Theodor W. Adorno Award

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The prize is presented to Judith Butler in 2012

The Theodor W. Adorno Award (Theodor-W.-Adorno-Preis) is a German award intended to recognize outstanding achievement in philosophy, theatre, music, and film. It was established by the city of Frankfurt in 1977 to commemorate the sociologist and philosopher Theodor Adorno, who had taught at the University of Frankfurt for twenty years. The award is conferred every three years on September 11, Adorno's birthday. The prize money is 50,000 Euro.

Laureates[edit]

Adorno award criticism[edit]

The 2012 award to Jewish academic Judith Butler, the first time in 30 years it was awarded to a woman, has come under criticism from Israel’s Ambassador to Germany Yakov Hadas-Handelsman, the director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center office in Jerusalem, Dr. Efraim Zuroff,[5] and the German Central Council of Jews because of Butler's remarks in support of an academic boycott against Israel.[6] Judith Butler commented on the reasons behind her support of the academic boycott campaign stating: "Others may interpret the boycott differently, but I have no problem collaborating with Israeli scholars and artists as long as we do not participate in any Israeli institution or have Israeli state monies support our collaborative work. The reason, of course, is that the academic and cultural boycott seeks to put pressure on all those cultural institutions that have failed to oppose the occupation and struggle for equal rights and the rights of the dispossessed, all those cultural institutions that think it is not their place to criticize their government for these practices, all of them that understand themselves to be above or beyond this intractable political condition. In this sense, they do contribute to an unacceptable status quo." [7] Phyllis Chesler openly attacked the Adorno Prize committee, claiming the Award to Butler constitutes a ‘new anti-Semitism.'[8] Butler responded saying that "she did not take attacks from German Jewish leaders personally. Rather, she wrote, the attacks are directed against everyone who is critical against Israel and its current policies.""[9] Since 2006 Israeli soldiers, who call their group Breaking the Silence, have organized against the systematic violence, including the destruction of Palestinian houses and infrastructure and consider themselves to be working for social justice. Their testimony includes the use of state radio to misinform the population about state-sponsored violance by Israel in the occupied areas of Palestine, which was also one ot the main techniques employed by the Nazis to control public opinion by misreporting events.[10] The Award in 2015 to Georg Didi-Huberman is the first time it is given to a curator, who is best known for his book dealing with images of Shoah, 'Images in Spite of All: Four Photographs from Auschwitz.' [11] He has made public statements, including during visits to Israel, stating he is against the academic boycott of Israel. Miki Kratsman, an artist whose work has been focusing for years on "extras" in the Israeli reality, was surprised by Didi-Huberman's disassociation from politics during his lectures in Israel.[12] The scientist Stephen Hawking also made headlines in 2013 by refusing to attend an academic conference in Israel in support of the boycott, causing outrage and an outpouring of hate messages, including ones that belittled his disability.[13][14]

References[edit]

External links[edit]