For many students, the term ‘Archive’ often evokes intimidation and insecurity if not indifference. How does one approach an archive? How does one look for a topic in an archive? This seminar is a beginner’s course into historical methods and conducting research in archives- training that can be fundamental for doing research in area studies. The case study in focus is India. We will search traces of India in the archive of Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient in Berlin.
The seminar has the following axes:
- Learning how to do systematic searches in archives (Databases, catalogues etc.)
- How to work with archival sources?
- Systematic search and collection of sources on India in a selected archive in Berlin.
Through our research in this archive we will uncover elements of the history of India-Germany entanglements, which is a highly rich field offering students new learning possibilities.
The aim is to work intensely with primary sources on India and participate in contributing to a database of such sources. It will thus help in acquiring concrete methodological tools.
The Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO) was established in 1996. Its predecessor institution was the Forschungsschwerpunkt Moderner Orient which emerged in 1992 from the Institute for Universal History (Institut für Allgemeine Geschichte) of the Academy of Sciences of the GDR. The ZMO library contains besides literature on historical, ethnological and political themes regarding the Middle East, Asia and Africa, also a significant collection of personal papers. Among them are personal collections by eminent East German scholars who had worked on South Asia: Horst Krüger (1920-1989), Joachim Heidrich (1930-2004) and Petra Heidrich (1940-2006). They had started their collections partly in the 1960s. Thus, the seminar also attempts to discuss knowledge production during the Cold war.
In the 4 intensive sessions (blocks), we will meet in the scenic area of Nikolassee where the archive is located and make learning historical methods a collective, enjoyable exercise.
LOCATION of the course:
Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient, Kirchweg 33, Berlin 14129
The seminar will take place where the archive is located.
*PLEASE NOTE: FIRST SESSION TAKES PLACE ON 06.11.
Following dates: 10.11., 17.11., 20.11.