Advancing Research

German Historical Institute Washington

The GHI promotes research in three core fields: German history, American & transatlantic history, and global history.

Supporting Scholars

German Historical Institute Washington

The GHI works to enable scholars to conduct research and share their findings with their colleagues.

Building Networks

German Historical Institute Washington

The GHI’s programs rest on the assumption that communication is as important as research in advancing historical understanding.

The German Historical Institute Washington (GHI) is a center for advanced historical research. Working with junior and senior scholars around the world, the GHI facilitates dialogue and collaboration across national and disciplinary boundaries.

 

Latest News


Opportunities

Event & Administrative Assistant, GHI PRO (deadline extended)

Deadline: February 5, 2021 | The Pacific Regional Office of the Germany Historical Institute Washington in Berkeley California is hiring an Event &…

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Video

Video celebrating our Pacific Regional Office at UC Berkeley's third anniversary

In November 2017 the GHI Washington opened its Pacific Regional Office at the University of California, Berkeley. Within the past three years, it has…

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Call for Papers

Historicizing the Refugee Experience, 17th-21st centuries

Deadline: February 21, 2021 | First Annual International Seminar in Historical Refugee Studies in Essen (Germany)

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Press Release

Please take our survey for our publishing program

Take our survey to let us know what publications and projects you have found useful and what we could do more of to better serve your professional…

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History of the Americas & Transatlantic History

GHI Lecture Series GHI “Mobilities and Migration across the Americas”

The GHI is pleased to announce a new virtual lecture series “Mobilities and Migration across the Americas” planned for the spring term co-sponsored by…

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Events & Conferences

The GHI organizes international scholarly conferences, public programs and lectures on a wide variety of historical topics.

Jan 22, 2021

Virtual Postgraduate Forum Get-Together

GAAS Virtual Get-Together | 9am - 11am ET | Organized by Jana Keck (GHI Washington), Whitney Peterson (University of Stuttgart), and Melissa Schlecht (University of Stuttgart)

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Jan 27, 2021

Ruin and Renewal: Civilizing Europe after the Second World War

Lecture (virtual) | 10am -11am PT | Speaker: Paul Betts (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

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Jan 29, 2021

Migration and Racism in the Americas: The Case of Migrants in the United States

Lecture (virtual) | 12pm ET | Speaker: Ramón Grosfoguel (University of California, Berkeley); Comment: Julia Roth (Bielefeld University)

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Feb 05, 2021

Third Annual West Coast Germanists' Workshop: Facts, Fakes, and Representations

Workshop at University of California, Berkeley | Conveners: Sheer Ganor (Pacific Regional Office of the German Historical Institute Washington), Isabel Richter (UC Berkeley)

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Apr 19, 2021

Migration and Racism in the United States and Germany in the Twentieth Century

Virtual Workshop | Conveners: Maria Alexopoulou (University of Mannheim), Elisabeth Engel (GHI Washington)

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Apr 19, 2021

Climate Change, Energy, and Sustainability in the Pacific Region: Knowledge, Policies, and Transfers (1970s-present)

Conference at the German Institute for Japan Studies, Tokyo | Conveners: Sarah Beringer (German Historical Institute Washington D.C.), Benjamin Beuerle (German Historical Institute Moscow), Sonja Ganseforth (German Institute for Japanese Studies (DIJ)) and Yufei Zhou (DIJ); in collaboration with the Max Weber Foundation Research Group at the National University of Singapore and the Max Weber Foundation China Branch Office in Beijing

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Apr 26, 2021

Change in Motion: Environment, Migration, and Mobilities

Workshop at the Pacific Regional Office of the GHI in Berkeley | Conveners: Sarah Earnshaw (Pacific Regional Office of the German Historical Institute Washington, Berkeley) and Samantha Fox (Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility, The New School, New York)

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Jun 07, 2021

Mobilities, Exclusion, and Migrants' Agency in the Pacific Realm in a Transregional and Diachronic Perspective

Conference at the University of California, Berkeley | Conveners: Albert Manke (GHI's Regional Office at UC Berkeley) and Sören Urbansky (German Historical Institute Washington)

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Jun 15, 2021

26th Transatlantic Doctoral Seminar: German History in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries

Virtual Seminar at GHI Washington | Conveners: Anna von der Goltz (Georgetown University) and Richard F. Wetzell (GHI Washington)

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Sep 23, 2021

Environments of Exile: Refugees, Nature, and Representations

Biennial Conference of the North American Society for Exile Studies at Queen's University, Kingston, ON | Conveners: Swen Steinberg (Queen’s University, Kingston / GHI PRO) and Helga Schreckenberger (University of Vermont, Burlington)

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Sep 30, 2021

12th Medieval History Seminar

Seminar at GHI London | Conveners: Paul Freedman (Yale University), Bernhard Jussen (Goethe Universität Frankfurt am Main), Simon MacLean (University of St Andrews), Fiona Griffiths (Stanford University), Len Scales (Durham University), and Dorothea Weltecke (Goethe University Frankfurt) | Organized by the German Historical Institute London in co-operation with the German Historical Institute Washington

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Sep 30, 2021

Sexuality and the Law in German-Speaking Europe

Seminar at Forty-Fifth Annual Conference of the German Studies Association, Indianapolis, Indiana | Conveners: Martin Lücke (Freie Universität Berlin), Veronika Springmann (Freie Universität Berlin), and Richard F. Wetzell (German Historical Institute Washington)

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Oct 12, 2021

Historicizing the Refugee Experience, 17th - 21st Centuries

First Annual International Seminar in Historical Refugee Studies at the KWI in Essen | Organized by The University of Duisburg-Essen (UDE), the German Historical Institute in Washington (GHI) and the National History Center of the American Historical Association (NHC), in cooperation with the Interdisciplinary Center for Integration and Migration Research (InZentIM), the Institute for the Advanced Study in the Humanities (KWI) and the Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research (KHK/GCR21)

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Oct 18, 2021

Histories of Migration: Transatlantic and Global Perspectives

Fifth Annual Bucerius Young Scholars Forum at the Pacific Regional Office of the GHI in Berkeley | Conveners: Franziska Exeler (Department of History, Free University Berlin; Centre for History and Economics, University of Cambridge) and Sören Urbansky (Pacific Regional Office of the German Historical Institute Washington, Berkeley)

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Nov 15, 2021

Contested Meanings of Migration Facilitation: Emigration Agents, Coyotes, Rescuers, and Human Traffickers

Annual Academic and Policy Symposium: Innovation through Migration at GHI PRO | Conveners: Ulf Brunnbauer (Leibniz Institute for East and Southeast European Studies & Regensburg University) and Andrea Westermann (GHI PRO)

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Dec 13, 2021

Antisemitism and Sexuality Reconsidered

Conference at the Center for Research on Antisemitism, TU Berlin | Conveners: Stefanie Schüler-Springorum (Center for Research on Antisemitism, TU Berlin), Anna-Carolin Augustin (GHI Washington), Sebastian Bischoff (Paderborn University), Kristoff Kerl (University of Copenhagen), in cooperation with the German Historical Institute, Washington DC (GHI) and the Center for Research on Antisemitism, TU Berlin

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Nov 03, 2022

German Migrants and Migrating Knowledge in Latin American History

Conference at GHI Washington | Conveners: Simone Lässig (GHI Washington), Mario Peters (GHI Washington), H. Glenn Penny (University of Iowa), Stefan Rinke (Freie Universität Berlin)

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Research Fields


German/European & Jewish History

German/European & Jewish History

Modern German history and the history of German-speaking Jewry have been core research fields at the GHI since the institute’s founding in 1987. German migrations to North America, relations between Germany and the United States, and the flight of German Jews from Nazi Germany have been major research topics since the GHI’s early years. More recently, the GHI has given increased attention to the transnational and global dimensions of German, Central European, and Jewish history.

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History of the Americas & Transatlantic History

History of the Americas & Transatlantic History

From an initial focus on North American history and the history of the transatlantic relations, the GHI has broadened the scope of its core research agenda to encompass the Americas as a whole. Its long engagement with the histories of the United States, Canada, and North American-European ties is the point of departure for its new initiatives in the history of the Americas. GHI-supported projects are exploring the myriad entanglements linking the societies of North America, Latin America, and the Caribbean to each other and societies across the globe. The interconnections of the Atlantic and Pacific worlds are focal point of the research program of the GHI’s Pacific Regional Office in Berkeley.

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Global & Transregional History

Global & Transregional History

The GHI’s engagement with global and transregional history is an outgrowth of its work in transatlantic history and its longstanding interest in comparative history, especially historical comparisons of the U.S. and Germany. Global and transregional history at the GHI are defined less by subject matter than by analytical perspective. GHI-supported research explores processes that transcend individual polities and entangle disparate states, regions, and continents. The GHI is particularly interested in historical comparison as a tool to illuminate trends and developments at the transregional and global levels.

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History of Knowledge

History of Knowledge

The history of knowledge analyzes the production and circulation of knowledge, taking into consideration a broad spectrum of actors, practices, and social contexts. It seeks to understand the creation of knowledge orders and systems along with the power relationships upon which they rest. The development of the field has taken different paths in Europe and North America. Consequently, a central objective of the GHI’s program in the history of knowledge is to spur transatlantic exchange on research methodologies. The history of knowledge also serves as vehicle for collaboration across the GHI’s core research fields and other subfields of history. Notably, the GHI’s Pacific Regional Office in Berkeley “Migrant Knowledge” initiative is supporting research at the intersection of migration history and the history of knowledge.

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History of Migration

History of Migration

The GHI’s longstanding engagement with the migration of German-speakers to North America from the seventeenth century to the present is the foundation for the wider reaching program in migration history it launched in 2015. Current GHI-supported projects look beyond the flows of European migrants across the Atlantic and analyze migrant groups and receiving societies around the world. Particular attention is given to forced migration and comparative research on the social and cultural integration of migrants. The roles of migrants as producers and transmitters of distinctive bodies of knowledge is the focus of the “Migrant Knowledge” initiative at the GHI’s Pacific Regional Office. The collaborative project "German Heritage in Letters" draws on the tools of digital history to explore the ways German emigrants and their family and friends at home created transnational spaces of communication and knowledge circulation.

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Digital History

Digital History

The GHI’s digital history program operates at the crossroads of multiple disciplines and professions. One overarching goal is to forge links between seemingly disparate communities and pursuits: digital historians and “book” historians; projects informed by public history concerns versus those motivated by research objectives; and research and academic teaching. In addition to its own digital history projects – German History in Documents and Images, German History Intersections, and German Heritage in Letters – the GHI collaborates with partner institutions across Europe and North America in exchange and networking initiatives to support the development of digital tools and methodologies for historical research.

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Featured Projects

German History in Documents and Images (GHDI)

GHDI is a comprehensive collection of primary source materials documenting Germany's political, social, and cultural history from 1500 to the present.

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German History Intersections

The German History Intersections project is a transatlantic initiative that will begin by examining three broad themes – German identity; migration; and knowledge and education – over as many as five centuries.

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German Heritage in Letters

German Heritage in Letters is a project to create a digital collection of German-language correspondence currently held in private hands, by archives, by special collection libraries, museums, and other institutions.

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Latest Publications


Elisabeth Piller

Selling Weimar: German Public Diplomacy and the United States, 1918–1933

Transatlantische Historische Studien. Band 60. Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag, 2021.

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Bulletin 67 (Fall 2020)

Forum: New Research in Transatlantic History

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Jan C. Jansen & Simone Lässig, eds.

Refugee Crises, 1945-2000: Political and Societal Responses in International Comparison

Publications of the German Historical Institute. Cambridge University Press, 2020.

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Sophia Dafinger

Die Lehren des Luftkriegs: Sozialwissenschaftliche Expertise in den USA vom Zweiten Weltkrieg bis Vietnam

Transatlantische Historische Studien. Band 59. Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag, 2020.

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Latest Blogposts


Jan 17, 2021

Mark R. Stoneman

#MigKnow Notes 11

News and tips: one postdoc and two doctoral research positions, three calls, a book launch, and a new book series. The post #MigKnow Notes 11 first appeared in Migrant Knowledge. …

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Jan 17, 2021

Mark R. Stoneman

Call for Proposals: Fifth Annual Bucerius Young Scholars Forum

Call for proposals for "Histories of Migration: Transatlantic and Global Perspectives," October 18–21, 2021, GHI Pacific Regional Office at Berkeley. DEADLINE: February 15, 2021. The post Call for P…

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Jan 11, 2021

Editors

Editorial Team Changes

A little over a year ago, Kerstin von der Krone joined Goethe University Frankfurt am Main as head of the J. C. Senckenberg University Library's Judaica Division. As a result, she is stepping back…

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Dec 28, 2020

Joseph P. Malherek

Drifting Along: Unemployment and Interwar Social Research, from Marienthal to Muncie

Crosspost from Migrant Knowledge In January of 1929, the husband-and-wife sociologists Robert and Helen Lynd published what would become a landmark work of popular ethnography called Middletown: A Stu…

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Dec 28, 2020

Editorial Team

Drifting Along: Unemployment and Interwar Social Research, from Marienthal to Muncie

The author looks at the relationship between two famous early sociological community studies, "Middletown" and "Marienthal." The latter became Paul Lazarsfeld's "ticket out of Europe just as the conti…

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Dec 22, 2020

Mark R. Stoneman

Transatlantic Migrants and Knowledge in the U.S. Immigrant Press

The author discusses the source value of U.S. immigrant newspapers. If there are many reasons to approach them with caution, they can still help scholars learn "what migrants knew and wanted their fel…

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Dec 18, 2020

Matthew McDonald

Swedish Science and European French

Eighteenth-century Sweden was a scientific powerhouse. Its researchers gave their names to some of the most significant developments of the period, from the Linnaean system of binomial classification …

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Nov 14, 2020

Editors

Reading Tip: ‘The Book That Would Not Die’

Donna Gabaccia reflects on the reception of William Foote Whyte’s famous Street Corner Society at the Migrant Knowledge blog: William Foote Whyte’s study of Italian immigrants in the North End of …

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Nov 11, 2020

katharina hering

Interview with Digital History Fellow Jana Keck

We would like to extend a warm welcome to our new Digital History Fellow Jana Keck. Her fields of research include German and American Literature and Culture in the Nineteenth Century, Periodical Stud…

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Jul 01, 2020

Thomas Biggs

Showing or Telling: The Immersive-to-Informational Transformation of Museum Exhibits

I have vivid memories of visiting the National Museum of the Pacific War in Fredericksburg, Texas as a child in 2007. Fredericksburg, hometown of German-American and Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz, host…

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Jun 17, 2020

Thomas Biggs

Museums in the COVID-19 Crisis: International Maritime Museum Hamburg

As summer begins in Germany most establishments have reopened in some capacity, including museums. All are still operating under restrictions, with limits on numbers of visitors and mask requireme…

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May 29, 2020

juliawycital

Virtual Exhibitions at the German National Library

Julia Wycital is in her final semester in the American Studies BA program at the University of Heidelberg. Her interest in history was sparked early, during her school years, since she enjoyed reading…

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