Jan Sowa is a social theorist serving as Professor at the Academy of Fine Arts, Warsaw. He holds a doctorate in sociology and an associate professorship in cultural studies. He has been a guest researcher at several academic and non-academic institutions worldwide, including University of São Paulo, Warsaw University and Akademie der Künste der Welt in Cologne. Between 2015 and 2019 he was a member of the Committee on Cultural Studies of the Polish Academy of Sciences. He has also been active outside of the academic field in media and art recently working as the Curator of Discursive Programs and Research of Biennale Warszawa (2018-2019). In 2020, he is a Visiting Fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM), Vienna. Sowa’s research covers a wide area of topics and interests. One of his continuous interests is the diverging articulation of modernity/modernization in the periphery/semi-periphery of the capitalist world system. This topic was systematically elaborated already in his habilitation The King’s Phantom Body. Peripheral Struggle with the Modern Form, published in Polish in 2011. Sowa considers himself a materialist and dialectical thinker. His latest research is dedicated to populism as a disclosure, or rather a traumatic encounter, with the Real that attests to the end of postmodern conceptions of politics.