CFP: GSA-Panels 2023: Dresden Since 1949, Montreal (01.03.2023)

Sonja Klocke Discussion

Open Call for Papers sponsored by the GSA Interdisciplinary GDR and German Socialisms Network for the 47th Annual Conference of the German Studies Association, Montreal, QC, October 5-8, 2023.  

Deadline: March 1, 2023 


Dresden Since 1949 

The beautiful (rebuilt) Baroque city of Dresden is a beloved tourist destination in Eastern Germany, known as much for its beautiful architecture and amazing art collections—leading to its nickname of “Florence on the Elbe”—as for its history of having been almost completely destroyed by Allied bombers toward the end of World War II. During the Cold War, Dresden was a major center for contemporary art with the Dresden Art Academy and as host to the national Art Exhibition of the GDR that took place every four to five years. It was a center for electronics and computers as well as home to a robust ecological movement. It also played a pivotal, if largely overlooked role in the demonstrations that led to the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. More recently, Dresden has been the focus of media attention as a center for the right-wing agitations of Pegida and the AfD as well as—and perhaps in part because of—its elision of cultural accomplishments from the Cold War era. It also made headlines for the spectacular Green Vault heist in 2019 in which more than $110 million worth of jewels were stolen, the ill-fated attempt to buy them back from thieves, and the ultimate return of many of the items in December 2022.

The "GDR and German Socialisms Network" is calling for papers that focus on the city of Dresden since 1949 writ large with the intent of casting light on a city that, despite its name recognition, is relatively absent in English-language scholarship, especially in comparison to other eastern cities like Berlin and Leipzig. We seek to put together 2-4 panels on a range of topics that use Dresden as a jumping off point for looking at topics including (but not limited to) visual culture, film, literature, music, theater, ecology, history, and politics in East Germany since 1949. 

Please submit a 200 to 250-word abstract and a short CV (no more than 2 pages) to April Eisman ( and Sonja Klocke ( by March 1, 2023.  

The GDR and GERMAN SOCIALISMS NETWORK is a vehicle for connecting the diversity of current scholarship on the GDR with a broader academic base that explores the impact and meanings of Socialism in all of its manifestations, from its beginnings in the 19th century to the present. Encouraging both speculative and empirical methodologies, the Network seeks to bring together scholars operating in all fields and time periods for a productive exchange that questions the world in which we live and the political machinations that created it.