Programme for the 2021 Holberg Week, 7–10 June


Join us in a virtual celebration of the 2020 and 2021 Holberg Laureates and Nils Klim Laureates. The Holberg Week will take place from 7 to 10 June.

The 2021 Holberg Week will celebrate both the 2020 and the 2021 Holberg Laureates, Griselda Pollock and Martha C. Nussbaum, as well as the Nils Klim Laureates, Frederik Poulsen and Daria Gritsenko

All events will be virtual, and they will be streamed on the Holberg Prize YouTube channel and on our website. 

The Holberg Week Programme

The Holberg Symposium in honour of Griselda Pollock:
"Is Feminism a Bad Memory?"

Date: Monday, 7 June
Time: 10:00 A.M. – 01:00 P.M. (UTC+2) 
Venue: Virtual event / The University Aula, Bergen
Livestream on YouTube

What is the cultural memory of the later 20th century feminist intellectual and theoretical revolution? To what should we remain faithful? The topic chosen by the 2020 Holberg Laureate.  The presentations will be followed by a panel discussion. You can submit questions for the panellists in advance by filling out this form.


  • Griselda Pollock, Professor of Social and Critical Histories of Art and Director of CentreCATH, University of Leeds:
    Introduction of the symposium topic
  • Elvan Zabunyan, Professor of Art History, University of Rennes 2:
    "Unity, Community, Feminist Solidarity"
  • Lubaina Himid, Professor of Contemporary Art, University of Central Lancashire:
    Black British Women Artists: Working on the Front and the Central, or Thin Black Lines - A Conversation with Griselda Pollock
  • Elisabeth Bronfen, Professor of English and American Studies, University of Zürich:
    "Feminism. A Transgenerational Issue."
  • Elspeth Mitchell, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Leeds:
    "Becoming Feminist?"

The Holberg Lecture by Griselda Pollock:
"Art, Thought and Difficulty"

Date: Monday, 7 June
Time: 02:00 P.M. – 03:00 P.M. (UTC+2) / 08:00 A.M. – 09:00 A.M (EDT)
Venue: Virtual event / The University Aula, Bergen
Livestream on YouTube

Are prefixes feminist, postcolonial, international, queer, social for histories of art labelling or obligations responding to lived emergencies? Lecture by the 2020 Holberg Laureate, Professor Griselda Pollock.

The Nils Klim Seminar in honour of Daria Gritsenko:
"Aligning Digitalisation and Sustainability"

Date: Tuesday, 8 June
Time: 10:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M. (UTC+2)
Venue: Virtual event / The University Aula, Bergen
Livestream on YouTube

What kind of governance can align digital technological disruption with sustainability transition challenges?  The topic is chosen by the 2021 Nils Klim Laureate, Daria Gritsenko. The presentations will be followed by a panel discussion. You can ask questions for the panelists in advance by filling out this form.


  • Daria Gritsenko, Assistant Professor of Russian and Eurasian Studies, University of Helsinki:
    Introduction of the topic
  • Viktor Galaz, Associate Professor and Deputy Director, Stockholm Resilience Center, Stockholm University:
    "Sustainability in an Era of Dark Machines"
  • Marianne Ryghaug, Professor of Science and Technology Studies and Head of the Center for Energy, Climate and Environment, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).

The event will be moderated by Håvard Haarstad, Professor of Human Geography and Director of the Centre for Climate and Energy Transformation, University of Bergen.

The Holberg Lecture by Martha C. Nussbaum:
"Justice for Animals: Practical Progress through Philosophical Theory"

Date: Tuesday, 8 June
Time: 02:00 P.M. – 03:00 P.M. (UTC+2) / 08:00 A.M. – 09:00 A.M (EDT)
Venue: Virtual event (University of Chicago / The University Aula, Bergen)
Livestream on YouTube

Lecture by 2021 Holberg Laureate Martha C. Nussbaum, Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics, University of Chicago.


The Holberg Symposium in honour of Martha C. Nussbaum:
"Fear and Anger in Public Life: A Challenge for the Humanities"

Date: Tuesday, 8 June
Time: 04:00 P.M. – 07:00 P.M. (UTC+2) / 10:00 A.M. – 01:00 P.M. (EDT)
Venue: Virtual event / The University Aula, Bergen
Livestream on Youtube

We have recently witnessed, in many nations, outbreaks of ungrounded fear and destructive anger. How does our work as philosophers help societies to confront these problems? The topic is chosen by the 2021 Holberg Laureate Martha C. Nussbaum. The presentations will be followed by a panel discussion.


  • Martha C. Nussbaum, Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics, University of Chicago:
    Introduction of the symposium topic
  • Philip Kitcher, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, Columbia University:
    "Distrust and Democracy"
  • Susan Wolf, Edna J. Koury Distinguished Professor, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill:
    "A Place for Anger"
  • Allison Aitken, Bersoff Faculty Fellow, Department of Philosophy, New York University:
    "Etiological Analysis as a Palliative for Anger"


Award Ceremony for the Holberg Prize School Project

Date: Tuesday, 8 June
Time: 07:30 P.M. (UTC+2) 
Venue: The Main Hall, KODE 1, Bergen

Award Ceremony and reception for the winners of the Holberg Prize School Project and the Teacher's Prize. This event is by invitation only, and will not be streamed.

Award Ceremony for the 2020 and the 2021 Holberg Prize and Nils Klim Prize

Date: Wednesday, 9 June
Time: 6:00 P.M. – 08:00 P.M. (UTC+2) / 12:00 P.M. – 02:00 P.M. (EDT)
Venue: Virtual event / The University Aula, Bergen
Livestream on YouTube

Award Ceremony for 2020 Holberg Laureate Griselda Pollock; 2021 Holberg Laureate Martha C. Nussbaum; 2020 Nils Klim Laureate Frederik Poulsen; and 2021 Nils Klim Laurate Daria Gritsenko. 

The ceremony will be streamed on this website and on the Holberg Prize YouTube channel. Due to entry restrictions, the Laurates will not be appearing in person. The awards will be conferred in the Laureates' respective countries, and a virtual ceremony will be hosted from the University Aula in Bergen.

Event featuring Griselda Pollock:
The National Museum ("Mot et nytt museum")

Date: Thursday, 10 June  
Time: 05.30 P.M—06.30 P.M.  (UTC+2)
Venue: Virtual event / The National Museum, Oslo
Event page with more information

Holberg Laureate Griselda Pollock will meet Stina Högqvist, Director of Exhibitions and Collections at the National Museum in Oslo, to talk about the importance of art museums in the public sphere today.