In times of transregional upheavals and the revival of nationalist movements and governments, the debate about literature and the political has gained new momentum. The Reading Group “Engagement” and the international Summer School 2019 “The Politics of Literature – Literature and Politics” aim to develop new approaches to questions concerning the relationship between literature and politics by rethinking the debate within current political contexts.
Up to 20 participants will first meet in Leipzig to attend the Reading Group “Engagement”, before travelling to Berlin where the Summer School “The Politics of Literature – Literature and Politics” will take place with up to 30 participants. Furthermore, participants are invited to attend the separate, but thematically overlapping conference “Poetic Critique”, held in Berlin from 27.–29.06.2019.
Through discussions, lectures, and workshops with German and international experts, we will attempt to both remap transnational and multilingual perspectives on this discourse as well as develop possible new ways of thinking and analyzing the relations between literature and politics today.
This years Summer School is being organized in cooperation with The Cluster of Excellence 2020 "Temporal Communities" and The German Literature Archive (Deutsches Literaturarchiv – DLA).
The three-day reading group “Engagement”, held by Prof. Dr. Robert Kaufman (Berkeley), Dr. Robert Zwarg (Marbach), Prof. Dr. Anne Eusterschulte (Berlin) and Sebastian Tränkle (Berlin) in Leipzig, will take place in the week preceding the Summer School. Its aim is a close reading and discussion of central texts that preceded Theodor W. Adorno’s essays »Commitment« and »Reconciliation under Duress«: writings, for instance, by Jean-Paul Sartre, Ernst Bloch, Georg Lukács, and Bertolt Brecht.
Following a terminological discussion, the Summer School in Berlin will consist of half-day workshops in which we will reflect on international institutions vis-à-vis literature and politics, patterns of power in the processes of literary production, and the functions of poetry within protest movements. We will also discuss literature in dissident contexts and literature as an autonomous form of expression.
The Summer School will include various historical and cultural case studies such as the German Vormärz, the 68 student movements, the Occupy Wall Street movement, the Turkish Gezi Park protests and the 19th and 20th century Arabic debate on “engagement” in light of the so-called “Arab Spring”.
Experts: PD Dr. Patrick Eiden-Offe (Berlin), Prof. Dr. Tarek El-Ariss (Dartmouth), Prof. Dr. Anne Eusterschulte (Berlin), Prof. Dr. Martin Halliwell (Leicester), Prof. Dr. Robert Kaufmann (Berkeley), Olumide Popoola (London), Prof. Dr. Gisèle Sapiro (Paris), Sebastian Tränkle (Berlin), Dr. Robert Zwarg (Marbach)
How to apply
Before you send your application, we kindly ask you to carefully read the following information.
Please indicate in your application, by using the reference code, which option you are applying for:
-Option Leipzig and Berlin (reference code: 2019 L/B)
You are applying for both events; the Reading Group “Engagement” in Leipzig (24.–27.06.2019) and the FSGS-Summer School “The Politics of Literature – Literature and Politics” (01.–04.07.2019) in Berlin.
-Option Berlin only (reference code: 2019 B)
You are applying for the FSGS-Summer School “The Politics of Literature – Literature and Politics” (01.–04.07.2019) in Berlin only.
400 EUR for the Reading Group and the Summer School (reference code: 2019 L/B)
320 EUR for the Summer School only (reference code: 2019 B)
The fees include lunch, refreshments and coffee as well as the opening and closing reception. For the participants attending both the Reading Group and the Summer School (reference code: 2019 L/B), transportation from Leipzig to Berlin will be included.
Please note: The participants are asked to make their own arrangements for their accommodation in Berlin. If a candidate is able to prove that s/he has no financial resources to cover the expenses through their home university, travel grants or alike, the costs for travel and accommodation may be covered upon request. In certain circumstances, the participation fee may also be remitted.
In case the accommodation is organized by FSGS, the participants will stay at Seminaris Campus Hotel Berlin in a shared twin bedroom with another participant.
The entire Summer School will be held in English.