This issue of PARSE Journal, developed in collaboration with Nav Haq (Curator) and Stina Edblom (Artistic Director) of the Göteborg International Biennial for Contemporary Art 2017 (GIBCA 2017), comes at a critical time for European social and political attitudes within a global context, in which many attitudes and principles are fundamentally being challenged. In particular, the very European truce between secular humanism and religious traditions has come under increasing scrutiny, challenged both from within and without. While there may certainly be good reasons to challenge any particular societal configuration, the question inevitably arises how human beings of different beliefs, or no particular belief and of different modes of life should be able to live together in peace and with a sense of equality, rights and freedom. This is the question of secularity. The subject for this issue of PARSE is taken directly from Nav Haq’s curatorial thematic for GIBCA 2017 that he has been developing throughout 2016 and 2017, titled WheredoIendandyoubegin—On Secularity, and is launched to coincide with the opening of the biennial to act as part-catalogue, part-contextual (re)source and part-imaginative interpolation in tandem with events that will be held throughout the biennial.
Editors: Dr. Andrea Phillips, Nav Haq, and Dr. Ola Sigurdson