Decolonizing German Cultural Anthropology: Narratives of Time and Space in contemporary German Villages

Jan 26, 2023  | 12:00 - 1:00pm (PT)

Lecture (Hybrid: 201 Moses Hall & Zoom) | Speaker: Sadhana Naithani (Jawaharlal Nehru University)

Sponsors: Institute of European Studies, Center for German and European Studies, German Historical Institute Washington | Pacific Office Berkeley, Folklore Program, Department of German

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The concept of ‘Stunde Null/Zero Hour’ has often been used to characterize the physical and cultural state of Germany at the end the WWII. In this talk five deeply personal and (simultaneously) social narratives mark the flow of time with reference to space in German villages since 1945 to the present. Prof. Naithani argues that micro level narratives are central to understanding stasis, continuity and change in culture. They provide deep insights into the post WWII Germany. Villages constituted a very important place of cultural consolidation in pre-war Germany, but experienced nearly complete loss of community during the war. After the war they were populated at different stages with groups and individuals from elsewhere, challenging the very notion of village community (die Gemeinschaft) and making the pre-war definitions redundant. Yet, the village has survived in Germany; the question is: what role did it play in breaking the stasis of the zero hour and what is its role in the contemporary culture of Germany?

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, we strongly recommend everyone in attendance to wear a mask at all times. Please arrive on-time to ensure you will have a seat. Thank you for your cooperation and understanding.

If you require an accommodation for effective communication (ASL interpreting/CART captioning, alternative media formats, etc.) or information about campus mobility access features in order to fully participate in this event, please contact Ray Savord at rsavord@berkeley.edu or (510) 642-4555 with as much advance notice