Boris Buden

2024-04-10 | Boris Buden. “Past: An Introduction to the Problem”

A lecture by Boris Buden with a guest appearance by Olivera Jokić (via zoom) 

Wednesday, April 10, Göteborgs Litteraturhus,
drinks from 6pm, lecture at 6.30

“This is not a book about the past. It is an introduction to a problem called the past.” (Boris Buden)

Boris Buden is a cultural critic and philosopher based in Berlin. He teaches cultural theory at Bauhaus University and regularly publishes essays in German, English and French. Additionally, he became known for his work as a translator, specifically in bringing Freud’s writings into the Croatian language. His latest books include Transition to Nowhere: Art in History After 1989 (Archive Books, 2020). This lecture is based on his newly published Past: An Introduction to the Problem.

Olivera Jokić is an Associate Professor of English at John Jay College of the City University of New York. She writes and teaches on gender, colonialism, and eighteenth- and nineteenth-century literature.

”… But what if the reality was quite different? And what if we are unable today to recognize this difference, to deal with it critically, and to incorporate its meaning into our historical experience? To repeat: into our historical experience! note into the past. Our past as we know it would not stand for such a difference anyway….” (Boris Buden, in the preface to Past: An Introduction to the Problem, 2024)

In this book launch lecture Buden will examine the social, cultural, and intellectual heritage of former Yugoslavia. It is part of a research program that provides a new reading of the progressive practices of the Neo-Avant Garde of today, and opens a new way of communication between these practices and contemporary art production.

Organized by (Novi Sad) in collaboration with Kulturtreger and Multimedia Institute based in Zagreb, and Glänta and Göteborgs Litteraturhus, within the project “Peripheral Visions: Towards Trans(l)national Publishing Culture”.

Travel lab is organized by in collaboration with Glänta. The project is supported by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union. The participation is co-funded by the Ministry of Culture of Republic of Serbia, Administration for culture City of Novi Sad, Foundation for Art Initiatives.

The book was produced by

Boris Buden, who wrote the essays and conducted conversations with Želimir Žilnik. Želimir Žilnik, who answered Boris Buden’s questions, orally and in writing. Hito Steyerl, who recorded conversations between BB and ŽŽ. Olivera Jokić, who translated the book into English, re-edited and significantly improved the text., the book’s initiators, who edited, redacted, and coordinated the creation of the book.


New Media; Novi Sad, Serbia, ISBN 978-86-88567-41-1
Multimedia Institute – MaMa, Zagreb, Croatia, ISBN (mi2) 978-953-8469-13-8
Iskra Books, Madison, Wisconsin, USA, ISBN 979-8-8691-9071-0