Net.
Prof. Dr. Peter van de Veer is university professor at the University of Utrecht and has published widely in the field of religion and nationalism in India, his current research focuses on the societal role of spirituality in India and China.
Prof. Dr. Patricia Spyer is professor of sociology and anthropology of contemporary Indonesia at Leiden University and specializes in the study of the role of old and new media in the processes of reformation in Indonesian society.

For reservation: reserveren@waag.org
For more information: Dr. Jeroen de Kloet (moderator, IIAS) b.j.dekloet@uva.nl
Livestream: http://connect.waag.org
IIAS: www.iias.nl

Asian Cyberfundamentalism is part of the project 'Towards a culture of open networks' this
lecture is being produced with the support of the European Union's EU-
India Economic Cross Cultural Programme.

floor van spaendonck | waag society | nieuwmarkt 4 | 1012 cr amsterdam
p+31 20-5579898 | f+31 20 5579880| floor@waag.org | www.waag.org

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