The Center for the Study of Modernity and the Rural World was established in 2016, as an independent and interdisciplinary research center, probably the first one in Romania that has the headquarters and activates mostly in the rural area, namely in the Telciu village, in the Bistrița-Năsăud county. The approach proposed by the Center is a decolonial critical one, which considers necessary the horizontal dialogue and exchange between the rural environment and the urban one, the academic and the artistic one, in order to reduce the differences and inequalities produced by un unequal and non-inclusive development, and of their effects on the rural communities but not only. Together with a feminist and ecologist perspective, the decolonial critique which constitutes the theoretical base of the Center determines us to transpose in our projects and practices – implicitly the organizational ones – principles such as gender equality, intersectional inclusion, sustainability, social ecology, attention for the contextual power relations. Moreover, we constantly have a critical relationship with our material context (including economic inequalities) as well as with the local and global ideological one which encompass us.
Our projects range from scientific-academic (Telciu Summer Conferences, Telciu Summer School, editorial projects), cultural-educational (Telciu 2020, Telciu Bulletin, etc.), artistic research and production (Handpicked in Telciu, Factories and Plants, Base cells, etc.), which aim to include the communitarian perspective. Through the theoretical approach chosen, the implementation of our projects, and in general the practices of the Center, we aim to explore possible alternatives to the dominating discourses and practices of neocolonialism, patriarchy, capitalism and neoliberal, which leave their indeleble mark not only on the Romanian context, but also on the global one, and which are still being normalized despite their negative effects and the inequalities they produce.