By Anna Witte from Germany/the Netherlands

August 10, 2015

It is the last Monday of the summer school. After today there will be only two more days to go. This day is designated for working in groups and preparing the presentations for the following two days. 

We are working in our teams, preparing our power point slides, choosing video’s we want to show and practicing the interactive parts of the presentations. Because everybody spends the biggest part of the day in their own groups, I choose to approach the content of my blog differently. Throughout the day and in the evening I will ask all the participants of the summer school for a quote that links to either the summer school itself or one of its main topics: social change, development and pluralism. The quote can be one by themselves, by others from the program, from the teachers or from someone else. Here are the results:


“Democracy is the worst regime, except for all the others.” (Churchill)

All you need is love.” (in a lecture of JC van der Merwe)

“There is no peace without justice.” (Gusdur)

“Hypocrisy has its own elegant symmetry.” (Julie Metz)
said in the context of what Governments think of popular movements.

“We have never faced a tragedy like this, but we have also never had an opportunity to solve it like we have now.” (from the film “What is possible”)

“What’s possible!” (from the film “What is possible”)

“In terms of pluralism, I should merely be myself and do my best.” (Halili)


“Keep dancing outside of your comfort zone.” (Wieke)


“No concept should be closed, always leave it open for new interpretations” (Sitharamam ‘Ram’ Kakarala)

“This feels like freedom.”(Shreeradha)

“…. If the Dutch allow us.” (by Halili just before singing the National Anthem of Indonesia)

“Thank you for the wonderful Indonesian karaoke adventure.” (Halili)

“We are already feeling the ripple effect of pluralism because I have made so many brothers and sisters during summer school.” (Busi)

“When in Rome do as the Romans do.” – No matter how luxurious our lives are, we always adapt to the changing needs of the hour and place. (Anjali)

“Do not think about the issue of sustainability as a big thing, make it personal.”(Henk Manschot)

“When it comes to social change, it is not about taking sides pro or against, but reflexivity is the only method; can you keep things without closed assumptions?(Sitharamam ‘Ram’ Kakarala)

“Our societies are waiting for the emergence of a new ‘we’; a ‘we’ that would bring together men and women, citizen of all religions and those without religion who would undertake together to resolve the contradictions of their society.” (Tariq Ramadan)

“It’s not enough to have theory, we need practice. Failure to do that leads to disconnection of various sorts.” (Catherine)

Henk: “What is possible?”
Ram: “Do we really know enough to act?”

“I’m feel free now because we are not neglected any more. They (the people) will remember me, my son, my children. They (the sons) will smile.” (by one of the mothers of the 1998 May victims)

“I want to start this lecture with a confessional statement about the probability of misunderstanding and the possibility of not being able to clarify the misunderstanding even after discussing it.” (Sitharamam ‘Ram’ Kakarala).

“A beginning is to rethink the way we imagine the “other”: not as an enemy, but as an adversary (Mouffe)” (Sitharamam ‘Ram’ Kakarala)

View from the Study Room


Anna Witte is an MA student at the University of Humanistic Studies in Utrecht. She works  as freelancer for her own company (annawittefilm) which produces documentary films. One of her films is titled ‘Polish for Beginners’ ( She is currently working on a documentary on refugees in the Mediterranean.