DIEDERICHSEN, Diedrich; FRANKE, Anselm (eds.)
Love and Ethnology – The Colonial Dialectic of Sensitivity (after Hubert Fichte)
This publication documents a long-term, touring exhibition project on the critical reception of Hubert Fichte's ethnographic travel literature. This large-scale initiative brings forth a multi-faceted debate on colonial modernism, ethnography, poetry and sexuality.
Can the ethnological observations and feelings on Afro-diasporic cultures of a German writer be “restituted”? What are the possibilities and limits of using self-reflexion and gay sexuality as research tools?
Since 2017, the exhibition and publication project Hubert Fichte: Love and Ethnology has followed this question through Hubert Fichte's cycle of novels Die Geschichte der Empfindlichkeit (The History of Sensitivity). Fascinated by Afro-diasporic arts and religions, Fichte (1935–1986) traveled to cities such as Salvador da Bahia, Santiago de Chile, Dakar, New York, and Lisbon. For the project, translations from his Geschichte der Empfindlichkeit became the basis for critical local receptions and new artistic works in these cities. The final exhibition “Love and Ethnology – The Colonial Dialectic of Sensitivity (after Hubert Fichte)” at Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin presents these reflections against the background of the relationship between ethnology and the aesthetic avant-garde in post-war West Germany.
This publication brings together essays, artistic text contributions, and a glossary that explains Hubert Fichte's theoretical vocabulary. These are supplemented by curatorial statements from the past project stations in Salvador da Bahia, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago de Chile, Dakar, New York, and Lisbon, as well as extensive photo series depicting the artistic works from the exhibition at HKW. [publisher's note]