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Berlin the City as Media: Space Memory and the Urban Landscape

Berlin, Germany

Term Offered: 
Berlin interior building
Approximate Dates of Instruction: 
September 28, 2011 to December 9, 2011
Application Deadline: 
April 15, 2011

Sponsored by: The Comparative History of Ideas & The Department of History

In the course of less than a century Berlin has been the site of catastrophic destruction, violent and tragic division, intensive rebuilding, and vehement debates over the recovery of historical memory and the memorialization of decisive moments of the past. A decade ago it was Europe’s largest construction site. What remains? Have the layers of history exposed by the fall of the Berlin Wall been obscured by the recreation of Berlin as the capital of the new united Germany and as a major cultural center of post Cold War Europe? What historical memories can still be read in the urban landscape? How has the process of creative reconstruction been used to both forget and remember previous visual mappings and historical texts built into the stones and spaces of the urban landscape? The program will approach the urban environment as a dynamic, mediatic container that carries a plethora of meanings and messages. Our aim will be to decode and reconstruct some of these messages and uncover the innumerable layers of memory that remain present and alive in the city’s landscape.

  • CHID 471 The City as Media Laboratory and Visual Ethnographic Space (5 credits)
  • HSTEU 407 The City as Historical Text (5 credits)
  • CHID 499 Independent Project (5 credits)

Note: We recommend that you check with your academic advisor to see how these courses can count toward your departmental requirements.

Total Program Fees: 

The program fee TBD, and projected at $4,800. The program fee will cover instruction costs, housing, a Berlin transit pass, registration at the Humboldt University, and transportation for required field trips. The program fee does not cover: $250 IPE fee, airfare, meals, insurance or personal travel and expenses.

Make sure to read our Fees, Financing, and Withdrawal page for information on paying for your trip.