Dr Kristoff Kerl is this year's CSMCH-IASH Fellow, in collaborations with the Centre for the Study of Modern and Contemporary History at the University of Edinburgh. The CSMCH blog features a great introduction to Kristoff's work: http://research.shca.ed.ac.uk/csmch/2020/02/03/introducing-kristoff-kerl-csmch-iash-fellow-2019-20/
During his time at the CSMCH, Kristoff will be exploring the emergence of countercultures in western countries such as the United States, Great Britain and Western Germany in the 1960s and 1970s. Differing from other factions of the New Left, members of countercultural milieus tried to initiate a cultural revolution and create alternative spaces beyond the influence of capitalist sociation. They countered what they understood as the human alienation in capitalist consumer societies with a politics of the self that was supposed to establish solidarity among communities oriented towards sustainability, ‘naturalness’ and holism. In this context, body politics and body practices played a crucial role. In particular, Kristoff is interested in how counterculturists conceived of ‘politics of ecstasy’ as a means to liberate people from so-called capitalist alienation.