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European Cultural History


The new subject “European Cultural History” owes its genesis to the current cultural turn within the humanitarian disciplines. In the centre of our considerations is the human being as “homo culturalis”. European Cultural History focuses on what has been aptly described by Max Weber as “culture being a finite section of the futile eternity of world affairs which mankind has endowed with sense and significance. Accordingly, the cognitive interest pursued by this subject deals with processes of individual and collective endowment of various political, economical, social, aesthetical or religious fields with meaning, with such processes manifesting themselves in text documents, pictures and objects. The European perspective leads to a particular interest in inter-cultural transfer processes, which had and still have an impact on the cultures of Europe, and further in related historical constructions of Europe as an autonomous cultural region.

This subject as represented by the research and teaching activities at Augsburg centres on the history of modern European culture (since 1500 to date). It deals, for example, with the genesis, the communication and reception of political, economic or religious concepts in the European region, and further with institutions and media representing cultural actions or with interactive processes between elite or popular cultures. Of great significance is the critical reflexion on the cultural-scientific formation of theories and methodology which, by way of examinations, links itself with the history of knowledge or of science.

Thus, studying European Cultural History at Augsburg will open up a broad disciplinary field. Students are welcome to take advantage of numerous interesting opportunities and perspectives offered by the Chair due to its close connection with academic institutions of Augsburg University, in particular the Institute of European Cultural History.