A Conference by the German Historical Institute, Washington, D.C.
and the University at Buffalo (SUNY)
Conveners: Andreas Daum and Simone Lässig
June 3-6, 2004, in Washington, D.C.
Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859), Europe’s last universal scientist and eminent traveler, is one of the outstanding intellectual figures of modern history. Humboldtian ideas were cited, redefined, and applied in many fields of modern culture, including landscape painting and environmental thinking, no less than in the emerging disciplines of botany, ethnology, and historiography. Today, Humboldt’s oeuvre and what has been called Humboldtian Science are attracting new and growing interest. Scholars in several fields are reviewing Humboldt’s inter-disciplinary work, his thinking about human and natural networks, and his cross-cultural and transnational comparisons.
Our conference—marking the bicentennial of Humboldt’s visit to the United States in 1804—will further explore these avenues by inquiring into Humboldt’s specific impact on North American culture, society, and politics, particularly in the United States and Canada. Humboldt initiated numerous personal links and intellectual transfers between North America, Germany, and other European nations. Humboldtian ideas inspired the young societies of the United States and Canada to search for structuring principles as they explored the west and sought a systematic understanding of nature. Humboldt’s ideas and work also played an important role in dealing with such crucial political issues as slavery.
The conveners invite interested scholars to submit proposals for papers that place Humboldt and the impact of Humboldtian thinking in the context of American, Canadian and North Atlantic history. Comparative papers are also invited. Please send a short abstract of 2-3 pages plus a short c.v. of no more than 2 pages, including a list of relevant publications, to the contact below.
The deadline for submissions is January 10, 2004. The conference will take place from June 3 to 6 at the German Historical Institute in Washington, D.C. The organizing institutions are prepared to cover the costs of travel and hotel accommodation.
Professor Andreas Daum
University at Buffalo (SUNY)
570 Park Hall
Buffalo, NY 14260
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