This talk is the closing keynote of the 2021 BAA International Conference on "Rethinking Solidarity".

The keynote speech will be streamed live. Link to follow soon.

Aleida Assmann: "Repairing the Past: Divided Narratives and National Solidarity"

Closing Keynote of the 20th BAA International Conference / Via live stream / Link to follow soon.


The keynote speech will be streamed live. Link to follow soon.


Closing Keynote of this year's international Bavarian American Academy (BAA) Conference on "Rethinking Solidarity."


Nations are torn apart today not only through material and social inequality or identity politics but also through divided narratives that coexist independently in the same territory. In order to overcome the division and fragmentation in the society and to mobilize civic strength for common projects it is important to address the divided past and to bring conflicting narratives into a mutually acknowledged relationship.



Aleida Assmann studied English Literature and Egyptology at the universities Heidelberg and Tuebingen. From 1993-2014, she held the chair of English Literature and Literary Theory at the University of Konstanz, Germany. She taught as a guest professor at international universities (Rice University, Princeton, Yale, Chicago or Vienna).


Main areas of her research are history of media, history and theory of reading, cultural memory, with special emphasis on Holocaust and trauma. The Max Planck Research Award allowed her to establish a research group on ‘memory and history’ (2009-2015). Together with her husband Jan Assmann, she received the Peace Price of the German Book Trade in 2018. Currently, she is directing a research group at the university of Konstanz on the topic ‘Civic Strength’.


Recent Publications in English:

Memory in a Global Age. Discourses, Practices and Trajectories (ed. with Sebastian Conrad, 2010),

Cultural Memory and Western Civilization: Functions, Media, Archives (2012),

Memory and Political Change (ed. with Linda Shortt, 2012),

Introduction to Cultural Studies: Topics, Concepts, Issues (2012).

Shadows of Trauma. Memory and the Politics of Postwar Identity (2016).

Is the Time Out of Joint? On the Rise and Fall of the Modern Time Regime (2020).



Organizer: Bavarian American Academy

Contact: Dr. Margaretha Schweiger-Wilhelm

(Photo: Aleida Assmann © Aleida Assmann)


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