Great news from Swansea!

May 5, 2011

The senior management at Swansea University have announced that they do not wish to take further action on their restructuring plans for Modern Languages, which would have seen staff numbers in German halved.


AGS President Supports Butex Position Paper

April 28, 2011

The outgoing President of the AGS, Professor Frank Finlay, has signed a position paper on the year abroad which has been sent to Minister of State for Universities and Science, David Willetts. The paper has been drawn up by the British Universities Transatlantic Exchange Association (Butex). The full document can be read by clicking here.

New Weimar Studies Network

March 31, 2011

The Weimar Studies Network (WSN) is an international platform for researchers and academics working on the history of the Weimar Republic. It offers information on recent publications, up-coming events and on-going research projects on the politics, culture and society of the interwar years in Germany. We would like to develop this forum into a permanent platform for scholars working on any aspect of the Weimar Republic. Besides regular postings on new research, publications and conferences, it offers a place for the exchange of ideas, to present current research interests and to draw on the knowledge of colleagues from all over the world. We welcome all contributions, like call for papers, new publications or conferences, as well as specific questions or problems you might have encountered in your research and that you would like to present to the network.The Weimar Studies Network website can be found at you would like to stay updated on the WSN, please subscribe to our Facebook page ( and our Twitter feed (

Good News for Modern Languages at Swansea

March 29, 2011

Swansea’s University Council will not let the University management go ahead with plans to cut Modern Languages staffing by 50%. For further details, see Swansea’s Modern Languages blog.

Briefings from UCML

March 28, 2011

The University Council for Modern Languages has published two new briefings that will be of interests to Germanists in Higher Education in the UK. Firstly, UCML has responded to the government’s proposal for an  English Baccalaureate (click here for the document). Secondly, the Council has produced a briefing document on work and study for the year abroad, focusing particularly on the need to protect year abroad provision from high tuition fees. Click here to read the briefing.


Swansea University Council to Decide on Future of Modern Languages

March 22, 2011

The Executive at Swansea University have decided to proceed with the proposed cuts to Modern Languages and are taking the proposals to the University Council next Monday (28/3), leaving colleagues little time to respond.

Please support colleagues at Swansea by writing to express concern about the proposals to Sir Roger Jones, Pro-Chancellor and Chair of Council, c/o Dr. Martin Lewis, secretary to Council, at .
– by signing the petition:

Any other support, such as letters to the press, would also be welcome.

Here is a briefing paper from Modern Languages at Swansea which outlines the situation from their perspective. Further info can also be found on their blog:

UCML’s response to the Enquiry into the Future of Higher Education

March 21, 2011

UCML has responded to the UK government’s enquiry into the future of Higher Education. You can read the full response by clicking here..

Humanities Matter

November 19, 2010

A campaign and petition have been launched to defend the humanities in UK Higher Education. Further details can be found here:

English Language Assistantships under Threat

November 8, 2010

The British Council’s English Language Assistantship scheme, which has been running for over 100 years, has been suspended for the current year because of the government’s funding cuts. Whether the scheme will recruit next year is uncertain, but concerned AGS members and followers of this blog are urged to write to Minister Michael Gove at the Department for Education to protest:

The Independent has also covered the story:

The Economic Turn: Politics and the Contemporary Novel in Britain and Germany

November 4, 2010

The Swansea Centre for Research into Contemporary German Culture in conjunction with the Department of English invites all interested parties to the following seminars, taking place from next week. They are at Swansea University in Keir Hardie 250 at 4pm.

Each paper in this series examines one novel published over the last decade which engages with the politics of the Blair/Brown years in Britain (1997-2010) or the SPD coalitions in Germany (1998-2009).

10 November

Julian Preece

‘Diagnosing the Problem in Ulrich Peltzer’s Teil der Lösung’ (2007).

1 December

Joanne Leal, (Birkbeck, University of London)

‘The personal is (not) political: locating the contemporary subject in Katharina Hacker’s Die Habenichtse‘   

David Clarke (University of Bath)

Ghosts in the Machine: Kathrin Röggla wir schlafen nicht

 16 February

Daniel Lea (Oxford Brookes)

The Missing and the Lost: The Empty Space of Politics in Gordon Burn’s Born Yesterday

2 March

Martyn Colebrook (Hull)

‘The fact that there are conspiracy theories does not mean that conspiratorial politics do not also exist’: Eoin McNamee, 12:23 – Paris, 31st August 1997 and the politicization of the contemporary British Novel.   

16 March

Sarah Colvin (Institute of German Studies, Birmingham)

The mythos of winter? The post-capitalist landscape and post-terrorist nonviolence in Lukas Hammerstein’s Wo wirst du sein (2010).

(After Easter)

Katy Shaw (Brighton), Violence as Politics, Politics as Violence in David Peace’s GB84