The First Foundations of Reciprocal Knowledge


Bringing together around a hundred researchers from Europe and China and the Far East, India and Southeast Asia, West Africa and the Maghreb, the Conference had three objectives:

– A political objective: to show that Europe knows how to dialogue with the world; knows how to open up to the diversity of perspectives and models of knowledge emanating from non-European cultural areas; knows how to recognize the process by which European identity is formed in its exchanges with areas of non-European culture; knows how to offer, in this transcultural consultation, an alternative to the “culture shock”.

– An ethical and cultural objective: to confront the different methods of representing universals, to build new models – models of society, models of knowledge and communication – capable of bringing together in innovative cooperation, Europe and its partners from non-European cultures. The principle of reciprocity then acts as the unifying and organizing motive of a true universality;

– A scientific and educational objective: to propose a transcultural methodology of reciprocal knowledge applying to new models of distance communication and in particular to distance education and research networks.

The Brussels Congress placed under the High Patronage of Mr. Romano Prodi, and under the scientific presidency of Umberto Eco, was preceded on October 27 in Paris, at the Grand Amphithéâtre de la Sorbonne, by a Seminar on “Models of mutual knowledge”, chaired by Umberto Eco, in partnership with the Editions des Dictionnaires Le Robert. Meeting broadcast by the University Television Canal U.