KC2 Cosmopolitanism Translated into Macedonian

Key Concepts in ICDContinuing translations of Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, today I am posting KC#2: Cosmopolitanism, which Miriam Sobre-Denton wrote for publication in English in 2014, and which Emilija Jovanovska has now translated into Macedonian.

As always, all Key Concepts are available as free PDFs; just click on the thumbnail to download. Lists of Key Concepts organized chronologically by publication date and number, alphabetically by concept, and by languages into which they have been translated, are available, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers.

KC2 Cosmopolitanism_MacedonianSobre-Denton, M. (2020). Cosmopolitanism [Macedonian]. (E. Jovanovska, trans). Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, 2. Available from:
https://centerforinterculturaldialogue.files.wordpress.com/2020/07/kc2-cosmopolitanism_macedonian.pdf

If you are interested in translating one of the Key Concepts, please contact me for approval first because dozens are currently in process. As always, if there is a concept you think should be written up as one of the Key Concepts, whether in English or any other language, propose it. If you are new to CID, please provide a brief resume. This opportunity is open to masters students and above, on the assumption that some familiarity with academic conventions generally, and discussion of intercultural dialogue specifically, are useful.

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue


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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

KC2: Cosmopolitanism Translated into Portuguese

Key Concepts in ICDContinuing translations of Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, today I am posting KC#2: Cosmopolitanism, which Miriam Sobre-Denton wrote for publication in English in 2014, and which Filipa Subtil has now translated into Portuguese.

As always, all Key Concepts are available as free PDFs; just click on the thumbnail to download. Lists of Key Concepts organized chronologically by publication date and number, alphabetically by concept, and by languages into which they have been translated, are available, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers.

KC2 Cosmpolitanism_PortugueseSobre-Denton, M. (2018). Cosmopolitanism (Portuguese). (F. Subtil, trans). Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, 2. Retrieved from:
https://centerforinterculturaldialogue.files.wordpress.com/2018/06/kc2-cosmopolitanism_portuguese.pdf

If you are interested in translating one of the Key Concepts, please contact me for approval first because dozens are currently in process. As always, if there is a concept you think should be written up as one of the Key Concepts, whether in English or any other language, propose it. If you are new to CID, please provide a brief resume. This opportunity is open to masters students and above, on the assumption that some familiarity with academic conventions generally, and discussion of intercultural dialogue specifically, are useful.

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

KC2 Cosmopolitanism Translated into Greek

Key Concepts in ICDContinuing translations of Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, today I am posting KC#2: Cosmopolitanism, which Miriam Sobre-Denton wrote for publication in English in 2014, and which Anastasia Karakitsou has now translated into Greek.

As always, all Key Concepts are available as free PDFs; just click on the thumbnail to download. Lists of Key Concepts organized chronologically by publication date and number, alphabetically by concept, and by languages into which they have been translated, are available, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers.

KC2 Cosmopolitanism_GreekSobre-Denton, M. (2017). Cosmopolitanism [Greek]. (A. Karakitsou, trans). Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, 2. Available from:
https://centerforinterculturaldialogue.files.wordpress.com/2017/09/kc2-cosmopolitanism_greek.pdf

If you are interested in translating one of the Key Concepts, please contact me for approval first because dozens are currently in process. As always, if there is a concept you think should be written up as one of the Key Concepts, whether in English or any other language, propose it. If you are new to CID, please provide a brief resume. This opportunity is open to masters students and above, on the assumption that some familiarity with academic conventions generally, and discussion of intercultural dialogue specifically, are useful.

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Key Concept #2: Cosmopolitanism Translated into Persian

Key Concepts in ICDContinuing translations of Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, today I am posting KC2: Cosmopolitanism, which Miriam-Sobre-Denton wrote in English in 2014 as the first in the series, and which Ramin Hajianfard has now translated into Persian.

As always, all Key Concepts are available as free PDFs; just click on the thumbnail to download. Lists of Key Concepts organized chronologically by publication date and number, alphabetically by concept, and by languages into which they have been translated, are available, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers.

KC2 Cosmopolitanism_ PersianSobre-Denton, M. (2016). Cosmopolitanism [Persian]. (R. Hajianfard, Trans). Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, 2. Available from:
https://centerforinterculturaldialogue.files.wordpress.com/2018/08/kc2-cosmopolitanism_persian-revised.pdf

If you are interested in translating one of the Key Concepts, please contact me for approval first because dozens are currently in process. As always, if there is a concept you think should be written up as one of the Key Concepts, whether in English or any other language, propose it. If you are new to CID, please provide a brief resume. This opportunity is open to masters students and above, on the assumption that some familiarity with academic conventions generally, and discussion of intercultural dialogue specifically, are useful.

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue
intercult.dialogue[at]gmail.com


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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Key Concept #2: Cosmopolitanism Translated into German

Key Concepts in ICDContinuing translations of Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, today I am posting KC#2: Cosmopolitanism, which Miriam Sobre-Denton wrote in English in 2014, and which Dominic Busch has now translated into German.

As always, all Key Concepts are available as free PDFs; just click on the thumbnail to download. Lists of Key Concepts organized chronologically by publication date and number, alphabetically by concept, and by languages into which they have been translated, are available, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers.

KC2 Cosmopolitanism_GermanSobre-Denton, M. (2016). Kosmopolitismus. (D. Busch, Trans). Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, 2. Available from:
https://centerforinterculturaldialogue.files.wordpress.com/2016/10/kc2-cosmopolitanism_german.pdf

If you are interested in translating one of the Key Concepts, please contact me for approval first because dozens are currently in process. As always, if there is a concept you think should be written up as one of the Key Concepts, whether in English or any other language, propose it. If you are new to CID, please provide a brief resume. This opportunity is open to masters students and above, on the assumption that some familiarity with academic conventions generally, and discussion of intercultural dialogue specifically, are useful.

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue #2: Cosmopolitanism by Miriam Sobre-Denton

Key Concepts in ICDThe second issue of Key Concepts in intercultural Dialogue is now available. This is KC2: Cosmopolitanism by Miriam Sobre-Denton. As always, all Key Concepts are available as free PDFs; just click on the thumbnail to download. Lists organized  chronologically by publication date and numberalphabetically by concept in English, and by languages into which they have been translated, are available, as is a page of acknowledgments with the names of all authors, translators, and reviewers.

CosmopolitanismSobre-Denton, M. (2014). Cosmopolitanism. Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue, 2. Available from:
https://centerforinterculturaldialogue.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/key-concept-cosmopolitanism.pdf

The Center for Intercultural Dialogue is publishing a series of short briefs describing Key Concepts in intercultural Dialogue. The logic is that different people, working in different countries and disciplines, use different vocabulary to describe their interests, yet these terms overlap. Our goal is to provide some of the assumptions and history attached to each concept for those unfamiliar with it. As there are other concepts you would like to see included, send an email to the series editor, Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz. If there are concepts you would like to prepare, provide a brief explanation of why you think the concept is central to the study of intercultural dialogue, and why you are the obvious person to write up that concept.


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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Why Cosmopolitanism?

Guest PostsWhy Cosmopolitanism? Guest post by Miriam Sobre-Denton.

Ah, cosmopolitanism.  The first time I found you, I was taking a class on global and transnational ethnography with Dr. Takeyuki Tsuda.  I read an article by Ulf Hannerz titled Cosmopolitans and Locals in World Culture.  He has since retracted many of the things he wrote in this article.  And yet, for the first time, I felt that I had read an intercultural theory (in an anthropology class, no less) that actually applied to my life.  So much of the work I’d done up until this point examined intercultural theories that provided dichotomies.  You were EITHER individualist OR collectivist.  When you travel, you EITHER make friends from your home culture OR your host culture.  You are EITHER a patriot OR an interculturalist.  Profoundly unsatisfying to me, as my experiences often hinged on dialectical tensions and dialogical experiences—those moments that exist between the both/and, rather than the either/or.  Cosmopolitanism was the first theory I’d ever read that said you could be BOTH rooted AND rootless; BOTH local AND global; that maybe you would be the most comfortable with others who experienced similar tensions, who live in spaces of in-between-ness.

And then the backlash set in.  Cosmopolitanism, you were not what I thought you were!  Cosmopolitanism, I was informed, really isn’t a theory of both/and.  This is a theory of exclusivity, of the ‘class consciousness of frequent travelers’; sure there was a sense of both/and-ness, but only for those privileged enough to be able to engage in voluntary sojourns that inevitably involve Western imperialism and cultural commodification.  Why would anyone want to study this concept? I was interrogated about the inherent violence that cosmopolitanism—particularly in its Kantian and previously Greco-Roman Stoic iterations.  This is a theory of global citizenship only accessible to those who have the privilege of being citizens in that kind of world.

And yet, cosmopolitanism, you continued to proliferate, to grow in breadth and depth.  From when I first learned the term in 2006, to the present day (2014), cosmopolitanism theorists flocked to you, across disciplines ranging from sociology and political economy to religious studies and linguistics.  Everyone was coming to the party—which also involved directly addressing the critiques of elitism and western imperialism brought with such ferocity by its opponents.  Forms of vernacular, non-Western, non-elite and critical cosmopolitanism, which have actually been around since its nascence in places like ancient China in the philosophies of Mo Tzu and Mencius, as well as being promoted by the African philosophy of Maat, are resurfacing in work by such scholars as Pnina Werbner, George Delanty and Walter Mignolo.

In intercultural communication, we are, to extend the metaphor, late to your party.  Intercultural communication scholars, particularly those who embrace critical and postcolonial approaches, are only now beginning to accept that this cosmopolitanism a term that is growing in strength, rather than waning.  As the world shrinks and difference becomes something that can no longer be hidden from (if it ever could), cosmopolitanism in its critical and vernacular forms has reemerged as a theory for our time, which insists not that we should all embrace each others’ many and varied values, but rather that we should understand that we all have values, and all hold those values dear to ourselves and the people and things we love.  This kind of dialogic empathy requires hope as an approach to non-binary thinking.  Cosmopolitanism is not a project that can be forced upon people; instead, it must be voluntarily embraced as an ethic of care for the world, from those next door to those across the ocean.   My colleague Dr. Nilanjana Bardhan and I have recently published a book titled Cultivating Cosmopolitanism for Intercultural Communication:  Communicating as Global Citizens, in which we propose cosmopolitanism’s use for our discipline as a space of hopeful dialogue to move from either/or to a space of both/and.  Cosmopolitanism, you may not be the answer, but you certainly deserve to be a part of both the discipline the dialogue.

Download the entire post as a PDF.

Building bridges from theory to practice

I’m currently teaching a course on communication theory.  It’s an undergraduate class, one of those that’s designed to recruit majors.  Recently, one of my students, Joel, raised his hand in class.  You know the type:  he’s talkative, friendly and bright, a bit overbearing, and trying to figure out ‘what does it all mean’.  And that is precisely what he asked in the middle of a lecture/discussion on the importance of communication theory:  “But Miriam, what’s the point?  How does this stuff work in the real world?  Why should I care?”

It’s an age-old question, and one that students and teachers alike often struggle with, particularly in the social sciences and the humanities:  what is the connection between abstract, above-the-clouds theory and the pragmatic, day-to-day life we lead in the world?  But the question is, really, neither mundane nor naïve.  Indeed, I would argue that, in intercultural communication, this question is particularly important and yet woefully under-addressed.  We come up with all of these amazing theories to describe alienation, assimilation, identity processes, cultural difference—but we publish them in reputable journals and exorbitantly-priced textbooks and provide ‘in real life’ examples primarily at the undergraduate level.  Meanwhile, interculturalists who work in the world (outside of academic research), in such areas as refugee counseling, immigration, study abroad, international business, etc., are often working with little-to-no theoretical training, or with outdated approaches to difference such as the U-Curve or Iceberg models.

Where is the dialogue between theorists and practitioners?  What’s the point of doing such great and important work, on theories such as cosmopolitanism, hybridity, critical race theory, and others, if they are only accessible to other academics?  Those of us who identify as critical intercultural scholars are constantly talking about teaching others that difference should be embraced rather than feared, and yet here we are, talking in a language that is only accessible (literally, in terms of access to academic articles; and figuratively, in terms of being able to translate the academese we learn in graduate school) to a small portion of the population: those most like us.

In a discussion of intercultural dialogue, we would do well to listen to questions like Joel’s—the “how does this work” and “why should I care” questions.  If we are the idealists that the field really demands, then shouldn’t we be taking our work outside of the academy and applying it to those who need it, such as those who work with migrant populations, underserved urban youth, patients without health insurance, and on and on?  How can we build bridges between the important work that is done by university researchers and the communities we intend to serve?

I don’t propose that we stop building intercultural theory.  I think the work we do in intercultural research, particularly with today’s critical and postcolonial turns, is imperative to thriving in a world in which difference is coming closer to our doors rather than farther away.  However, with this divide between town and gown, between theory and practice, particularly in intercultural communication research, too much is lost in the translation.  I’d like to call for creative ways of applying academic theory to real world contexts, in ways that get our students jazzed about life beyond college, to see futures for their intercultural understandings of the world they learn in the classroom.  Programs such as Dr. Amy Stornaiuolo’s work with adolescent literacy, called Space2cre8, are heeding such calls, but there is room for so much more.  Students like Joel, those who understand that there could be more to theory than just memorization and regurgitation on an exam, can start to build these bridges, but only once we realize that our work needs to go further.  Let’s get this conversation moving outward, starting by answering Joel’s question:  “You should care because this work is essential to living in a multicultural world.”  This is the opening of our dialogue.

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Miriam S. Sobre-Denton
Assistant Professor | Intercultural Communication
Southern Illinois University Carbondale

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Miriam Sobré-Denton Profile

ProfilesMiriam Sobré-Denton is an assistant professor of intercultural communication at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Her research focuses on critical cosmopolitanism for intercultural communication, education for global competency in underserved communities, white privilege and Latina/o identities, postcolonialism and identity hybridity. Miriam received her Ph.D. from  Arizona State University in 2009; her dissertation was a 2 ½ year ethnography of a cosmopolitan social group. Miriam is also a Faculty Reader for the Master of Arts in Intercultural Research at the Intercultural Communication Institute.  She received her MA from the University of Texas at Austin and her BA from the University of Puget Sound.

Miriam Sobre-Denton

Her publications include the following:

Sobré-Denton, M.S., & Bardhan, N. (2013). Cultivating cosmopolitanism for intercultural communication:  Communicating as a global citizen.  New York:  Routledge.

Bardhan, N., & Sobré-Denton, M.S. (in press, 2013). Interculturality, cosmopolitanism and the role of the imagination: A perspective for communicating as global citizens.  In M. Rozbichi (ed.), Perspectives on interculturality.  New York:  Palgrave-MacMillan

Hess, A., & Sobré-Denton, M.S. (in press, 2013).  Hidden constructions of whiteness in the American Judiciary:  A critical rhetorical analysis of the confirmation hearings of Sonia Sotomayor.  Communication Studies. 

Sobré-Denton, M.S. (2012).  Stories from the cage:  Autoethnographic sensemaking of workplace bullying, gender discrimination and white privilege.  Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 41(2), 220-250.

Sobré-Denton, M.S. (2012).  Landscaping the rootless:  Defining cosmopolitan identity in a postcolonial world.  In M. Orbe & N. Bardhan (eds.), Identity research in intercultural communication.  Lexington Books.

Sobré-Denton, M.S. (2011). The emergence of cosmopolitan group cultures and its implications for cultural transition: A case study of an international student support group.  International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 35(1), 79-91.

McEwan, B. & Sobré-Denton, M.S. (2011).  Virtual third cultures:  Social media, cultural capitol, and the creation of cultural spaces.  Intercultural New Media Forum:  Journal of International and Intercultural Communication, 4, 252-258.

Martin, J.N., Sobré-Denton, M.S., & Kristjánsdóttir, E.S. (2011).  The Impact of a Summer Research Experience on Undergraduate Science Majors.  International Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 1(16), 7-20.

Miriam is currently working on research involving cosmopolitanism, the social imaginary, and social media activism, as well as putting together a certification for global competency for teachers with the group GlobalWise.


Work for CID:
Miriam Sobré-Denton wrote KC2: Cosmopolitanism.