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Ergebnisanzeige "NeMLA 2016: The Body and Mind Conflict in Current German Culture"
RessourcentypCall for Papers
TitelNeMLA 2016: The Body and Mind Conflict in Current German Culture
BeschreibungBody and Mind Conflict in Current German Culture

In ”Die Wahrheit der technischen Welt” (2013) the German media philosopher Friedrich Kittler claims that echoes, doppelganger-figures, voices of the unconscious etc. make the reader/spectator suppress his own and the text’s “physical” conditions. When we read, watch a movie, or write, we do not only forget the letters, ink, and paper, we also abandon our body in order to create narratives of the world and ourselves. “Der Buchstabe wurde übersprungen, das Buch vergessen, bis irgendwo zwischen den Zeilen eine Halluzination erschien – das reine Signifikat der Druckzeichen.” According to Kittler the Geist can only come into existence once its media are overcome. Further, the mind-body-dichotomy is historically connected with the discourses of surface vs. depth and high vs. low. The narrative of depth does not only have a deep impact on every day language and culture. One example is that we should get to know another person’s character rather than focus on the superficial appearance. It seems to be ontologically linked with cultural discourses. In negative reviews of contem-porary German literature or film, for instance, one often reads that the charac-ters lack depth. Instead they are perceived as one-dimensional, and the story as not complex enough, which refers back to the dualism superficial vs. deep. These discourses seem to have a crucial function for the German self-understanding and are connected with identity constructions.
In Frauke Finsterwalder’s film “Finsterworld”, which tries to describe Germanness, a pedicurist develops a foot fetish, a cop seeks for physical interaction dressed as a furry, and a history teacher tries to make his students connect with a disembodied notion of the German guilt. The film criticizes the modern socie-ty’s twisted or detached relation between body and mind. Our panel seeks to out-line narratives within this vital body-mind-dichotomy in current German culture, and discuss possible links to German identity narratives.

Questions and topics the presentations may include, but are not limited to, are the following:
What function do body and mind have in current German literature, film and phi-losophy? How are they narrated and ultimately evaluated? How do the after-maths of modernity, e.g. loss of identity and of a holistic worldview still influence current German culture? Are there parallels or differences between German and American identity narratives? How does the German preference of the mind over the body manifest itself in culture? Why is it that the German metaphysical drive is still so substantial to current cultural discourses?

Please submit proposals (up to 300 words) on the NeMLA website:

Deadline for submissions is September 27, 2015.

Chair: Stefan Bronner (University of Pittsburgh)
Chair: Yvonne Franke (Midwestern State University

For questions email to:
Stefan Bronner ( and Yvonne Franke (

Quelle der BeschreibungInformation des Anbieters
PersonName: Bronner, Stefan 
Funktion: Chair 
KontaktdatenName/Institution: University of Pittsburgh 
Postleitzahl: 15260 
Stadt: Pittsburgh 
Telefon: 017656563481 
LandVereinigte Staaten von Amerika
SchlüsselbegriffeSprache und Gesellschaft (Diskursanalyse, Ethnographie, Sprachkritik, Sprachplanung, Sprachpolitik); Literatur nach 1945
Zusätzliches SuchwortGegenwartsliteratur
Klassifikation01.00.00 Allgemeine deutsche Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaft > 01.07.00 Germanistik im Ausland
Ediert von  H-Germanistik
Ein Angebot vonGermanistik im Netz
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