The Passport as Home: Comfort in Rootlessness

Two model figures standing on an open passport with multiple stamps

The Passport as Home: Comfort in Rootlessness

Monday, 6 June 2022 - 5:00pm to 6:30pm
ESC Seminar Room and Zoom
Andrei Markovits (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor)
Hartmut Mayer (Director, European Studies Centre)
Timothy Garton Ash (St Antony's College, Oxford); Kalypso Nicolaidis (European University Institute, Florence)

This is a hybrid event: to attend in person, please register on Eventbrite. To attend online, please register on Zoom.

On the occasion of the publication of The Passport as Home: Comfort in Rootlessness

This is the story of an illustrious Romanian-born, Hungarian-speaking, Vienna-schooled, Columbia-educated and Harvard-formed middle-class Jewish professor of politics and other subjects. Markovits revels in a rootlessness that offers him comfort, succour, and the inspiration for his life’s work. As we follow his quest to find a home, we encounter his engagement with the important political, social and cultural developments of five decades on two continents. We also learn about his musical preferences, from classical to rock; his love of team sports such as soccer, baseball, basketball, and American football; and his devotion to dogs and their rescue. Above all, the book analyses the travails of emigration the author experienced twice, moving from Romania to Vienna and then from Vienna to New York.

Andrei Markovits is currently an Arthur F. Thurnau Professor and the Karl W. Deutsch Collegiate Professor of Comparative Politics and German Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. After receiving his doctorate in political science in 1976, he went to the Center for European Studies at Harvard University, and has since held academic appointments at a number of universities around the world. Among them have been Dortmund University, Osnabrück University and Bochum University in Germany; Innsbruck University in Austria where he was a Fulbright Professor in the Department of Political Science; St. Gallen University in Switzerland; and The Hebrew University and Tel Aviv University in Israel. His scholarly interests include topics as varied as German and Austrian politics, anti-Semitism, anti-Americanism, social democracy, social movements, the European right and the European left.

Timothy Garton Ash is Professor of European Studies in the University of Oxford, Isaiah Berlin Professorial Fellow at St Antony's College, Oxford, and a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. At St Antony's, he also directs the Dahrendorf Programme for the Study of Freedom. He is the author of ten books of political writing or ‘history of the present’ including The Magic Lantern: The Revolution of ’89 Witnessed in Warsaw, Budapest, Berlin, & Prague, The File: A Personal History, In Europe’s Name, Facts are Subversive and Free Speech: Ten Principles for a Connected World. He writes a column on international affairs in the Guardian, which is widely syndicated, and is a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books, amongst other journals.

Kalypso Nicolaidis is Professor at the School of Transnational Governance, European University Institute, and Professor of International Relations at the University of Oxford. She is chair of Southeastern European Studies at Oxford and Council member of the European Council of Foreign Relations. Her most recent books are A Citizen’s Guide to the Rule of Law – Why We Need to Fight for the Most Precious Human Inventions of All Time (with Adis Merdzanovic, 2021) and Exodus, Reckoning, Sacrifice: Three Meanings of Brexit (2019).