About the project
The online journal Hubert Fichte: Love and Ethnology accompanies the eponymous cooperation between Goethe-Institut and Haus der Kulturen der Welt , with the support of the S. Fischer Stiftung and the S. Fischer Verlag and with the collaboration of numerous partners, and runs from 2017 to 2019 at the following exhibition and presentation sites: Lisbon, Salvador de Bahia, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago de Chile, New York, Dakar, and Berlin. The point of departure for Hubert Fichte: Love and... More…
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28/10/2017  Hubert Fichte  Rio de Janeiro
Forschungsbericht (Research Report, excerpt)

Hubert Fichte’s Forschungsbericht (Research Report) represents a turning point in Die Geschichte der Empfindlichkeit (The History of Sensibility): Irma and Jäcki, the researcher-photographer „ethnologist couple,“ reach the limits of their alternative ethnology. Ever more skeptical, Jäcki immerses himself in methodological questions. According to Fichte’s editor Gisela Lindemann in her „Editor’s Note,“ the novel „describes and stages (…) the collapse of every West German (and European) attempt to respond to the challenge of the multi-faceted suffering of people in the Third World in an engaged way.“ But the promise of a breakthrough seems to be functioning, everything else turns into literature, from which he actually wished to distance himself. „That’s it. Research Report. A novel. (…) The sciences are novels about protagonists such as Hegel, Freud, Lacan. The authors are the titles.“ The novel depicts a journey to Belize made by Fichte and Mau in February 1980 and was completed in April 1981. It constitutes Volume XV of Die Geschichte der Empfindlichkeit. More…

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26/10/2017  Editors  Berlin

In 2019 an exhibition curated by artistic directors Diedrich Diederichsen and Anselm Franke will take place at Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin, which will take up the themes and stances of the six preceding project stations and explore their historical and current connections. More…

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26/10/2017  Editors  New York

A project curated by Yesomi Umolu is scheduled for 2018 at the art spaces Participant INC and E-Flux Space, drawing on Hubert Fichte’s essay collection Die Schwarze Stadt. Glossen (1990) and its translation into English (Black City: Glosses, publisher: Sternberg Press). More…

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22/10/2017  Peter Braun  Salvador da Bahia
Salvador da Bahia. In Search of an Ethnology of Sensibility

The Germanist and media theorist Peter Braun describes the emergence of the ethnological interrogations and practices which accompany the route taken by Hubert Fichte, as derived from his experiences in Salvador da Bahia in 1971 and 1972. Not only does Braun consider the content of the novel Explosion, he examines this work as it relates to Fichte’s Xango, Petersilie (Parsley), and Lazarus und die Waschmaschine (Lazarus and the Washing Machine), all three of which appeared during the author and ethnologist’s lifetime, prior to Die Geschichte der Empfindlichkeit (The History of Sensibility). Braun provides an extremely readable introduction to the history of candomblé and other religions of West African origin which derive from the Yorubá tradition and which Fichte would go on to study in South America and in the Caribbean. More…

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23/09/2017  Jürgen Bock  Lisboa
Mistake! Mistake! said the rooster… and stepped down from the duck

How are we to launch a project on Hubert Fichte and his and Leonore Mau’s great ethnographic project? Jürgen Bock, co-curator of Hubert Fichte: Love and Ethnology, provides an introduction to the group exhibition, Mistake! Mistake! said the rooster… and stepped down from the duck, which he curated for the project’s Lisbon station at Lumiar Cité. A passage though ideas, plans, and entanglements, proceeding from the translation of Fichte’s Eine Glückliche Liebe into Portuguese, and a return to the starting point of this key work. More…

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29/10/2017  Diedrich Diederichsen  Lisboa
Sexuality, Torture, and Bi-continentality: Resistance, Theory, and Political Heuristic in Hubert Fichte’s Die Geschichte der Empfindlichkeit (The History of Sensibility)

In this essay, originally commissioned by Jürgen Bock, curator of the project’s first station Lisbon, cultural critic Diedrich Diederichsen pinpoints three themes: sexuality, torture, and bi-continentality. These themes run through the entire Geschichte der Empfindlichkeit (The History of Sensibility), and are present early on in Eine Glückliche Liebe (A Happy Love), before culminating in the novel Forschungsbericht (Research Report): sexuality as a utopian opportunity for physical, global, human unification; torture as the physical reality of oppression; and bi-continentality as a working concept for research into what would later come to be termed the Black Atlantic, the African diaspora. More…

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27/10/2017  Peter Braun  Lisboa
Sesimbra – At the Edge of Europe

The Germanist and media theorist Peter Braun presents the themes and narrative strands of the novel Eine Glückliche Liebe (A Happy Love). He contextualizes them within their formative conditions as well as how they themselves appear in the novel. Braun situates the work as a station in the bio-geography that Hubert Fichte and Leonore Mau would go on to conduct, across the Atlantic and along the African and Afro-diasporic littoral in Die Geschichte der Empfindlichkeit (The History of Sensibility): a point of departure. More…

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26/10/2017  Editors  Santiago de Chile

An exhibition curated by Mario Navarro is scheduled for September and October 2018 at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (14.9. – 14.10.2018)  which features Hubert Fichte’s recently translated into Spanish novel Explosion (1993) and his radio feature Chile: Experiment auf die Zukunft (1972; Chile: An Experiment for the Future). More…

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26/10/2017  Editors  Dakar

A collaboration with Koyo Kouoh (RAW Material Company, curation) and Magueye Kassé (conference and translation of Psyche), the station in Dakar (5. – 20.10.2018)  departs from Fichte’s book Psyche, and extends to Fichte and Mau’s lengthy stays in countries such as Benin, Togo, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Guinea Bissau, and Tanzania, as well as Fichte’s  investigations into medical and psychiatric practices. More…

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18/10/2017  Manuela Ribeiro Sanches  Lisboa
Read over the Shoulder, or Ménage à Trois. Hubert Fichte, Leonore Mau and ‘their Native’

Eine Glückliche Liebe (A Happy Love) is the result and testimony of Hubert Fichte’s and Leonore Mau’s stay in Portugal during the early 1960s, the first stop on a journey that, beginning in Brazil, would take them to other places linked to the cultures of the African diaspora. Two readings of the book are possible: one that privileges the objective contexts of the described places; another that considers the subjective processes involved in the perception of the observed world and the construction of the corresponding narrative. Although at a first glance Fichte’s writing does not seem to disclose such processes, a deeper reading allows them to surface. The present text draws on these two perspectives, but adds to them a distinct, equally subjective, point of view. By introducing a third element in this ‘happy love ’ – the observed ‘native woman’ – fascinated and disturbed by the proposed reading – takes revenge on the anthropologist, reading his text over his shoulder. The observers would most probably not have minded this ménage à trois. More…

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