UoA 53b: German

All members of academic staff in the UCL German Department are actively engaged in high quality research. We are also committed to making contributions to the discipline through participation in editorial work and professional organizations, serving on relevant committees and boards, organizing workshops, seminars, and conferences, and delivering invited lectures nationally and internationally. The inter-disciplinary character of research in German studies at UCL is enhanced by the context of the Centre for European Studies, which is based in and run by members of the German Department. The CES acts as an umbrella organization for research, including EU-funded Marie Curie Fellows, PhD students, and students on MA programmes in German History and German Studies as well as European Society, European Thought, and European Culture.

Research by members of the Department ranges from medieval to modern German and Austrian literary and cultural studies, linguistics, and history.

Coxon has upheld the Department’s strong tradition in medieval German studies. In addition to his listed pieces, Coxon has recently completed a substantial monograph on late medieval comic short stories (in press), as well as a series of articles on ridicule, mockery and punitive laughter in late medieval urban culture in preparation for his next monograph.

Kord’s research lies primarily in the ‘classic’ era of eighteenth-and nineteenth-century German literature, enriching our knowledge by unearthing the writings of less well-known female and peasant writers. Women’s writing in the modern period has been a concern of Bird, whose second monograph was a detailed analysis of female and national identity in the works of three German-writing authors: Ingeborg Bachmann, Anne Duden, and Emine Özdamar. More recently she has been researching the theme of shame in relation to the content and form of narrative texts, focusing on two novels by Keller and Raabe; she is also analysing comic or humorous moments in Bachmann's writing, exploring questions of melodramatic excess. Puw Davies has published academic articles in Welsh on poetry and translation in lesser-used languages; contemporary Welsh literature and poetry; and on poetry after the Holocaust. Predominantly however, since publication of her book on The Tale of Bluebeard she has been exploring the culture of protest in the 1960s and 1970s in the Federal Republic of Germany. Beniston’s research in Austrian studies focuses particularly on drama, contributing on the Salzburg Festival for A Companion to the Works of Hugo von Hofmannsthal, publishing on the Austrian dramatist Max Mell, and on theatre; she has also contributed to comparative studies, editing an issue of Austrian Studies dedicated to ‘Austria and France’ and writing on the early German-language reception of a key work of the French renouveau catholique, Paul Claudel’s L’Annonce faite à Marie. Horan’s work in linguistics ranges from analysis of twentieth-century texts concerned with issues of power (dictatorships, gender) to analysis of the evolution of the German language, with a particular interest in the sociolinguistics of cursing and swearing.

The historians in the Department are also highly productive. Fischer, a new recruit to the profession, has published articles and a revised version of his doctoral thesis with CUP; his current projects focus around the topic of anti-Semitism. In addition to his listed publications, Hewitson has nearly completed his book on Nationalism in Germany, 1848-1934; and has been continuing his British Academy funded project on Germany, Europe and the West, 1871-1933, which examines German ideas of the west and investigating transformations of political and cultural identity during an era of changing means of communication, new types of government, shifting alliances and a destructive world war.

In addition to her listed monographs on Historical Theory, and The People’s State, and her edited book Un-Civilizing Processes?, Fulbrook has written some twenty research articles, as well as two brief introductory textbooks on Hitler. The most significant work not included in this submission is an edited book on Power and Society in the GDR, 1961-1979: The Normalization of Rule? (Berghahn, 2008). This presents the results of the AHRC project on state and society in the GDR. This project firmly locates the history of the GDR within the broader history of post-war reconstruction of political structures and private lives in both Eastern and Western Europe. It also, with the concept of ‘normalization’, develops an approach which is of wider relevance to historical analysis of processes of stabilization and routinisation following periods of upheaval in other times and places.

Colleagues work very well together in this inter-disciplinary environment, as evidenced in our most recent collaborative volume, Un-Civilizing Processes? Excess and Transgression in German Culture and Society: Perspectives Debating with Norbert Elias (Rodopi, 2007), edited by Fulbrook. The next departmental project is on the topic of laughter and ridicule, and will be edited by Coxon.

Download full text of the RA5a statement for German (pdf 80Kb)

Staff names below link to submitted publications:

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Page last modified on 20 jan 08 07:28