Ceremony (Burial of an Undead World)

How can modernity, and the developments of global capitalism, be described in the same terms as “other cosmologies”, which are commonly understood as pre-modern belief systems? This publication responds to two seminal texts by Sylvia Wynter, “The Ceremony Must Be Found” (1984) and “The Ceremony Found” (2015), using them as the basis to provoke a discussion of cosmology beyond the modern order of knowledge. The book includes several commentaries upon these two texts exploring the role that origin stories play in conditioning the categories of our thought, as well as our language and perception. The editors are particularly interested in demonstrating how Wynter’s paradigm of a “human ecumene” establishes a counter-universalism capable of unhinging modernist and capitalist modernity. For this, Wynter argues, a ceremony is needed.

Publication with contributions by Mario Bellátin, James Burton, Alice Creischer & Andreas Siekmann, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Giulia Damiani, Maria José de Abreu, Mariana Castillo Deball, Esther Figueroa, Anselm Franke, Cécile Fromont, Elisa Giuliano, Ayesha Hameed, Whess Harman, Aaron Kamugisha, Catherine Keller, Joshua Chambers Letson, Canisia Lubrin, Leora Maltz-Leca, Felix Mayer, Patricia Reed, Rachel O’Reilly, Denise Ryner, Ho Rui An, Jon Solomon, Kerstin Stakemeier, Ana Teixeira Pinto, Claire Tancons, Elena Vogman, Michael Washington, Zairong Xiang, and Dorothy Zinn.

The book accompanies the eponymous exhibition at Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW) from October 23 to December 30, 2022.