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Bielefeld Graduate School

in History and Sociology

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Workshops and conferences 2011

Knowledge on Display: Exhibitions as Mode and Media in the Communication of Knowledge in the 20th Century (21 - 23 July 2011)

Organisers: Christian Sammer, Thomas Steller, Christian Vogel

During the 19th century, exhibitons developed to independent cultural "events of demonstration and representation". Similar to fairs and museums, they connected education, enlightenment and information to pleasure and the mediation of knowledge, which is one reason why they became attractive to millions of people. Regarding the dual nature of exhibitions as media of the mediation and of the presentation of knowledge, it seems reasonable to define them as elements of a relationship between economy, politics, science and publicity. In this context exhibitions appear to be the results of different contents of knowledge and of numerous system rationalities.

The workshop was dedicated to those researchers who concentrate on working historically on exhibitions as ways of presentation and of mediation of knowledge. It has brought together German and international researchers of different scientific perspectives.

The United States as a Developing Society: Analytical Perspectives (17-18 June, 24-25 June, 1-2 July)

Organisers: Alan Lessoff, Anna-Lisa Müller
Guests: Richard Schneirov (Indiana State University), Kate Masur (Northwestern University), Jørn Brøndal (University of Southern Denmark)

This three-week workshop provided historians and social scientists with an intense introduction to theoretical, historiographic, transnational, and comparative approaches that scholars of the United States use when examining the decades between the Civil War and World War I, the period of rapid economic development and cultural and political transformation when the foundations of the country's twentieth-century power took shape. Participants gained a basic understanding of the assumptions, at times unspoken, behind the ways that American historians write about and analyse the United States as a developing society. Participants have also had opportunities to present and discuss their own works-in-progress with visiting experts versed in the relevant themes.

Please visit for a detailed programme.

Russian and German Identities across Time and Borders (8-10 Apr. at the University of Notre Dame)

Organisers: BGHS, Semion Lyandres, Stephan Merl, Andreas Vasilache, Dietmar Wulff, Tatjana Zimenkova

In cooperation with: Department of History (Bielefeld University), Department of History (University of Notre Dame, USA), Center of European and German Studies (Bielefeld University and St. Petersburg State University, Russia)

The second part of the workshop established the year before by the CGES, the University of Notre Dame and the BGHS again focused on Russian and German identities. This year it took place in Notre Dame. Four plenary sessions consisted of presentations and discussions. The two keynote speeches, held by Stephan Merl and Tatjana Zimenkova, covered the interdisciplinary perspective of the workshop, too. The excursion took the participants inter alia to the Amish County.


Between Work and Family: Change in employment relationships and in the private life and its interdependence (31 March - 1 April 2011)

Organisers: Tobias Graf, Stefanie Hoherz
In cooperation with: Westfälisch-Lippische Universitätsgesellschaft
Commentators: Martin Diewald (Bielefeld), Mechtild Oechsle (Bielefeld), Michael Wagner (Cologne)

This workshop examined the changes in the labour markets and the impact of those changes on private sphere. In addition we also looked how changes in the private sphere affect the labour market and organisations. The workshop provides doctoral researchers the opportunity to present and discuss a research question of their dissertation project with experts and peers.

Research Workshop: Qualitative Data in the Sociology of Work (19 - 22 Jan. 2011)

Organisers: Almut Kirschbaum, Melanie Steiner
In cooperation with: Hans-Böckler Foundation
Guests: Jens Bergmann (Hannover), Peter Kels (Darmstadt), Gabriele Wagner (Hannover)

Whereby research colloquia usually examine the thematic focus of individual dissertation projects, this research workshop focused on applying the methods of reconstructive social research. The research workshop provided doctoral researchers with the opportunity to discuss data from their dissertation project with the group, in particular specific methodological problems. Thematically, the research workshop focused on questions from a sociology of work perspective (but included to the sociologies of organisations, business and gender, too).

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