Research

Find out more about the research projects of the Department of Social and Economic History.

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Publications

Chronological list of publications of the department‘s staff.

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Current research projects

Prof. Dr. Ute Schneider Modeling the World. The International Map of the World (IMW) in the Age of Territoriality (1860-1970).

The starting point of the planned monograph is the thesis that maps are of outstanding importance for political action in the 20th century. The focus is on the International Map of the World (IMW) which reflects central developments of this century.

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Prof Dr. Ute Schneider / Dr. Nils Bennemann Gerardus Mercator: Edition and Translation of his correspondence

The cartographer Gerardus Mercator wrote and received more than 200 letters throughout his life. In this project, surviving letters are re-edited and in large part translated from Latin to German for the first time.

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Prof Dr. Ute Schneider / Nina Szidat ‘Active Promotion of the European Ideal’? – European References in German-British Town Twinning

Funded by the German Research Foundation, the project examines the European dimension of town twinning links and its significance in the wide array of political, economic, diplomatic and cultural processes and interests. The project therefore contributes to research into Europe’s wider societal perception, negotiation and performance.

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Prof. Dr. Ute Schneider / Prof. Dr. Ulrich Willems (WWU) / Prof. Dr. Constantin Goschler (RUB) Research Alliance: Kulturen des Kompromisses / Cultures of Compromise

The new research alliance “Kulturen des Kompromisses / Cultures of Compromise” will comparatively approach distinct cultures and epochs to systematically investigate the social, political and cultural premises of compromises. Combining the fields of – among others – history, literary studies, political science, communication studies and jurisprudence, this research alliance will bring together researchers from the University of Duisburg-Essen (UDE), the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster (WWU) and the Ruhr University Bochum (RUB). The consortium will be lead by the UDE. 

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Further research activities

Historical Doctoral College Ruhr

The HDKR is a cooperation of the chairs for Modern History of the Universities of Bochum and Duisburg-Essen, which has been successfully carried out for several years now. In recent years, it has developed into a forum and important link in the cooperation between the two institutes of history.

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Colloquium on the History of Cartography

The regularly held workshop on maps in history and history in maps is a platform for the interdisciplinary exchange among young scholars in the field of map history from the medieval period to the 21st century.

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Completed Research Projects

Timocin Celebi The Transformation from „Uni-less Spaces“ to a „Uni-Landscape“ - the North Rhine-Westphalian concept of the Gesamthochschule, 1965-1985

The project analyses the concept of the novel Gesamthochschule (a combination of regular universities and universities of applied sciences) that was initiated in 1972. Related to this were planning and space creation processes between 1965-1985 for five such universities that were imagined to be a landscape of universities“ in the federate state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

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Prof. Dr. Ute Schneider Urbanity: Forms and Stagings in Texts, Maps and Images

Martina Stercken/Ute Schneider (Hrsg.): Urbanität. Formen und Inszenierungen in Karten, Texten und Bildern, Köln u.a. 2016. Urbanity is presented in many different ways. As a cipher for a special form of living it is the subject of a multitude of text types.

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Prof. Dr. Ute Schneider / Timo Celebi Mercator: Science and Transfer of Knowledge

Ute Schneider/Stefan Brakensiek (Hrsg.): Gerhard Mercator. Wissenschaft und Wissenstransfer, Darmstadt 2015. Which significance does Mercator’s work have for us today? „Gerardus Mercator: Science and Transfer of Knowledge“ was the title of a conference that was dedicated – among other matters – to this question.

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Prof. Dr. Ute Schneider Compendium of Modernity

Friedrich Jaeger/Wolfgang Knöbl/Ute Schneider (Hrsg.): Handbuch Moderneforschung, Stuttgart 2015. Given this current research environment, the handbook opens up a new perspective. The focus is on the question of how central disciplines have taken up and discussed "Modernity".

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PD Dr. Korinna Schönhärl Financiers in Spaces of Desire. European Banks and Greece in the 19th Century

In the 19th century, international banking networks significantly contributed to financing the industrialization. But how did decisions for projects within the banks come about? The project examines the banks’ motivations and decision-making structures.

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PD Dr. Korinna Schönhärl Ruhr Area and Istanbul: The economies of urban diversity

Darja Reuschke/Monika Salzbrunn/Korinna Schönhärl (Hrsg.): The economies of urban diversity: the Ruhr area and Istanbul, New York 2013. The book opens up an innovative perspective on socio-politically urgent questions, using the European Capitals of Culture of 2010, Istanbul and the Ruhr Area, as examples.

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Supervision of dissertations

Once a year, employees and doctoral students come together to present their projects at a colloquium. In the summer of 2020, they met up at the Historisches Kolleg in Munich, an Institute for Advanced Study in History. Despite hard work, there was some spare time for a tour to the literary sights of Munich, in constant compliance with the Corona guidelines.

In 2018, the colloquium was held in Paderborn, where some time was used for sightseeing and culinary well-being toGruppenbild Paderborn Bearb

balance out the focused work sessions.

Doctoral Dissertations (First Supervisor)

Kyra Palberg Discursivations of Unemployment

The doctoral project addresses the discursivations of unemployment in mass media and its associated construction of (non-)working subjects from 1967 up to the present day. The focus lies on critical analyses of infographics.

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Timo Celebi The Transformation from „Uni-less Spaces“ to a „Uni-Landscape“ - the North Rhine-Westphalian concept of the Gesamthochschule, 1965-1985

The project analyses the concept of the novel ‘Gesamthochschule’ (a combination of regular universities and universities of applied sciences) that was initiated in 1972. Related to this were planning and space creation processes between 1965-1985 for five such universities that were imagined to be a “landscape of universities“ in the federate state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

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Nina Szidat An ‘active promotion of the European ideal’? European references in German-Britisch Town Twinning

The project examines the European dimension of town twinning links and its significance in the wide array of political, economic, diplomatic and cultural processes and interests. The project therefore contributes to research into Europe’s wider societal perception, negotiation and performance.

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Marlen Fies Development of a Teaching and Learning Arrangement to foster Reading, Writing and Language Competences in History - Focus: Handling of (Un)Certainties

Based on historical-theoretical and -scientific papers, reading and writing tasks will be designed and tested that address characteristics of historical work and historical narratives with a focus on the language of academia.

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Carsten Heth Between Supervision and Surveillance: The Reactionary Politics of the German Confederation from 1851 to 1866

The commission's work of the reactionary ‘Bundesreaktionsausschuss’ of 1851 will be used to examine ways of finding compromise. The focus is on the diplomatic negotiation processes and monitoring practices of the committee in the context of post-revolutionary constitutional revisions.

Michael Krüger The Pianist Elly Ney - her Life, Career and Artistry

A biography that not only traces the career of an artistic personality, but rather illuminates the stations of her life from various perspectives, is the result of this work. In which contexts did Elly Ney grow up and which traditions shaped her early years? What networks and transnational relationships could she draw on for her studies and career? How did the cultural transfer of her American years succeed? Why and under what circumstances did she finally return to National Socialist Germany and what role did she play in the "Third Reich"? In addition, her reception will receive attention, as will the posthumous discourse on her National Socialist past in the Federal Republic up to the present day.

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Kim Sandra Schulz “An impenetrable phalanx against barbarism and cruelty“ - International Animal Protection Congresses in the 19th Century

The project deals with the resolutions of the International Congresses of Animal Protection Societies, which were held regularly from 1860 onwards. Particular attention is paid to changes in social norms the animal protection societies sought to amend. It examines the tension between the animal rights activists, who wanted to protect society from a feared brutalization, and those who adhered to the status quo.

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Alexander Heit Insecure security experts? Coping with contingency in the German ‘Volkspolizei‘ after 1989/90

The fall of the Iron Curtain confronted the police officers of the GDR with a highly contingent situation. The project asks for the overcoming of this surplus of contingencies and the change in police practices after German reunification.

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Nadine Henn Visibility of Political Compromises. The 1977-79 Camp David Negotiations between Interaction, Staging and Representation in the Media

The project will be focused on international conflictual relations, which range from invisibility to a multitude of views. Thus forms of rapprochement and compromise in discourses and representations will be shown. Between the initiative to compromise and a treaty as compromise stands a process of political-diplomatic actions and numerous meetings, which form the starting point for the project.

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Supervised Dissertations (Co-Supervision)

Helen Wagner Past as Future? Historical Culture as a Field for Future Action for Coping with Structural Change

The project examines the extent to which the historical-cultural measures that began with the preservation of heavy industrial production sites as testimonies to industrial culture and culminated in the Capital of Culture year 2010 can be understood as a reaction to the uncertain future of a regional Ruhr identity.

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Ebbo Schröder Journalistic Practice at the Nuremburg Trial 1945/46: A Case Study on a Blind Spot in Media Historiography

The project addresses the question how content is made, printed and sent. Therefore, the focus lies on the analysis of construction processes of journalistic utterances including a definition of relevant influential factors.

Completed Doctoral Projects

Dr. Leonie Treber The myth of the “Trümmerfrau”

Publication: Mythos Trümmerfrauen: von der Trümmerbeseitigung in der Kriegs- und Nachkriegszeit und der Entstehung eines deutschen Erinnerungsortes, Essen 2014.

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Dr. Verena Kümmel Burying the Past? The Conflicts surrounding the Corpses of Pétain and Mussolini

The project examines what function the stagings of the funerals of Pétain and Mussolini and their media reproductions had for post-war societies.

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Dr. Sonja Hillerich Journalism transnational. German Foreign Correspondents in the 19th Century

The dissertation project focuses upon the foundational period of the correspondent profession and the first boom around 1900. It examines the development of the professional correspondent between the major media event of ‘1848’ and the outbreak of the First World War.

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Nils Bennemann The Knowledge Regime on the Rhine: Hydrographic Knowledge in the Central Commission for Navigation on the Rhine, 1817 - 1880

The dissertation project investigates the negotiation processes and the procedures in dealing with hydrographic knowledge in the CCNR. Case studies are the determination of the length and the joint navigation of the Rhine as well as the standardisation of hydrographic maps from 1817-1880.

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Dennis Gschaider Precaution through research: on the function of research institutions’ architecture, 1950 - 1980

Towards the end of the 19th century, industrial research constituted a form of dealing with the future. Since the openness of science entails the risk of failure, the research laboratory was a structure that was intended to make science plannable for companies.

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Oliver Kann Cartography and Spatial Visualisation during the First World War

The project examines the lines of development of German cartography over the course of the First World War on the basis of the aspects of production and consumption. The main focus is on issues regarding new production structures, new map types and the use of maps.Me

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Marie-Christin Schönstädt Science in Transition. The Role of the German “Wissenschaftsrat” during Reunification

This doctoral project examines the contingency and possible alternative courses of action for the adoption of the West German science system in the former GDR.

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