Centre for Cosmopolitan Studies, University of St Andrews

“Come to terms with what all human beings have in common, for better or for worse, and see, beneath the surface of cultural differences, comparable imperatives, logics, and dispositions.”

Michael Jackson

“We are all human. Don’t take more specific classifications seriously.”

Ernest Gellner

The University of St Andrews Centre for Cosmopolitan Studies (CCS) exists to explore the implications and the possibilities of cosmopolitanism, which is understood as compassing: the complexity of society and culture globally; the experience of the individual citizen; and the openness of a free and just society. The Centre promotes an existentially sensitive social science which seeks to place individual experience at the core of an appreciation of contemporary social and cultural milieux, for the purpose of adumbrating the ethical space of the citizen in a plural and fluid society.

The Centre convenes seminars and conferences, hosts visiting fellows, funds studentships and publishes the results of its research. The Centre also collaborates with other researchers, projects and research institutions. In all it promotes deliberation on a set of issues (identity, social inclusion, multiculturalism, liberalism, migration, sovereignty, freedom, belonging) fundamental for a knowledge of, and purchase upon, the individual membership of society and culture in the twenty-first century.

Cosmopolitan Studies is an ontological project, approaching the human, its capacities and liabilities beyond differences of social, cultural and historical condition.

Cosmopolitan Studies is a methodological project, endeavouring to find ways best to know the human.

Cosmopolitan Studies is a political project, understanding the freedoms and rights of human expression over and above the contingencies of social, cultural and historical circumstances.

For further information, contact:

Dr Daniel M. Knight
Director, Centre for Cosmopolitan Studies
Department of Social Anthropology
University of St. Andrews
North Street
St. Andrews
KY16 9AL

Telephone: +44(0)1334 462985
Email: dmk3@st-andrews.ac.uk

Latest news and events

Orientations to the Future Collection

Daniel M. Knight has just published an American Ethnologist Collection on “Orientations to the Future”. The papers are an outcome of the 2018 Ladislav Holy Memorial Trust and Centre for Cosmopolitan Studies conference. Contributions from Rebecca Bryant, Stef Jansen,...

The Anthropology of the Future

This book, by Rebecca Bryant and Daniel M. Knight, presents the concept of ‘orientations’ as a way to study everyday life. It analyses six main orientations – anticipation, expectation, speculation, potentiality, hope, and destiny – which represent different ways in...