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 Student Conferences 

With student conferences and student workshops, the Institute for American Studies is offering new teaching formats. Besides highlighting the students dedication to and engagement with their scholarly interests, these new formats seek to teach key professional skills in a thematic context. Student conferences underscore how area expertise, international skills, and global reach (in terms of acquired knowledge and abilities) can be integrated into a dynamic and unique program of study to encourage personal and professional advancement.

Below we will be including examples of our MA conferences, BA conferences, and student workshops. These will become a regular part of the American Studies programs as the BA and MA become fully integrated into the teaching of the Institute. There are two Professional Skills Modules (Schlüsselqualifikationsmodule), one for the BA and one for the MA, that specifically have Student Conferences as a central part of the learning experience.

 

MA Conferences:

MA-Level Graduate Student Conference 2016

"Urban America"
American Studies Leipzig, Germany
Annual MA-Level Graduate Student Conference
Leipzig, April 2, 2016

Not only can space be seen as an entity or as a point on a map but it can also be turned into a place whenever an individual or a group assigns meaning to it. Due to its interdisciplinary approach, American Studies is an ideal framework to examine the construction, mediation, and representation of urban spaces as places in the US. From topics such as gentrification and the development of ethnic neighborhoods to the representation of cities and urban spaces in literature and culture—in TV series (Mad MenTreme) or novels (Theodore Dreiser’s Sister Carrie, Teju Cole’s Open City)—urban spaces and places have gained relevance and recognition in the academic world and thus require continued inquiry

With the Fifth American Studies Leipzig Graduate Conference “Urban America: Mediating City Space as Place,” we seek to investigate the cultural, social, and political production of spatial realms and places in an interdisciplinary framework. As a platform to discuss the complexity and representations of urban spaces and places, our conference invites all interested graduate students and professionals in the field of urban research. Within this unique forum, participants will have a chance to present their work to an international audience, allowing for excellent networking opportunities.

For further information, please refer to the conference page.

You can also follow this conference on Facebook.

MA-Level Graduate Student Conference 2014

"Death and Dying in American Culture"

American Studies Leipzig, Germany
Annual MA-Level Graduate Student Conference
Leipzig, 21-22 March 2014

The Leipzig MA-level graduate student conference “Death and Dying in American Culture,” seeks to explore diverse representations and conceptions of death as well as investigate social, cultural, and political perspectives on the topic. In recent years, popular TV series such as CSI, Bones, Dexter, and Game of Thrones have exposed viewers to high numbers of dead bodies per episode, yet in the news media, it remains largely taboo to depict the death and dying of Americans. From fallen soldiers to shooting victims, news media reduce the dead to symbolic representations in order to avoid dealing with the finality and omnipresence of death. However, in current scholarly discourse, books such as Drop Dead Gorgeous: Representations of Corpses in American TV Shows (2011) by Tina Weber, and Death, American Style: A Cultural History of Dying in America (2013) by Lawrence R. Samuel investigate death and dying from a sociological and cultural perspective. As American demographics shift toward an older population, social and political institutions are also increasingly forced to deal with death and dying. The prevalence of “Death and Dying in American Culture,” and society’s reluctance to confront it is a phenomenon that is fascinating and provides a particularly fertile subject for discussion.
(Please click here to read more.)
 

MA-Level Graduate Student Conference 2012

"Global Games, Global Goals: Locating America in the Cultural, Social, and Political Realms of Sport"

American Studies Leipzig, Germany
Annual MA-Level Graduate Student Conference
Leipzig, 30-31 March 2012

The MA-level graduate conference “Global Games, Global Goals: Locating America in the Cultural, Social, and Political Realms of Sports” will explore different notions of sports in a forum integrating students and professionals. Since sports touches upon many aspects of life such as politics, media, popular culture, history, and health, it offers a myriad of possible research foci. In fact, American sports and sport lifestyle(s) influence cultures around the world while simultaneously being subject to influences from other cultures as well. The study of sports within an American context is thus not limited to the national level: Sports organizations, sports gear enterprises, and athletes of all possible types operate internationally, making the topic of sports highly relevant on a global scale. With the third annual American Studies Leipzig MA-level graduate conference, “Global Games, Global Goals,” we seek to investigate the cultural, social, and political realms of sports in an interdisciplinary framework. (Please click here to read more.)

 

MA-Level Graduate Student Conference 2011

"American Pornographies: Consumerism, Sensationalism, and Voyeurism in a Global Context"

American Studies Leipzig, Germany
Annual MA-Level Graduate Student Conference
Leipzig, 1-2 April 2011

The MA-level graduate conference “American Pornographies: Consumerism, Sensationalism, and Voyeurism in a Global Context” will investigate different notions of ‘pornography’ on literal and broader levels. Although conventionally associated with sexuality alone, ‘pornography’ is most productively understood more broadly as the often sensationalist commodification of individual acts and features. Thus, the previously understudied subject of pornography brings new impulses to the study of consumerism, particularly in light of the rising influence of globalization and the Internet.(Please click here to read more.)

 

MA-Level Graduate Student Conference 2010

"Between Global Village and Global Dump: Placing America in a Transnational World"

American Studies Leipzig, Germany
First Annual MA-Level Graduate Student Conference
Leipzig, 22-23 March 2010

The MA-level graduate student conference "Between Global Village and Global Dump: Placing America in a Transnational World" will explore the role of the two American continents in a global setting. Together we will investigate the dynamics between common labels such as 'global village' and 'global dump' and where to locate the Americas in this continuum. We seek to examine different perspectives of a globalized world and discuss the chances it offers as well as the challenges it poses. (Please click here to read more.)
 

 

BA Conferences:

Undergraduate Symposium 2014

"Political Correctness"

February 07, 2014, at 3 pm
Felix Klein Hörsaal, Paulinum

The 2014 Undergraduate Symposium "Political Correctness" presented a wide range of controversial topics that concern today’s America in an age in which PC has become part of not just every day vocabulary, but also of critical thinking, politics, and social interaction.
Please click here to read more.

 

 

Undergraduate Symposium 2013

"American Controversies"

February 01, 2013, at 2 pm
Kulturcafé Plan B

The 2013 Undergraduate Symposium "American Controversies" presented a wide range of controversial topics that concern today’s America and was aimed at fostering the understanding of the complexities of American politics, culture, and literature.

Please click here to read more.

 


Undergraduate Symposium 2012

"Debate America"

February 3, 2012, at 2pm
Kulturcafé Plan B

At the third American Studies Leipzig Undergraduate Symposium with the title “Debate America,” the BA Class of 2009 will present and discuss their research outcome of their project module. The debates cover a wide range of topics, from different perspectives on the cultural and societal Zeitgeist, to a closer look on the struggles of African Americans in the modern America, to critical and analytical views on modern literature and film. Please click here to read more.

 

 

Undergraduate Symposium 2011

"America’s Grey Zones and Rays of Light"

February 4, 2011 at 2pm. Deutsches Literaturinstitut.

For the second year in a row the 3rd-year BA students are proud to present their work done in the Project Module during this year’s Undergraduate Symposium. The event will present three different projects centering around the topics of Illegal Immigration, U.S. Enemy Images, and Creative Economy. The students are going to give oral presentations on their work, each followed by a discussion where the audience is asked to pose remaining questions.(Please click here to read more.)
 


Undergraduate Symposium 2010

"American Pie"

February 11, 2010 at 2 pm. Villa Tillmanns.

For the first time the 3rd year BA students majoring in American Studies host the Undergraduate Symposium – a one-day event showcasing a eight research projects accomplished by the students. In the context of a project module the students investigated America-based issues of their interest. Now they share their results in form of oral presentations at the Symposium, each taking about 15 minutes. By dicussing diverse aspects of the US-culture, the lectures provide a deep insight into the American cultural phenomenon called the "American Pie." The thematical priorities are: Popular culture – Myth and Reality – Media. (Please click here to read more.)
 

First Student Workshop

"The Historical Imagination"
July 15-17, 2005. Hütten, Thuringia

A small group of advanced students researched, presented, and discussed in a peer environment projects in American history and literature. The two-day workshop concluded a seminar on American historical fiction taught both in Leipzig and at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg. Participants presented projects on the representation of colonial history and of slavery in 19th and 20th century American novels, such as James F. Cooper's The Last of the Mohicans, Ishmael Reed's Flight to Canada, and Octovia Butler's Kindred.

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