05/27/2014, Conference: “Horizonte der Humboldt-Forschung [Horizons of Humboldt Studies]“, Potsdam

05/27/2014, Conference: "Horizonte der Humboldt-Forschung [Horizons of Humboldt Studies]", Potsdam

05/27/2014, Conference: “Horizonte der Humboldt-Forschung [Horizons of Humboldt Studies]“, Potsdam

1. Potsdamer Alexander von Humboldt-Tag

Conference Poster (PDF)

Conference Program (PDF)

The 1st Potsdam Alexander von Humboldt Day is presented by the Universität Potsdam and is part of the Research Project “Genealogy, Chronology, and Epistemology” (01UO1302B) in the framwork of the joint project “Alexander von Humboldt’s American Travel Diaries” (Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin PK, Universität Potsdam). The conference is supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

Programm (in German)

09:15-09:30 Begrüßung Oliver Günther (Präsident der Universität Potsdam)

09:30–09:45 Einführung Ottmar Ette und Tobias Kraft

09:45–10:45 Eröffnungsvortrag Vera M. Kutzinski (The Martha Rivers Ingram Professor of English Professor of Comparative Literature, Vanderbilt University): „Alexander von Humboldt: Explorer of Brazil“

10:45–11:15 Kaffeepause

11:15–11:45 Jutta Weber (Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin, Stellvertr. Leiterin der Handschriftenabteilung): „Humboldts Reisetagebücher – Zentrum seines Nachlasses“

11:45–12:15 Tobias Kraft (Universität Potsdam, Institut für Romanistik): „Im Angesicht der Berge. Wie Alexander von Humboldt in einen entflammten Krater herabstieg und mit einer neuen Geognosie der Vulkane wieder herauskam” Continue reading

3-year Research Project on Humboldt’s American Travel Diaries announces Openings at the University of Potsdam, Germany

Announcement of Openings

Detail of Julius Schrader's portrait "Alexander von Humboldt", 1859 (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Detail of Julius Schrader’s portrait “Alexander von Humboldt”, 1859 (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

The Chair of French- and Spanish-speaking Literatures (Prof. Dr. Ottmar Ette) at the Institute for Romance Languages and Literatures of the Philosophical Faculty of the University of Potsdam announces 5 openings in the context of a new BMBF project entitled “Alexander von Humboldt’s American Travel diaries: Genealogy, Chronology, and Epistemology.”

The following three-year positions are available for February 1, 2014:

  • 1 Postdoctoral Research Assistantship (full-time, 40 hours/week) [155/2013]
  • 1 Postdoctoral Research Assistantship (half-time, 20 hours/week) [156/2013]
  • 3 Pre-doctoral Research Assistantships (full-time/40 hours/week) [157/2013]

Salaries for all positions are competitive (E 13 and E 14 in the German context).

In the context of this transdisciplinary project (under the direction of Prof. Dr. Ottmar Ette), the following research disciplinary foci are most desirable: literary studies, visual studies, history of science, geography. The expected outcome for each position is either a completed doctoral dissertation or a publishable monograph.

Tasks

  • write a dissertation or monograph in the context of the above project.
  • help organize conferences/workshops about the topic of the BMBF project.
  • assist in preparing scholarly editions and/or collections.
  • collaborate with the project’s partners (Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz) Continue reading

3-year Research Project at Universität Potsdam to follow the purchase of Alexander von Humboldt’s American Travel Diaries

Last wednesday, the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation (Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz) announced in a press release the purchase of Alexander von Humboldt’s American Travel Diaries (for more information on the purchase and the German and international press reactions see avhumboldt.de).

Together with the purchase, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is funding a joint research programm by the Universität Potsdam and the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin – Preußischer Kulturbesitz. Starting in 2014, Prof. Dr. Ottmar Ette (Universität Potsdam) will lead a research group of at least five researchers (doc and postdoc level) to work on the material, cultural, and epistemological significance of Humboldt’s travel diaries, which can be considered the foundation of what Ottmar Ette has coined as Humboldtian Writing”.

Travel Diary VIIbb/c, 410r: Sketch of Plate 51 of Humboldt's "Vues des Cordillères", outline of the Mountain Corazón, the dashed line indicating orographic snow line. In his adjacent note, Humboldt describes the location of the mountain in the surroundings of Quito. © Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin - PK / Fotostelle

Travel Diary VIIbb/c, 410r: Sketch of Plate 51 of Humboldt’s “Vues des Cordillères”, outline of the Mountain Corazón, the dashed line indicating orographic snow line. In his adjacent note, Humboldt describes the location of the mountain in the surroundings of Quito. © Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin – PK / Fotostelle

At the same time, the project includes the complete digitization of both the volumes of Humboldt’s diaries as well as the entire literary estate, currently available in the archives of the Staatsbibliothek. Taken together, both initiatives will provide a new ground for current and future research on the history of European science in the 19th century in general and Alexander von Humboldt Studies in particular.

The purchase of the travel diaries was funded by a consortium of both public and private institutions. The nine leather-bound books will be presented to the public in an official ceremony early 2014.