Completed research projects of Department I

Forschung

Projekte

Book cover.

The Citizen and his Rights
The Transformation of Legal Culture from Late Socialist to Post-socialist Society in East Germany from 1980 to 2000

Anja Schröter

Completed associated PhD project

This PhD project focuses on changes in legal culture in East Germany against the backdrop of the collapse of state socialism, revolution and transformation since accession to the Federal Republic of Germany during the period from 1980...

Volunteering in Local Communities between Late Socialism and Liberal Capitalism: The History of Volunteer Fire Departments in Germany and East Central Europe, 1980-2000

The project was completed in 2017 at the ZZF and has been continued since then at the Hannah-Arendt-Institut für Totalitarismusforschung e.V. an der Technischen Universität Dresden (HAIT)
Organised voluntary engagement for the common good of the local community was and...

Bookcover: Alfred Meusel. Soziologe und Historiker zwischen Bürgertum und Marxismus (1896–1960)

Reflections on 1989/90 in Literary Texts of Younger German and Czech Authors

Rainette Lange

Compleated associated PhD project

This project focused on a comparative analysis of literary texts of young German and Czech authors dealing with the final years of the GDR and the ČSSR, as well as with the events of 1989/90 and its social consequences.

The building of the Central Committee of the SED on the Marx-Engels-Square, 1967. Photo: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-FO427-202-001 / Koard, Peter / CC-BY-SA 3.0, Bundesarchiv Bild 183-FO427-202-001, Berlin, Gebäude des ZK der SED, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE

Revolutionary Headquarters and Seat of Government: The Apparatus of the Central Committee of the SED as the Governmental Centre of East Germany, 1946 to 1989

Rüdiger Bergien

Completed Research Project

The subject of the project are the departments of the Central Committee of the SED and the institutes subordinated to these in their role as intermediate organisations of rule and control. Points of focus are the question of cultural and social-...

Cover

Communist Intellectuals in Western Europe

Mario Keßler

Completed book project

In 2015 and 2017, Mario Kessler (ZZF), Axel Schildt, and Knud Andresen (both Forschungsstelle für Zeitgeschichte Hamburg) organized  two conferences on communist intellectuals in post-Second World War Western Europe. Papers of both conferences were...

"What's the Meaning of 1917? Glances from a 100-Year Distance"

Completed Project
Publications and Events on the Occasion of the 100th Anniversary of the October Revolution.

Bookcover: Albert Schreiner. Kommunist mit Lebensumbrüchen

The Warsaw Uprising Monument got unveiled in 1989. Foto: Dhirad, Warsaw wwII, CC BY-SA 3.0

Divided Memory?
The Second World in the Historical Culture of the People’s Republic of Poland

Florian Peters
Completed PhD project

The largest anti-Communist opposition movement in Eastern Europe, the Polish ‘Solidarność’ of the years 1980/81, constitutes an important, if not central, element of the pan-European transformation processes in...

October 1961. Children keep their friendship across the barbed wire border between East and West Berlin. From the booklet "A City Torn Apart: Building of the Berlin Wall." Photo: The Central Intelligence Agency, Children in East and West Berlin - Flickr - The Central Intelligence Agency, public domain, details on Wikimedia Commons

The Construction of the Berlin Wall and its Impact on East German Society: A Psycho-geographical Analysis (1960s)

Completed associated PhD project

This PhD project questions the repercussions of the construction of the Wall on GDR society. The study focuses on the Wall's effect on East Berliners' everyday lives and how they had to interact with and circulate within these new...

Book cover.

People’s Police and Legitimisation of Power in Socialist Romania, 1960–1989

Ciprian Cirniala
Completed associated PhD project

Numerous allegories of a James Bond in the service of his people, a figure of Herculean strength or a person in blue appeared in the mass media discourse of socialist Romania from 1960 to 1989....

Havarie: East German Society Facing Industrial Disasters

Thomas Lindenberger
Completed Research project

Severe industrial accidents leading both to major disruptions in production and a relevant number of casualties are examined in order to reconstruct consensus, collusion and conflict between the different social actors...

Removal of the emblem of the SED on a building of the Central Committee on Werderscher Markt, 1990. Photo: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-1990-0123-027 / Oberst, Klaus / CC-BY-SA 3.0, Bundesarchiv Bild 183-1990-0123-027, Berlin, SED-Symbol an ehem. ZK-Gebäude, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE

The SED between the Construction and the Fall of the Berlin Wall: Social History of a Communist State Party

Jens Gieseke

Completed Project

Collaborative project with the Chair of Modern and Contemporary History at the Friedrich Schiller University, Jena. Funded by the Federal Foundation for the Reappraisal of the SED Dictatorship

Bookcover: Reformen und Reformer im Kommunismus

Bookcover: Reformen und Reformer im Kommunismus. Für Theodor Bergmann. Eine Würdigung

Reformen und Reformer im Kommunismus

Mario Keßler

Compleated book project

Over decades there were in the East and in the West different personalities in the communist parties and their governing bodies who sought to democratize communism as ideology, political movement and state order. This book portrays a great number...

Psychiatry and Society in the GDR in the Sixties

Fanny Le Bonhomme
Completed associated PhD project

The focus of this research study is on the relationship between psychiatry and society in the GDR in the 1960s. It should be demonstrated to what extent the institution of psychiatry – and the sources produced by it...

Physical Violence and State Legitimacy in Late Socialism – An International Research Network

Jan C. Behrends

Compleated SAW-Project

The network investigates the relationship between physical violence and state legitimacy in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, addressing the following questions: How did the state control violence after Stalin? How did political legitimation change after 1956?...

Children playing in Berlin during the 1948 blockade. Photo: U.S. Department of Agriculture. Quelle: Flickr, Lizenz: public domain

Americans in West Berlin, 1945-1994
The History of an Imagined Community

Stefanie Eisenhuth

Completed associated PhD project

My study aims to question the popular myth of an alleged ‘special relationship’ between the United States and West Berlin after the Second World War by taking a closer look at local troop-community relations. Who supported contacts between...

Bookcover:

Building Bridges and Crossing Borders
Historians during the Cold War

Jan C. Behrends, Jürgen Danyel

Completed Research project

The project aims to historicize the role historians played in the 20th century.

A member of the SED recieves his party book, Leipzig 1951. Photo: Deutsche Fotothek‎, Fotothek df roe-neg 0006041 018 SED-Mitglied erhält sein SED-Mitgliedsbuch, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE

‘Where there is a comrade, there is the party!’?
Stability and Erosion of the SED Party Base from 1979 to 1989

Sabine Pannen
Completed associated PhD project

This PhD project focuses on the rank-and-file members of the former socialist state party (SED) separately to its party leaders and apparatus. In the 1980s, almost every fifth adult in the GDR held a party document. For...

The West German Left and its Association of Left-Wing Bookshops, 1970–1981

Completed associated PhD project

Since the end of the 1960s leftist bookshops and political publishing houses have been popping up like mushrooms all across the Federal Republic of Germany and West Berlin. The soil for this sudden appearance had been prepared by the...

Cover of the publication.

East German Historians since Reunification
A Discipline Transformed

Mario Keßler

Completed book project

With German reunification and the demise of the German Democratic Republic in 1990, East German historians and their traditions of historiography were removed from mainstream discourse in Germany and relegated to the periphery. By the mid-1990s, few...

Bertolt Brecht and Hanns Eisler at the preparatory meeting of the Academy of Arts of the GDR on 21.03.1950. Photo: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-19204-2132 / CC-BY-SA 3.0, Bundesarchiv Bild 183-19204-2132, Berlin, Bertolt Brecht und Hanns Eisler, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE

West-Emigranten
German Communists between US Exile and GDR

Mario Keßler

Compleated Book project
This book examines the traces of German communist refugees in the USA who returned to the GDR after the end of the Nazi regime. It describes both their experiences of exile in the capitalist society of the USA and their living conditions in East...

Study on Politically-motivated Forced Adoptions in the GDR

Agnès Arp

Completed proposal development for a project

This is a study of politically-motivated forced adoptions in the GDR on behalf of the Commissioner of the Federal Government for the New Federal States and the Federal Ministry for Economic...

The SED in the Province
Party Presence and Regional Practices of Domination (1961–1989)

Andrea Bahr

Completed PhD project

The PhD project focuses on the SED-Kreisleitungen – the local party leaders and the local party apparatuses of the former socialist state party (SED). These local power structures were located between the population on the one hand and the central...

Imprisonment statement for the german journalist Karl Wilhelm Fricke, 1955, with a signature of Stasi-Chief Erich Milke. Photo: DDR Staatssicherheit, BStU, Karl Wilhelm Fricke - Haftbeschluss 1955, marked as public domain, details on Wikimedia Commons

Die historische Aufarbeitung der Zwangsarbeit politischer Häftlinge im DDR-Strafvollzug

Jan Philip Wölbern
Completed Research Project

Studie im Auftrag der Beauftragten der Bundesregierung für die Neuen Bundesländer (gefördert bis 2015)

Completed research projects of Department I

Forschung

Projekte

Book cover.

The Citizen and his Rights
The Transformation of Legal Culture from Late Socialist to Post-socialist Society in East Germany from 1980 to 2000

Anja Schröter

Completed associated PhD project

This PhD project focuses on changes in legal culture in East Germany against the backdrop of the collapse of state socialism, revolution and transformation since accession to the Federal Republic of Germany during the period from 1980...

Volunteering in Local Communities between Late Socialism and Liberal Capitalism: The History of Volunteer Fire Departments in Germany and East Central Europe, 1980-2000

The project was completed in 2017 at the ZZF and has been continued since then at the Hannah-Arendt-Institut für Totalitarismusforschung e.V. an der Technischen Universität Dresden (HAIT)
Organised voluntary engagement for the common good of the local community was and...

Bookcover: Alfred Meusel. Soziologe und Historiker zwischen Bürgertum und Marxismus (1896–1960)

Reflections on 1989/90 in Literary Texts of Younger German and Czech Authors

Rainette Lange

Compleated associated PhD project

This project focused on a comparative analysis of literary texts of young German and Czech authors dealing with the final years of the GDR and the ČSSR, as well as with the events of 1989/90 and its social consequences.

The building of the Central Committee of the SED on the Marx-Engels-Square, 1967. Photo: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-FO427-202-001 / Koard, Peter / CC-BY-SA 3.0, Bundesarchiv Bild 183-FO427-202-001, Berlin, Gebäude des ZK der SED, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE

Revolutionary Headquarters and Seat of Government: The Apparatus of the Central Committee of the SED as the Governmental Centre of East Germany, 1946 to 1989

Rüdiger Bergien

Completed Research Project

The subject of the project are the departments of the Central Committee of the SED and the institutes subordinated to these in their role as intermediate organisations of rule and control. Points of focus are the question of cultural and social-...

Cover

Communist Intellectuals in Western Europe

Mario Keßler

Completed book project

In 2015 and 2017, Mario Kessler (ZZF), Axel Schildt, and Knud Andresen (both Forschungsstelle für Zeitgeschichte Hamburg) organized  two conferences on communist intellectuals in post-Second World War Western Europe. Papers of both conferences were...

"What's the Meaning of 1917? Glances from a 100-Year Distance"

Completed Project
Publications and Events on the Occasion of the 100th Anniversary of the October Revolution.

Bookcover: Albert Schreiner. Kommunist mit Lebensumbrüchen

The Warsaw Uprising Monument got unveiled in 1989. Foto: Dhirad, Warsaw wwII, CC BY-SA 3.0

Divided Memory?
The Second World in the Historical Culture of the People’s Republic of Poland

Florian Peters
Completed PhD project

The largest anti-Communist opposition movement in Eastern Europe, the Polish ‘Solidarność’ of the years 1980/81, constitutes an important, if not central, element of the pan-European transformation processes in...

October 1961. Children keep their friendship across the barbed wire border between East and West Berlin. From the booklet "A City Torn Apart: Building of the Berlin Wall." Photo: The Central Intelligence Agency, Children in East and West Berlin - Flickr - The Central Intelligence Agency, public domain, details on Wikimedia Commons

The Construction of the Berlin Wall and its Impact on East German Society: A Psycho-geographical Analysis (1960s)

Completed associated PhD project

This PhD project questions the repercussions of the construction of the Wall on GDR society. The study focuses on the Wall's effect on East Berliners' everyday lives and how they had to interact with and circulate within these new...

Book cover.

People’s Police and Legitimisation of Power in Socialist Romania, 1960–1989

Ciprian Cirniala
Completed associated PhD project

Numerous allegories of a James Bond in the service of his people, a figure of Herculean strength or a person in blue appeared in the mass media discourse of socialist Romania from 1960 to 1989....

Havarie: East German Society Facing Industrial Disasters

Thomas Lindenberger
Completed Research project

Severe industrial accidents leading both to major disruptions in production and a relevant number of casualties are examined in order to reconstruct consensus, collusion and conflict between the different social actors...

Removal of the emblem of the SED on a building of the Central Committee on Werderscher Markt, 1990. Photo: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-1990-0123-027 / Oberst, Klaus / CC-BY-SA 3.0, Bundesarchiv Bild 183-1990-0123-027, Berlin, SED-Symbol an ehem. ZK-Gebäude, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE

The SED between the Construction and the Fall of the Berlin Wall: Social History of a Communist State Party

Jens Gieseke

Completed Project

Collaborative project with the Chair of Modern and Contemporary History at the Friedrich Schiller University, Jena. Funded by the Federal Foundation for the Reappraisal of the SED Dictatorship

Bookcover: Reformen und Reformer im Kommunismus

Bookcover: Reformen und Reformer im Kommunismus. Für Theodor Bergmann. Eine Würdigung

Reformen und Reformer im Kommunismus

Mario Keßler

Compleated book project

Over decades there were in the East and in the West different personalities in the communist parties and their governing bodies who sought to democratize communism as ideology, political movement and state order. This book portrays a great number...

Psychiatry and Society in the GDR in the Sixties

Fanny Le Bonhomme
Completed associated PhD project

The focus of this research study is on the relationship between psychiatry and society in the GDR in the 1960s. It should be demonstrated to what extent the institution of psychiatry – and the sources produced by it...

Physical Violence and State Legitimacy in Late Socialism – An International Research Network

Jan C. Behrends

Compleated SAW-Project

The network investigates the relationship between physical violence and state legitimacy in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union, addressing the following questions: How did the state control violence after Stalin? How did political legitimation change after 1956?...

Children playing in Berlin during the 1948 blockade. Photo: U.S. Department of Agriculture. Quelle: Flickr, Lizenz: public domain

Americans in West Berlin, 1945-1994
The History of an Imagined Community

Stefanie Eisenhuth

Completed associated PhD project

My study aims to question the popular myth of an alleged ‘special relationship’ between the United States and West Berlin after the Second World War by taking a closer look at local troop-community relations. Who supported contacts between...

Bookcover:

Building Bridges and Crossing Borders
Historians during the Cold War

Jan C. Behrends, Jürgen Danyel

Completed Research project

The project aims to historicize the role historians played in the 20th century.

A member of the SED recieves his party book, Leipzig 1951. Photo: Deutsche Fotothek‎, Fotothek df roe-neg 0006041 018 SED-Mitglied erhält sein SED-Mitgliedsbuch, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE

‘Where there is a comrade, there is the party!’?
Stability and Erosion of the SED Party Base from 1979 to 1989

Sabine Pannen
Completed associated PhD project

This PhD project focuses on the rank-and-file members of the former socialist state party (SED) separately to its party leaders and apparatus. In the 1980s, almost every fifth adult in the GDR held a party document. For...

The West German Left and its Association of Left-Wing Bookshops, 1970–1981

Completed associated PhD project

Since the end of the 1960s leftist bookshops and political publishing houses have been popping up like mushrooms all across the Federal Republic of Germany and West Berlin. The soil for this sudden appearance had been prepared by the...

Cover of the publication.

East German Historians since Reunification
A Discipline Transformed

Mario Keßler

Completed book project

With German reunification and the demise of the German Democratic Republic in 1990, East German historians and their traditions of historiography were removed from mainstream discourse in Germany and relegated to the periphery. By the mid-1990s, few...

Bertolt Brecht and Hanns Eisler at the preparatory meeting of the Academy of Arts of the GDR on 21.03.1950. Photo: Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-19204-2132 / CC-BY-SA 3.0, Bundesarchiv Bild 183-19204-2132, Berlin, Bertolt Brecht und Hanns Eisler, CC BY-SA 3.0 DE

West-Emigranten
German Communists between US Exile and GDR

Mario Keßler

Compleated Book project
This book examines the traces of German communist refugees in the USA who returned to the GDR after the end of the Nazi regime. It describes both their experiences of exile in the capitalist society of the USA and their living conditions in East...

Study on Politically-motivated Forced Adoptions in the GDR

Agnès Arp

Completed proposal development for a project

This is a study of politically-motivated forced adoptions in the GDR on behalf of the Commissioner of the Federal Government for the New Federal States and the Federal Ministry for Economic...

The SED in the Province
Party Presence and Regional Practices of Domination (1961–1989)

Andrea Bahr

Completed PhD project

The PhD project focuses on the SED-Kreisleitungen – the local party leaders and the local party apparatuses of the former socialist state party (SED). These local power structures were located between the population on the one hand and the central...

Imprisonment statement for the german journalist Karl Wilhelm Fricke, 1955, with a signature of Stasi-Chief Erich Milke. Photo: DDR Staatssicherheit, BStU, Karl Wilhelm Fricke - Haftbeschluss 1955, marked as public domain, details on Wikimedia Commons

Die historische Aufarbeitung der Zwangsarbeit politischer Häftlinge im DDR-Strafvollzug

Jan Philip Wölbern
Completed Research Project

Studie im Auftrag der Beauftragten der Bundesregierung für die Neuen Bundesländer (gefördert bis 2015)