Civilisation and Moral Economy in the 21st Century
Field research pictures
Sudeshna ChakiWomen selling dry fish at a market in Palghar, Maharashtra, India.
Anne Erita Venåsen BertaEvent in a generational family firm, Denmark.
Lale Yalçın-HeckmannRose pickers in Isparta, Turkey.
Ceren DenizShoemaker in his workshop in Konya, Turkey.
Luca SzücsBelievers pray in a procession of the 'Our lady of the Snow' monastery in Szeged, Hungary.
Laura HornigAnnual Thadingyut festival at a Pagoda in Pathein, Myanmar.
Daria TereshinaCleaning the church in Holy Trinity St.Sergius Lavra, Russia
Lizhou HaoWorkers in a family owned sport clothing factory in Shishi, China.
Sylvia TerpeSmall shop for sewing supplies in Halle, Germany.
Beata ŚwitekIncense at Sensōji, Tokyo.
Ivan RajkovićOld Zastava’s industrial complex, Kragujevac.
Chris HannSecession Architecture at the Main Square in Kiskunhalas.
The research group and the point of departure
The project “Realising Eurasia: civilisation and moral economy in the 21st century” (REALEURASIA) was launched on 1st July 2014. After a year of preparation, the 7 Ph.D. students spent the academic year 2015-6 carrying out field research in various cities across Eurasia. Eurasia is understood in the classical sense of global historians as the super-continent which embraces the whole of Europe and the whole of Asia. In addition to core funding provided by the European Research Council (ERC Grant Agreement n.340854), two Ph.D. projects in Northern and Central Europe are supported by the MPI.
This comparative project is primarily rooted in the theories and methods of economic anthropology, but it also sets out to renew links to historical sociology and adjacent fields. The framework is "civilisation" in the universal spirit of Marcel Mauss, with Eurasia-specific inflections drawn primarily from Max Weber’s work on the “world religions”. The research team will synthesise the concepts of moral economy (Thompson) and Wirtschaftsethik (Weber) and operationalise them at multiple levels within the civilisational frame. The project combines detailed ethnographic investigations of family businesses, in towns selected to ensure structural comparability, with attention to the embeddedness of economy in religion, polity, and society as they have evolved together in the longue durée of the Eurasian past.