Located at the Faculty of Humanities of the University of Amsterdam, the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA) is a research institute and doctoral school dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of culture from a broad humanities perspective.
ASCA does not subscribe to any single theoretical or methodological practice, but, rather, is defined precisely by its interdisciplinary approach, in which researchers work at the intersections of core disciplines in the humanities to develop new theoretical frameworks and research methodologies for analysing culture in all its forms and expressions. ASCA is the only humanities research institute in the Netherlands to place interdisciplinarity and theoretical research on culture at the core of its mission, vision, and programme.
Uniting the research conducted within ASCA is a commitment to the five principles of cultural analysis:
ASCA is home to more than 100 scholars and over 100 PhD candidates active in literature, philosophy, film and media studies, art and visual culture, musicology, religious studies, theatre and performance studies, and argumentation theory. Specialists in their own respective fields, ASCA members share a commitment to working within an interdisciplinary framework and to maintaining a close connection with contemporary social and political debates. Within ASCA, they collaborate to provide an innovative, stimulating, and productive research environment for scholars, professionals, and graduate students from the Netherlands and abroad.
ASCA has particular strengths in four key areas of research: globalisation and cultural transformation; creative industries; cultural heritage and identity; and digital humanities. These strengths, which combine expertise and insights from members across all constituent departments, make ASCA ideally suited to address the ‘big questions’ facing contemporary society, including issues of multiculturalism; inequality; migration and urbanisation; new media and communication technologies; and knowledge production, sharing, and archiving.