The Institute for German Cultural Studies (IGCS) is a research-oriented initiative designed both to recognize extraordinary cross-disciplinary strengths in the study of German culture at Cornell University and to foster lively scholarly exchange pertaining to the interdisciplinary study of German intellectual life from the medieval era to the present. Events ranging from large conferences, bi-weekly colloquia, focal workshops, special lectures, a faculty summer seminar co-sponsored by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and an artist-in-residence program create a vibrant intellectual forum for deepening our understanding of German culture in its own right and in its broad significance for critical inquiry throughout the humanities and social sciences. Participants include scholars, students, teachers and community members engaged in diverse fields throughout the humanities and social sciences, and they additionally reflect international partnerships with selected universities in Germany. Transnational influences on German culture in earlier historical periods and our current age of globalization increasingly inform our discussions as well.
The IGCS regularly brings together thoughtful innovators and diverse audiences to advance the critical enterprise of interdisciplinary German Studies and to consider how knowledge of German-speaking cultures can enhance our grasp of cultural formations, intellectual history, literary studies, visual studies and media arts, and political constellations. Devoted in part to mentoring graduate students in their professional development, the IGCS additionally provides undergraduate students with a rich palette of activities and opportunities to expand their intellectual horizons and international perspectives through the multi-faceted study of German culture. The Institute for German Cultural Studies is above all a lively venue for serious, shared and interdisciplinary reflection on what it means to study German intellectual and cultural life.