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

Letters of Support for Anne Simon

November 1, 2010

Over 100 international scholars have sent letters of support for Dr Anne Simon, whose has been singled out for redunancy at the University of Bristol. The letters, which can be seen at Henrike Laehnemann’s blog  , demonstrate Dr Simon’s high standing among Medievalists both in the UK and beyond.

Medieval Studies under Threat in Bristol University’s German Department

October 29, 2010

Dr Anne Simon, an expert on the literature, art and culture of late-mediaeval Germany, is facing redundancy as part of Bristol University’s plan to scale back provision in their School of Modern Languages. A highly respected scholar and popular teacher, Dr Simon is threatened with redundancy apparently without substantial consultation.

The University’s plan also includes the following measures for other languages: French will have reduced from 14 to 9 over 5 years; Italian used to be 6 and is  now 5; Russian/Czech is 5 and HIPLA (Spanish and Portuguese) will lose one member of staff to redundancy in a process that is ongoing.

Protests can be directed to the Dean of the Faculty of Arts:
Dean of the Faculty of Arts
3/5 Woodland Road

AGS Conference 2011

September 23, 2010

Association for German Studies in Great Britain and Ireland

The seventy-fourth conference of the Association will take place on 13-15 April 2011 at:-

Queen Mary University


The next conference of the Association for German Studies in Great Britain and Ireland will take place at the Queen Mary University London, 13-15 April 2011. The lead panel for the conference will be ‘London in German Culture – German Language Culture in London’, with further panels on Literary and Cultural Theory, Language Learning and Teaching, History and Remembrance, Linguistics, Gender, Medieval and Early Modern Studies, Eighteenth-Century Studies, Nineteenth-Century Studies and Twentieth-Century and Contemporary Studies.

If you are interested in contributing a paper to any of these panels, please send your proposal directly to the e-mail address of the conveners listed below. If you would like to propose a panel or if you would like to offer a paper that does not fall within the remit of any of the listed panels, please contact the Conference Secretary Dr Melani Schröter ( Proposals for papers should be 150-200 words, panel outlines 50-100 words.

Proposals for papers should reach the relevant conveners by 30 November 2010. Any proposals for additional panels should reach Melani Schröter by 31 October 2009.

For the full CFP, please go to

New AGS Website

September 23, 2010

The website for AGS has now moved to, replacing the earlier site at

Please change your favourites to take account of the change.

Also, the on-line list of Germanists has now been discontinued.

Feel free to e-mail comments on the new site to David Clarke.