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The Dance Floor is a Political Space!

Berlin University Alliance, Cluster of Excellence – Contestations of the Liberal Script (SCRIPTS), ClubCommission Berlin | Sarah Farina, Katharin Ahrend, Sébastien Tremblay, Steph C

A Knowledge Exchange on the Role of Clubs for Liberal and Open Societies.

In recent years, Berlin and other comparable cities have sounded the alarm over the disappearance of alternative spaces and clubs as a symptom of a fundamental change in urban society. Gentrification, housing shortages, rising rents and changing demographics make it more and more difficult to find and maintain places that can serve as retreats for artists and marginalized communities alike. Often, however, such places are experimental spaces for social utopias, alternative forms of coexistence and interaction. In addition, they are places for innovation: culturally, technologically and socially. What does it mean for liberal societies when such places disappear, become less accessible or marginalized? How do they have to be designed? Can a society afford to lose such spaces? What can it do to retain them? In addition to artists, activists and audiences, what role can scientists, politicians or industry play?

Researchers of the Cluster of Excellence “Contestations of the Liberal Script – SCRIPTS“ and the Berlin Clubcommission as well as actors from the arts and culture scene discuss these and other questions to foster an intersectoral knowledge exchange between theory and practice, between science and society. Attendees can give their own impulses and use interactive tools to participate in the discussion.

This event is presented by the Berlin University Alliance in cooperation with the Cluster of Excellence “Contestations of the Liberal Script – SCRIPTS“ and the Berlin Clubcommission. The Berlin University Alliance is a consortium of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Technische Universität Berlin und Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. Together they aim to make Berlin an integrated research environment across all boundaries. The Cluster of Excellence SCRIPTS is an international research platform based in Berlin that investigates contestations of the liberal script, as well as alternative models of social and political order, in historical, global, and comparative perspective.



This event can be attended in-person with a limited on-site audience at the Museum of Natural History. Please register by sending an e-mail to First come, first serve.

On-site the protective and hygienic measures of the Museum of Natural History apply. The so-called 3G rule (for „geimpft, genesen oder getestet“, i.e. „vaccinated, recovered or tested“) will be applied: Anyone who is not fully vaccinated or is not considered recovered will be required to provide a recent negative Covid-19 test. Visiting the event is permitted with a medical face mask only.

We will take pictures and videos on the Campus on 5/6 November, which we will use for documentation and communication purposes. If you do not agree, please send your denial to via email to prior to the Campus. We also refer to our data protection regulation.

Zur Übersicht

Sarah Farina is an international DJ, music producer and activist. She hosts her own club night Rec Room with DJ Uta, Kepler and LUZ1E. She’s innovative, she’s skilful, and she’s the smiling antithesis of genre cliques and sour scene elitists and sprinkles positivity over the darkest bass. What you hear is all you need to know. And what you’ll hear from Sarah Farina’s sets and music productions are seamlessly blended bass-heavy frequencies and futuristic beats with fearless forays through the hardcore continuum and beyond. It’s inclusive, forward-thinking and unrestrained. It’s a genre-rejecting style that she’s named Rainbow Bass. She’s vocal about the issues of current club culture and runs the project „Transmission“ with researcher Dr. Kerstin Meißner, which aims to make the political relevance and history of international sound, club and rave culture audible and visible.

Katharin Ahrend


Katharin Ahrend is a cultural manager, curator and cultural-political consultant in the field of social justice, urban planning and club culture. At the Clubcommission Berlin, she heads the Awareness & Diversity department, which is structurally concerned with creating the safest and most diverse spaces possible within club culture. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Katharin Ahrend has been an active founding member of the global campaign United We Stream as well as the creative director of the Day Of Club Culture in Berlin. After studying Business Psychology, she completed her Master’s in Cultural Management and has since worked for various cultural projects in Germany and the Middle East as well as for many festivals. Among other things, Katharin was the artistic director of the Artlake Festival and was substantially involved in building up the Feel Festival in Berlin/Brandenburg. Until 2019 she has been responsible for the cultural development and cultural-political representation of the former mint Alte Münze in Berlin. Katharin Ahrend’s cultural work is characterized by her own reflection on structural and social inequalities and the search for cultural strategies to counteract discrimination and exclusion. The goal is always to create spaces and platforms that promote exchange and the dismantling of boundaries and prejudices.

Sébastien is a trained historian and postdoctoral fellow at the International Research College (IRC) of the Cluster of Excellence “SCRIPTS” – Contestations of the Liberal Script. He is also associated with the Centre for Queer History at Goldsmiths, University of London. He obtained his PhD at the DFG Graduate School for Global Intellectual History at the Friedrich-Meinecke-Institute in 2020. His dissertation focused on the pink triangle as a symbol of transatlantic identities and the discursive importance of National Socialism for LGBTQ+ social movements in the transatlantic world. His past and present research deals with queer temporalities, the relationship between collective memory, violence and utopias, as well as the significance of the visual for a transnational history of ideas. He is currently working on his first monograph: A Badge of Injury: The Pink Triangle as a Global Symbol of Gay and Lesbian Identities. At SCRIPTS, he is affiliated with the Research Unit ‘Borders’ where he studies the consequences of queer temporalities and progressive narratives for border-making in Western Europe, examining the portrayal of the ‘other’ in the German queer imaginary.

After many years as a senior manager for international companies, Steph decided to vacate her seat at the corporate boardroom table to volunteer for friends who had been busy birthing a new music genre “dubstep”.

Transferring and sharing her business acumen to label, artist & event management, steph’s journey soon expanded to include mentoring, bookings, business advice, digital marketing, panels, guest chats ++ (For independents as well as brands such as DEEP MEDi MUSIK, Native Instruments, Berlin Community Radio, Prague Meet Factory, THF RADIO etc)

Working with music didn’t stop Steph’s passion for consuming and enjoying…
2 years as Norwood Soul Patrol host (london’s Rinse Fm) and an ever growing vinyl collection brought surprise dj gigs;  including Glasgow’s Art School, London’s Fire, Corsica Studios, Berlin’s Ohm and (unbelievably) Berghain’s main room.

Steph’s 360 degree experience as a fan, a creative & an industry professional nourishes her unwavering desire to support and empower others on their journey.

musik matter: a compassionate organisation created to share knowledge & support growth.

The forever goal : transparency and fairness…  FOR ALL !

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Über den Veranstaltungsort
Berlin Science Week Campus – Museum für Naturkunde Berlin
Invalidenstraße 43
Berlin, Berlin 10115 Germany
(030) 8891408591

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