Uni-Tübingen

Sebastian Koch

Doctoral Researcher

Project G04: End of Empire – Re-ordering in Australia, New Zealand and Canada (1960-1980)


Adress:

Keplerstraße 2
72074 Tübingen
Room:167
Phone:07071 29 77339
Mail:sebastian.kochspam prevention@uni-tuebingen.de

 

Curriculum Vitae

  • 2009: Abitur (DPG Book Prize 2009) equivalent to A-levels
  • 2009-2015: Studies of History and German Literature at the University of Tübingen
  • 04/2011-10/2015: Scholarship (Deutschlandstipendium) awarded by the University of Tübingen
  • 02/2011-04/2011: Practical Training at the Documentation Centre of the Memorial Grafeneck e.V.
  • 07/2011-01/2015: Student Assistant at the CRC 923 “Threatened Orders – Societies under Stress”
  • 10/2012-04/2015: Tutor at the Departement for Modern History (Chair: Prof. Dr. Ewald Frie)
  • 10/2012-05/2015: Student Assistant at the Departement for German Medieval Studies (Chair: Prof. Dr. Annette Gerok-Reiter)
  • 10/2015: 1st State Examination (Secondary-School Teacher Training)
  • since 11/2015: Research Assistant at the Collaborative Research Centre “Threatened Order – Societies under Stress”

Research Interests

  • Comparative History of Australia, New Zealand and Canada
  • History of the British Empire in the Age of Decolonization
  • History of Historiography
  • Cultural History
  • Transnational History

Research Project

Working Title: In Search of a New Identity. Re-ordering Culture in Canada, Australia and New Zealand, 1960–1990

Abstract:

The project focuses on the cultural (re-)orientation that became necessary in the former white settler colonies after the End of Empire. Older concepts of identity based on Whiteness and Britishness came under threat from multicultural concepts of society and, over the course of the long 1960s, from indigenous movements. This ‘identity crisis’ (which was often attributed to ‘national inferiority’) made it necessary to reorient national identity politics and led to a realignment among intellectuals, artists, cultural institutions, national symbols, and even holidays in order to be able to articulate their ‘own’ identities independently from the old concept of Britishness. Within this context, it was also necessary to re-negotiate how to view the British history of the settler colonies, because this history no longer represented a reliable point of reference for a successful national narrative. The project is underpinned by the thesis that in times of threatened orders topics that had been suppressed by former narratives of success were exposed and entrenched concepts of identity were softened up so that perspectives that challenged established ‘truths’ could gain more influence than before. That which some actors perceived as a crisis of identity in this context was seen by others – especially formerly marginalized groups such as indigenous peoples – as a chance to highlight injustices, win recognition, and to play their part in the development of ‘new’ identity constructs.

Against this backdrop, the project asks what kinds of ‘new’ identity concepts and strategies were developed by actors in the wake of Britain’s withdrawal from its former white settler colonies Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Furthermore, it is asked how formerly marginalized groups played their part in the development of ‘new’ identity concepts in the postcolonial era.

Publications

  • Der Kampf des Helden gegen den egeslîchen trachen. Zur narrativen Funktion des Topos vom Drachenkampf in vergleichender Perspektive, Göppingen 2016 (Göppinger Arbeiten zur Germanistik 783).

    • Rezensionen dazu:

      • Peter Somogyi, in: Zeitschrift für deutsches Altertum und deutsche Literatur 146.4 (2017), S. 534–538.

      • Vibeke Rützou Petersen, in: Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts 28.2 (2017), S. 319–321.

      • Norbert Voorwinden, in: Amsterdamer Beiträge zur Älteren Germanistik 76 (2016), S. 442-445.

      • Miriam Strieder, Gekommen, um die anderen Helden abzumelden (2016).

  • Biculturalism, Multiculturalism and Indigeneity as a Strategy of Memoria. Canada and Australia defining Themselves in Times of Threat, in: Renate Dürr und Mischa Meier (Hgg.): Knowing and Forgetting in Times of Threat, erscheint im Mohr Siebeck Verlag in der Reihe “Bedrohte Ordnungen”.

 

Conferences and workshops

  • Workshop zusammen mit Maike Hausen und Clara-Maria Seltmann "End of Empire. Re-ordering in Australia, New Zealand and Canada, 1960–1980", Tübingen, 25.–26. February 2016.
  • Tagung zusammen mit Maike Hausen und Clara-Maria Seltmann "End of Empire. The British World after 1945", Tübingen, 10-12 October 2018. Plakat

Lectures

  • Presentation and Discussion of the Concepts 'Decolonization vs. De-Dominionization', Workshop "End of Empire. Re-ordering in Australia, New Zealand and Canada, 1960–1980", Tübingen, 25.–26. Februar 2016.
  • In Search of a New Identity. Re-ordering Culture in the 1960s and 1970s, Workshop "End of Empire. Re-ordering in Australia, New Zealand and Canada, 1960–1980", Tübingen, 25.–26. Februar 2016.
  • Identitätssuche. Zur kulturellen Neuverortung in Australien, Neuseeland und Kanada, 1960-1980. Vortrag im Rahmen der ersten Nachwuchstagung der Gesellschaft für Überseegeschichte 4.–6. August 2016 auf Schloss Schney bei Lichtenfels (Franken-Akademie).
  • "New Zealand can be likened to a flea on an elephant unable to make its presence felt at all." Überlegungen zur Identitätskrise in Neuseeland nach dem Ende des Britischen Empire, Vortrag im Rahmen des Doktorandentages des Seminars für Neuere Geschichte an der Universität Tübingen, 19. Januar 2018.
  • Biculturalism, Multiculturalism and Indigeneity as a Strategy of Memoria. Canada and Australia Defining Themselves in Times of Threatened Orders, CRC’s Conference “What do we still know? – Knowing and Forgetting in Times of Threat”, Tübingen, 28.–30. Juni 2018. Abstract
  • Breaking the ‘Conspiracy of Silence’ after Empire? Biculturalism, Multiculturalism and Indigeneity as a Strategy of Memory Practices in Canada and Australia, Conference "End of Empire. The British World after 1945", Tübingen, 10-12 October 2018.
  • Identitätskrisen nach dem Ende des Britischen Empire. Zur kulturellen (Neu-)Verortung in Kanada, Australien und Aotearoa Neuseeland, Vortrag im Rahmen des Kolloquiums "Geschichtsdidaktik und Public History" (Prof. Dr. Bernd-Stefan Grewe), Universität Tübingen, 20. Mai 2019.