News & Events

Past Events Archive

  • Rock and Rule: Popular Music in Cold War Poland and East Germany

    We often hear that rock and roll helped bring down communist regimes, but they themselves believed that it could help their cause. For much of the Cold War, communist states taught rock in schools, organized popular music festivals, and held singing competitions on TV. However, things did not always go as planned. This talk considers what rock looked like on the other side of the Iron Curtain, with a focus on Poland and East Germany in the 1960s.

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  • Paving the Way: Refugees in German Higher Education

    Many refugees coming to Germany are highly educated. In late 2015, at the beginning of the so-called “European refugee crisis”, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research launched a 100 Million Euro four-year initiative to pave the way for refugees into the German higher education system. 200 universities are taking part in the programs rolled out by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), assessing the refugees’ university entrance qualification, offering preparatory language and propaedeutic courses as well as providing guidance and support by hundreds of volunteering student initiatives. Bernd Fischer, will give an evidence-based presentation on the programs and…

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  • Metropolis in Ruins. Berlin's Interval of Time, 1943-1947: Global Urban Humanities Fall 2018 Colloquium

    “Metropolis in Ruins. Berlin’s Interval of Time, 1943-1947” Stefan-Ludwig Hoffmann Associate Professor of History Tuesday, October 30, 12-1:30pm Wurster 170 Part of the Global Urban Humanities Colloquium The City and Its People, Rhetoric 198-3 / ARCH 198-2, Rhetoric 244A / ARCH 298-2 With the modern metropolis emerges also the anticipation of urban ruination. However, what if the unimaginable (yet incessantly imagined) occurs and a metropolis falls apart? What happens after the deportations of Jews, delusions of imperial domination, and ravages of urban warfare create, in a shockingly short time, a deserted ruin landscape where there was once a world city?…

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  • Sasha Waltz and Guests: Körper

    In her signature work, Körper (Bodies), Berlin choreographer Sasha Waltz explores the visceral tangle of humanity from the perspectives of history, science, and architecture. Waltz premiered Körper in her first season as artistic director of the Schaubühne Theater in 2000 and now revives the work as she is poised to take on the co-directorship of the Staatsballett Berlin next year. Set on 13 male and female dancers, the movement evokes a staggering range of embodied experience through a series of living tableaux, both epic and intimate; the dancers morph and converge, meld and squirm, join and are torn apart, creating…

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  • Townsend Center's Berkeley Book Chat: Bryan Wagner: The Tar Baby: A Global History

    In The Tar Baby: A Global History (Princeton, 2017), Bryan Wagner (English) explores how the tar baby tale, thought to have originated in Africa, came to exist in hundreds of forms on five continents. Examining the fable’s variation, reception, and dispersal over time, he argues that this story of a fox, a rabbit, and a doll made of tar and turpentine is best understood not merely as a folktale but as a collective work in political philosophy. Circulating at the same time and in the same places as new ideas about property and politics developed in colonial law and political…

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  • Dutch Studies book presentation: Jaap Robben

    Dutch author, poet and playwright Jaap Robben will present his latest novel in English translation, You Have Me To Love

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  • What is in a Category? Telling Political Refugees and Economic Migrants Apart

    Please join us for our Annual Bucerius Lecture with David Miliband, President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee, followed by a conversation with Jutta Allmendinger, President of the WZB Berlin Social Science Center. Unlike Europe, where there are two separate migration issues that are coming together in a complicated way, the US conversation on migration has until recently been more neatly divided between economic immigrants coming from Latin America and East/South Asia on the one hand and refugees being resettled in the country largely from the Middle East and Africa. But the unaccompanied minors crisis a few years ago,…

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  • Environmental Change and Migration in Historical Perspective

    Environmental Change and Migration in Historical Perspective Sponsors: Institute of European Studies, GHI West – Pacific Regional Office of the German Historical Institute Washington DC, Gerda Henkel Foundation, Center for German and European Studies   Current debates about “climate refugees” have triggered interest in the larger connections between environmental change and migration. But what can history contribute to this new field of research? Focusing on historical case studies of environmental migration in general and displacement after natural disasters in particular, Uwe Lübken’s talk will highlight the potential of historical research for this debate. This lecture is part of the Gerda Henkel Lecture Series, organized…

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  • Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People Schaubühne Berlin

    Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People by Henrik Ibsen Directed by Thomas Ostermeier In a version by Florian Borchmeyer October 12–13, 2018 Zellerbach Hall Price: Tickets start at $30 Berlin’s esteemed Schaubühne theater presents a radically revised adaptation of An Enemy of the People, Ibsen’s potent 1882 drama about individual and social responsibility. The story of a whistleblower in a small town whose efforts to speak truth to power are shut down by his self-interested neighbors, the play both implicates and exhilarates its audience in a conversation about the perils of democratic capitalism. Directed by Thomas Ostermeier, for decades a leading creative…

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  • Authoritarianism and Democracy: Austria, Germany and Europe, 1918-2018

    Sociologist Ralf Dahrendorf wrote in 1997 that “a century of authoritarianism is by no means the least likely prognosis for the 21st century”. Due to economic globalization and digitalization, changes in the realms of life and work are vast and far-reaching, with profound consequences for democracy. This development, however, is not new—a look at globalization from the end of World War I to post-1945 Europe reveals comparable crises. Bridging literary, historical, economic and technological perspectives, this two-day conference examines the successes, and failures, of democracies, and analyzes a possible return of anti-democratic trends, both in present-day Europe and internationally. 10am-12pm…

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