Graduate Conference

Graduate Student Conference History

The German department's graduate student conference, now in its twentieth year, began in 1993 as one of the first of its kind in the United States. Conceived as an interdisciplinary conference on literature, culture, and history, it is organized entirely by graduate students. The conference is usually held in collaboration with the graduate students of the Corcoran Department of History at UVA, a fact that emphasizes its interdisciplinary orientation.

Our graduate student conference has achieved unprecedented success because of its unique atmosphere of professionalism and collegiality. While it offers graduate and advanced Ph.D. students from the United States, Canada, and Europe an opportunity to present the product of their research in a professional and intellectually stimulating environment, we are most proud of the highly supportive and personal atmosphere the conference provides. Because the primary goal is intellectual exchange, the organizers take great care to create a calm and relaxed atmosphere for first-time and experienced presenters alike. Moreover, the reception after the keynote presentation and the main evening dinner (sponsored entirely by the conference organizers) provide a relaxed atmosphere for additional intellectual and personal exchange. Another contributing factor to the success of the conference is the presence of faculty members from the German and History departments, who through their questions and observations enhance the conference's professionalism.

Recent conference topics include "Chronic Aporias: An Investigation of Beginnings and Endings" (2000), "Verwandlung: Transformation in German History and Literature" (2003), "Transmissions and Omissions: Media in German Literature and History (2005), "Prophetic Discourse from Amos to Zarathustra: On the Uses and Misuses of Prophecy" (2007), "Visions of Sound: The Aural in German Literature and History" (2008) and "Eat, Drink and be Merry: Questions of Consumption and Celebration" (2009).


2014: We’ve been here before”: Manifestations of Repetition in Literature, Art, Music, and Science (site)

2013: Virtues and Vices (site)

2012: Wasted Spaces (site)

2011: Textual Violence in German Contexts

2010: An die Freude: Approaching “happiness” in German contexts (program)

2009: Eat, Drink and be Merry: Questions of Consumption and Celebration (site)

2008: Visions of Sound: The Aural in German Literature and History (site)

2007: Prophetic Discourse from Amos to Zarathustra: on the Uses and Misuses of Prophecy

2006: Deviant Bodies

2005: Transmissions and Omissions: Media in German Literature and History

2004: Death and Seduction

2003: Verwandlung: Transformation in German History and Literature

2002: Confinement

2001: Desire

2000: Chronic Aporias: An Investigation of Beginnings and Endings

1999: Interdisciplinary German Studies

1998: Crossing Borders