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The inevitable march of history, or something that has been tried before?

The term ”woke” has been used in various contexts to describe the act of seeing the world as it truly is, both religiously and ideologically. More recently, it has been assigned as a label for a political force that is difficult to define but easy to recognise.

This seminar sought to bring together interdisciplinary perspectives on wokeness, exploring how old questions are taking a new form, and how we can gain a comprehensive understanding of its narratives, beliefs, and goals. Are there similarities with religious movements and practices? What are its historical, theoretical, and ideological roots in Marxism, Critical Theory, and Social Justice? How can we analyse the political, psychological, and sociological implications of how wokeness operates today?

These ideas are influencing our institutions, academia, the media, and corporations, and the cultural sphere, and there are potentially harsh consequences for those who do not comply. Is this the inevitable march of history, or is it something that has been tried before?


Andrei Znamenski

Professor of History at University of Memphis

Svante Nordin

Professor of History of Ideas at Lund University

James Patterson

Chair of the Politics Department, Associate Professor of Politics, Ave Maria University

Stephen Hicks

Professor of Philosophy at Rockford University, Illinois, USA, Executive Director of the Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship, and Senior Scholar at The Atlas Society

Marc Sidwell

Senior Fellow at the New Culture Forum

Fredrik Segerfeldt


Matthew Goodwin

Professor of Politics in the School of Politics and International Relations at the University of Kent

Stephen R Soukup

Vice President, The Political Forum

Nina Solomin

Culture Editor, Fokus

Adrian Wooldridge

Global Business Columnist at Bloomberg Opinion

Gustaf Lindblad

PhD Student, Gothenburg University

Eric Kaufmann

Professor of Politics, Birkbeck, University of London

Adam Cwejman

Political Editor, Göteborgsposten