This project provides a framework for theoretical reflection of a methodological, conceptual and historiographical nature and relates to society in general and the manifestations of the ‘plural’ in particular. It draws on the different field approaches deployed in the programme’s areas of research, on the one hand, and on the frontal and comparative study of the concepts in vogue in the human and social sciences, on the other.

Several types of reflection are engaged in around the explanatory paradigms that are common today, for example multiculturalism, cosmopolitanism and diversity. The paradigms of globalization and the multiple modernities that characterize the contemporary world are examined from the perspective of humanity’s past experiences.

A large number of anthropological, sociological and historical concepts have been developed to describe and explain the phenomena that arise when two or more cultures come into contact with each other. They borrow from each other, resist each other or assimilate. Behind these observable and partly quantifiable results, processes for the production of meaning are established, and it is these processes that interest us in particular. How do societies create symbolism, under which conditions and through the application of which methods? Between acculturation, bricolage and connections, which analytical criteria should be applied and in which context?

The historical ruptures – the events – in the life of plural societies will also form the object of a new study, an innovative approach will be applied in the evaluation of the categories of ‘before’ and ‘after’. Conflict and resilience, crisis and emergence from crisis, revolution and post-revolution – all facts whose modelling also obeys the logic of plurality.

Associated scientific events

  • Colloque international « Cosmopolitanism Revisited: Comparative Perspectives on Urban Diversity from the Gulf and Beyond », (Paris, October 11-12, 2017 )
  • « Linguistic Landscape/s : quels ancrages disciplinaires dans les univers de recherche anglophone et francophone ? », (F. Mourlhon-Dallies and I. Saint-Georges papers) in Conference Les désignations disciplinaires et leurs contenus : le paradigme des Studies (Université Paris 13, January, 19, 2017).
  • Workshop MAGMET « Urban cosmopolitanisms: methodological and theoretical issues » (Paris, October 17, 2016)
  • Conference « Legacies of Shmuel Noah Eisenstadt : from Philology to Sociology » (Paris, January 26-27, 2016)
  • Conference « Cosmopolitisme et sociétés plurielles », (Paris, October 15-16, 2015)
  • Conference « Le débat sur le multiculturalisme est-il clos ? », with Michel Wieviorka, FMSH (Paris, March 2, 2015)