Eastern German News


 Newsletter of the Eastern German Studies Association

 #28 (October 2000)


1998 EGSA Conference Book

Proofs have been read for the collected papers of the 1998 conference, and the book should appear next spring.

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Conference Announcements and Reports

Otzenhausen Conference

The annual Otzenhausen conference this year runs from 2-5 November. Held at the confortable facilities of the Europäische Akademie Otzenhausen, the theme this year is Deutsche Fragen -- von der Teilung zur Einheit. There will be three plenary sections:

  1. Das politische Management der deuschen Einheit
  2. Aufarbeitung der DDR-Geschichte durch gesellschaftliche Initiativen, Gedenkstätten und Museen
  3. Bilanz der Einigungsprozesses

There will be four sectionals on these themes:

Brief paper proposals are due by 15 August 2000. Participants without papers are also welcome, but those who participate are expected to be there for the entire conference.

Paper proposals and requests to attend should be directed to:

Prof. Dr. Dr. Heiner Timmermann
Sozialwisschenschaftliches Forschungsinstitut der Europäisichen Akademie Otzenhausen
D- 66620 Nonnweiler
Phone: 06873 662 266
Fax: 06873 662 250

I attended this conference several years ago, and recommend it.

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Miscellaneous News

East German Unification Case Study

EGSA member Meredith Heiser and colleagues have developed a web-based German Unification Case Study. This is designed for classroom use.

DEFA Mailing List

DEFA-L is a new e-mail discussion list sponsored by the DEFA Film Library at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. It is intended to facilitate communication among those interested in the cinema of the German Democratic Republic, and films dealing with eastern Germany since reunification. To subscribe to the discussion and to be a part of an ongoing exchange of information about DEFA and related topics, just send an e-mail to the DEFA-L administrator, (this is not yet an automated system): DEFA-L-request@german.umass.edu

For general information about the DEFA Film Library and what it has to offer, please see our website: http://www.umass.edu/defa

Hanns Eisler Web Site

EislerMusic.com -- the first English-language website devoted to composer Hanns Eisler is now on-line. Eisler, a pupil of Schoenberg who broke with his teacher in the late 1920s, was perhaps best known for the incidental music he wrote for some of Bertolt Brecht's most controversial plays. Brecht, whose close friendship with Eisler spanned nearly four decades, described Eisler's music as "the ultimate test" for his writing.EislerMusic.com will include reviews, links to scholarly resources, a complete discography and an interactive forum for discussion.

Andy Lang
Hanns Eisler Forum
Cleveland, Ohio

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New Reading

New Books

Peter Barker, Slavs in Germany: The Sorbian Minority and the German State since 1945, The Edwin Mellen Press, 2000. ISBN: 0-7734-7704-7. Price: $89.95.

Peter Barker (ed.), THE GDR AND ITS HISTORY: RÜCKBLICK UND REVISION: DIE DDR IM SPIEGEL DER ENQUETE-KOMMISSIONEN. This  is the first volume in English on the Enquete-Commissions. It contains thirteen contributions, seven in English and six in German.

Jarausch, Konrad H (ed.), Dictatorship as Experience: Towards a Socio-Cultural History of the GDR (New York: Berghahn, 1999). An interesting collection of essays, mostly by people from the Zentrum für Zeithistorische Studien at Potsdam.

McAdams, A. James, Judging the Past in Unifed Germany (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2000).

Meurer , Hans Joachim, CINEMA AND NATIONAL IDENTITY IN A DIVIDED GERMANY 1979-1989: The Split Screen (Toronto: Edward Mellen, 2000). This study provides a comparative analysis of the political, economic and ideological determinants shaping East and West German Feature films during the so-called established phase of the two states between 1979 and 1989. I the first part the author provides a theoretical framework for comparing the two film cultures on an abstract ideological level. The second part analyses the extent to which the political systems of the FRG and GDR shaped production, distribution and exhibition in order to establish a particular type of film culture. Finally, it investigates in greater detail how political, economic and cultural debates surrounding the question of an East and West German identity were translated into filmic discourse.

Monika Gibas, Rainer Gries, Barbara Jakoby & Doris Müller, Wiedergeburten. Zur Geschichte der runden Jahrestage der DDR (Leipzig: Leipziger Universitätsverlag, 1999). This is a large and fascinating book. In 300 pages with a profusion of illustrations (many in color), it covers the anniversary celebrations of the GDR, focusing on those divisible by 5. There are chapters on Socialist holidays, political rhetoric, architecture, film, the Stasi and others. It is a product of of a DFG-supported project titled "Propagandageschichte Freiburg & Leipzig." ISBN: 3-933240-81-6. The book is not listed in the usual Internet sites (e.g., amazon.de). It can be ordered through VLB (which American booksellers familiar with Germany should be able to use), or directly from the publisher for DM. 54, postage included:

Leipziger Universitätsverlag GmbH
Oststraße 41
D-04317 Leipzig,
Phone & Fax: 001-49-341-9900440

Donald Phillips, Germany and the Transnational Building blocks for Post-National Community. (Greenwood). This work links a focus upon the Federal Republic, central to post-Cold War Europe's future, with a study of private business, perhaps the most indispensable agent of Germany's post-1945 rehabilitation. Here, it is shown how interdependent business needs may overcome nationalist and
institutional conceptions in the transnational integration processes

Donald Phillips, Post-National Patriotism and the Feasibility of Post-National Community in United Germany (Greenwood). Here, focussing on the unification process and racism in post-unification Germany, the falsehood of the national precept of organisation is highlighted to show how German-based transnational business may play a leading role in the development of a sense of post-national patriotism.




Recent Theses and Dissertations:


SAPMO Bibliotheksbriefe

The latest issues of the SAPMO library's list of its holdings include:

Randy Bytwerk can provide a photocopy for those find a particular issue interesting.


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Requests and Queries

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EGSA Officers for 1998-2001


Laurence McFalls
Department de science politique
Université de Montreal
C.P. 6128
succursale Centre-ville
Montréal, Québec H3C 3J7

Email: laurence.mcfalls@umontreal.ca


Henry Krisch
Dept. of Political Science
University of Connecticut
341 Mansfield Road
Storrs, CT 06269-102

Phone: (860)429-8552
Fax: (860) 486-3347
Email: henryk@uconnvm.uconn.edu

Membership and Treasurer:

Meredith Heiser
707 Laurel Ave.
Menlo Park, CA 94025
Email: mah2369@fhda.edu


Randall Bytwerk
CAS Department
Calvin College
3201 Burton SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49546

Phone: (616) 957-6286
Fax: (616) 957-6601

Members- at-Large:

Ellen Anderson
History Associates Incorporated
5 Choke Cherry Road, Suite 280
Rockville, MD 20850

tel. 301-670-0076
Email: ellen@zzapp.org

Scott Gissendanner
Potsdamer St. 82
15711 Koenigs Wusterhausen; Germany
Email: gissendanner@t-online.de


Bradden Weaver
583 Valley View Dr.
New Holland, PA 17577
Email: bweaver@zedat.fu-berlin.de

October 2000 EGSA Newsletter
Last updated 24 October 2000
Web Page by Randall Bytwerk
Calvin College
URL: <http://www.calvin.edu/academic/cas/egsg/latest.htm>