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Archipelagic Imperatives: Shipwreck and Lifesaving in European Societies since 1800

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 AISLES project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the AISLES project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "AISLES" about.

situational    imperatives    lives    counterintuitive    duty    humanitarian    provides    investigates    shift    histories    took    lifesaving    demanded    laboratory    shipwreck    norm    deep    model    tools    source    generalization    generality    germany    volunteer    movements    emerged    innovative    britain    ambit    unconditional    selective    lifeboat    prominently    answers    rupture    1820s    theorizing    intervention    history    distinctness    theory    had    everyday    shipwrecked    question    times    moral    answer    suffering    emergence    form    technological    constituted    contextual    humanitarianism    incentives    plane    rationale    exemption    conflicted    previously    nor    innovation    determined    sidelined    first    ideal    purpose    base    assistance    theoretical    detachment    existential    questions    develops    relation    aggregation    norms    morality    onward    risk    save    single    culture    resistant    risks    why    france    insular    homes    economic    historical    inconsistent    netherlands    methodological    combining    varied    representation    saving    imperative    sustenance    archipelago    overturned    twofold    quotidian   

Project "AISLES" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
city: Berlin
postcode: 10117

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Germany [DE]
 Total cost 1˙912˙016 €
 EC max contribution 1˙912˙016 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2019-COG
 Funding Scheme ERC-COG
 Starting year 2020
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2020-05-01   to  2025-04-30


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 
1    GEISTESWISSENSCHAFTLICHE ZENTREN BERLIN EV DE (Berlin) coordinator 1˙912˙016.00


 Project objective

Why does humanitarianism take the form of an archipelago, an aggregation of “single issues,” selective, resistant to generalization, and even at times inconsistent? In order to answer this question, which is crucial to, but has been sidelined in histories of humanitarianism, the project develops a novel approach. This approach homes in on the rupture of humanitarian morality with quotidian moral norms and values. For this purpose, the project investigates the history of a particular moral norm, the imperative of saving lives from shipwreck, that emerged in the ambit of volunteer lifeboat movements from the 1820s onward. Such movements had emerged first in Britain and the Netherlands, then elsewhere, most prominently France and Germany. The imperative in question took the form of a novel unconditional norm that demanded taking counterintuitive risks in order to save lives. Previously, assistance to the shipwrecked had been situational. Moral detachment from suffering had been recognized as a value. Existential risk had constituted an exemption from lifesaving duty. Lifeboat movements overturned this quotidian moral rationale. This shift was neither determined by economic incentives nor by technological or legal innovation. The saving of lives from shipwreck thus provides an ideal laboratory, with a rich and varied source base, for understanding humanitarian-moral innovation on its own terms. The intervention of the project is twofold. On the plane of historical knowledge, it provides a model for the deep contextual analysis of moral culture in terms of the emergence, sustenance, representation, and insular distinctness of humanitarian imperatives. On the plane of theoretical knowledge, the project develops innovative answers to questions of moral theory, especially about the generality of norms and the conflicted relation of humanitarianism and everyday morality. The project develops novel methodological tools for combining moral theorizing and historical research.

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The information about "AISLES" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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