Imre Kertész Kolleg Jena


The Kolleg regularly organizes conferences and workshops. Our focal point of the year is the Annual Conference, usually held in Jena, which assembles a large group of international scholars. Smaller workshops and scholarly conferences organised jointly with partner institutions are held both in Jena and elsewhere. As a matter of course, the Kolleg and its community are present at international gatherings such as ASEEES conventions or the Deutsche Historikertag.

Program Archive

Conferences 14. - 15. June 2018

Annual Conference 2018

Revolution from Within. Experts, Managers and Technocrats in the Long Transformation of 1989

teaser annual conference 2018

Jena, 14 - 15 June, 2018

"The expression of truth is losing its ethical impact and becoming no more than a historical fact that arouses interest but not enthusiasm. And the experts are better informed and are able to quote facts more accurately than the dissidents" wrote Jiřina Šiklová, a Czech dissident sociologist, in January 1990. Already a few months earlier she had predicted that it would be the professionals and experts from the „grey zone“ between official Party structures and dissident...

Conferences 23. - 25. November 2016

Workshop: Heritage Studies and Socialism: Transnational Perspectives on Heritage in Eastern and Central Europe

Location: GCSC, Alter Steinbacher Weg 38, 35392 Giessen

organised by Dr Eszter Gantner, Corinne Geering M.A., Dr Paul Vickers

Herder Institute for Historical Research on East Central Europe – Institute of the Leibniz Association, Marburg
International Graduate Centre for the Study of Culture (GCSC), Justus Liebig University Giessen
Imre Kertész Kolleg, Friedrich Schiller University Jena
Supported by Leibniz Research Alliance “Historical Authenticity”

In the last decade, heritage studies have emerged as a field of cross-disciplinary research covering the topics including the built environment, museums and collections,...

Conferences 06. - 08. October 2016

The Allure of Totalitarianism. The Roots, Meanings, and Political Cycles of a Concept in Central and Eastern Europe

International Conference and Workshop Jena, 6–8 October 2016

venue: “Internationales Centrum ‚Haus auf der Mauer‘“, lecture room, Johannisplatz 26, Jena

The term ‘totalitarianism’ has experienced a remarkable comeback in political, historical, and social science discourses of the last half century. Having served as a key concept in the dissident critique of state socialist regimes in Central and Eastern Europe during the 1970s and 1980s, the term took on new life after 1989, losing its associations with the opposition and becoming widespread in the media...

Conferences 29. - 30. June 2016

"Denkmalschutz im Staatssozialismus"

venue: Castle Weesenstein, Saxony

Veranstalter: Imre Kertész Kolleg, Stiftung Ettersberg, Staatliche Schlösser, Burgen und Gärten Sachsen gGmbH, Stiftung Thüringer Schlösser und Gärten

Das Imre Kertész Kolleg Jena, die Stiftung Ettersberg, die Staatliche Schlösser, Burgen und Gärten Sachsen gGmbH und die Stiftung Thüringer Schlösser und Gärten führen vom 29. Juni bis zum 30. Juni 2016 eine gemeinsame Tagung durch, die erstmals Grundlagen der Geschichte des Denkmalschutzes und des Umgangs mit historischen Baudenkmälern im...

Conferences 09. - 10. June 2016

Annual Conference 2016

People(s) on the Move. Refugees and Immigration Regimes in Central and Eastern Europe During the 20th Century

June 9-10, 2016, Rosensäle of the Friedrich Schiller University Jena

At the end of the 20th century, societies in Central and Eastern Europe tend to conceive of themselves as ethnically homogeneous and ethnic diversity to be addressed as a question of national minorities. Whereas historical research has addressed the issues of forced migration, overseas emigration and political exile, the experiences of immigration and of coping with large numbers of refugees and its potential challenge to...

Conferences 27. - 28. May 2016

Workshop: Transforming the Museum. An Exploration

During the last decades, the role of the museum has changed substantially. Former displays of objects and pictures are challenged by alternative ways of representing and staging the past.

The use of media and visitor participation challenges the educational aspect that museums once offered. Conveying historical knowledge and stimulating a cognitive process of perception are being replaced by a more emotional museum experience: instead of dealing with historical facts, museums have become 'historical theme parks'. The central aim of the workshop is to discuss these developments on its historical backgrounds and develop further perspectives on roles and functions/ways of...

Conferences 11. - 12. June 2015

Annual Conference 2015

Into the Open. 1990 – The First Year of Transition

June 11-12 2015, Rosensäle of the Friedrich Schiller University Jena

The conference aims to explore the manifold aspects and reactions to a world in rapid transition. Case studies from the fields of politics, economics, intellectual currents and everyday life will discuss the attempts to cope with unexpected challenges and to shape events. Rather than continuing the ongoing debate on why communism failed and rather than taking the ensuing attempts at democracy for granted, the conference aims...

Conferences 12. - 13. June 2014

Annual Conference 2014

State Repression in Socialist Central and Eastern Europe. Comparative Approaches

June 12-13, 2014, University of Warsaw and Dom Spotkań z Historią, Warsaw

The conference assembles international experts and discusses forms of political repression, oppression and surveillance in the countries of the former Warsaw Pact. The focus is on comparing local and systemic features of state repression, its dimensions and intensity across Central and Eastern Europe and on state repression as social practice. In cooperation with the Historical Institute of Warsaw University and the...

Conferences 13. - 15. June 2013

Annual Conference 2013

Catastrophe and Utopia Central and Eastern European Intellectual Horizons 1933 to 1958

June 13-15, 2013 in Budapest

The conference Catastrophe and Utopia will study the historical experiences, intellectual agendas, sustained reflections and utopian visions of Central and Eastern European intellectuals in the years between 1933 and 1958. Central and Eastern Europe was the central stage of the most catastrophic events during this quarter of a century, experiencing the rise and spread of Nazism, the Second World War and the Holocaust as well as the establishment of Stalinist...

Conferences 08. - 09. July 2011

Opening conference 2011

Europe’s East in the 20th Century. Cultural-historical Challenges for the Present

July 08-09, 2011 at the Rosensäel of the Friedrich Schiller University Jena

The Imre Kertész Kolleg Jena held its first official conference on 08 & 09 July, 2011.Adam Michnik was the keynote speaker, introducing the public to the topic with his speech on the heritage of dictatorships. On the second day Jiří Menzel opened the conference with a presentation on East Central European filmmaking with special emphasis on ironic approaches towards the 20th century.