Research Projects

  • (B-3-1) Economic theology / theological economy

    The central question of the research project concerned the current sovereignty of economy as a theory, a science and a system of praxis. The domination of economy cannot be explained on its own terms, but derives from transformations and relations going back to the Oikonomia of Greco-Roman antiquity as well as Christianity.

  • (B-3-2) Oikonomia Rossica: genealogy and poetology of economical thought in Russia

    The aim of the project was to investigate modern economical discourse in Russia in connection with the complex reception of the Aristotelian theory of oikonomia and the Christian history of salvation handed down from Orthodox ecclesiastical law. That concept puts an emphasis on positive, minor deviations for the sake of an overall purpose, an axiology accompanied by terminologically vague discourse.

  • (B-3-3) The Soul as Economic Space

    As part of the investigation of the transformations that ancient economics and chrematistics underwent in the early modern era, this project focused on ancient psychotopology, exploring the cultural resonance and literary productivity of stoic oikeiosis as well as aristotelian-galenic models of faculty theory.

  • (B-3-4) Parasitic Economies

    The subject of the project is the literary history of parasites, a history that from antiquity onward has been set down in a variety of genres: comedy, Menippean satire, novella, essay and autobiography. The explicit or implicit contrariness of drastic rituals of exclusion and the subliminal negativity of order have combined to bestow elementary aesthetic attractiveness upon parasitic relations, a phenomenon that has been observed since antiquity.

  • (B-3-5) Aristoteles' Oikonomika

    This research project examined Aristotle’s theory of the Greek “household” as a spatial and functional (buildings, real estate and other property), social (nuclear family) and power-based (male-female, father-child, master-slave relations) phenomenon. The objective was to situate this theory in the framework of Aristotle’s analysis of the polis societies of his day, and to interpret the theory as a reaction to real historical economic changes occurring in Greece in the late 5th and 4th c. BC.

  • (B-3-6) Poetological Household Management

    This project investigated the nexus of conceptions of household management and theories of imagination in the modeling of literary authorship in late-medieval and early modern British literature.

  • (B-3-7) Economic and social reproduction. The transformations of “Chrematistics”

    In this project, Joseph Vogl demonstrated through the theme of chrematistics and its profile of characteristics how economic processes and social structures permeate and pervade each other.

  • (B-3-8) Oikonomia and Agora

    This research project investigated the question when and how the agora developed into a marketplace and what influence it had on the oikonomia as such. The working hypothesis was that the market and the increasing use of coins (also politically conditioned) largely determined the literary discourse on oikonomia.

  • (B-3-9) Aristotelian economics. Epistemic and normative aspects of Aristotle’s theory of the household and the πόλις

    The purpose of this project was, on the one hand, to explicate the epistemic and normative aspects of the household in interpreting Aristotle’s Politics, Ethics and Poetics, and, on the other hand, trace a modern transformation of Aristotle’s notions of household-based community in 19th Century German philosophy.


  • (B-3-4-1) Parasitic Economies

    In antiquity the oikos was already under assault: Where the fragile relation between gift and return gift, credit and repayment, has been thrown off balance – this is where the search begins for the parasite, who enriches himself at the household’s expense. With a performance part mimesis, part transformation, the parasite solves crises, yet he also stimulates exclusion strategies. Based on concepts developed by Michel Serres and on economic theory from antiquity onward, this PhD project examines typical stages in the development of a parasite economy; the focus is on the French enlightenment, naturalism, realism and the modern age.

    This Ph.D. thesis is being written within the program “Ancient Languages and Texts” (ALT) of the Berlin Graduate School of Ancient Studies (BerGSAS).

  • (B-3-5-1) Oikonomia and Domestic Economy in Classical Greece

    There is a certain irony involved in the discussion of ancient Greek household economy. Although the very concept of ‘Hauswirtschaft’ sparked the debate on the nature of the Ancient economy at the end of the 19th century, this debate never ventured far in developing a theory of household economy. This may be no accident. Despite all the polarization, so called ‘modernists’ and ‘primitivists’ shared a common notion of household economy (or ‘domestic economy’). It was supposed to be an archaic form of economic organization, aiming at autarky and self-sufficiency. This project followed a different lead. In classical times (ca. 450 – 300 B. C. E.) the Greek household economy adapted to the monetized markets of its urban environment. Not only that: the household was never surpassed as the most efficient form of economic organization.