German Literature & Culture

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Accepts undergraduate submissions

Note: Although there is a specific panel on Intersectional German Studies proposed below, all presenters are encouraged to consider their work in intersectional ways as much as they can. We also encourage papers that deal with German Studies topics, theories, and themes, but do not adhere to the topics proposed below.

I. Intersectional German Studies? Or German Studies and Intersectionality

What would it take for German Studies, by definition, to be intersectional, that is, as an essential component of the field, in a way that is much stronger than ever before? What does such a shift in the field mean for German Studies, what can it help German Studies achieve on the societal level? Why is this shift essential to the field? Topics that deal with any subject of German Studies from an intersectional viewpoint are the goal of this panel, but all presenters in German are asked to consider incorporating intersectionality in their work as much as possible. Any paper on this topic could easily link to IV. Below.

II. German Politics and Social Policies: Bundestag election and social policy; Afghanistan, Germany and Europe’s international presence; a German environmental revolution?; Covid and Germany society?

The extreme flooding in two German states, and other extreme weather events, have massively brought environmental issues to the fore, despite the ongoing battle with the Covid pandemic. How, and why might Germany lead an environmental ‘revolution.’ At the same time, the way Germany participated in the withdrawal from Afghanistan, in addition to the human tragedies it will likely entail, is set to impact Germany’s role in future engagement, and the role of Europe. What is the impact of September federal elections to the Bundestag for social politics, for dealing with the housing crisis, for instance, and finally, of course, what are the markers of Covid in Germany, either from the unwillingness to mandate vaccination, or debates about the 3 Gs (in English, those vaccinated, recovered from Covid, or tested for Covid; i.e. Geimpfte, Genesene, Getestete) or 2 Gs mean to German society’s development, that is similar, or different to other nations?  

III. German Film and Video Culture

What is the direction, the model for German films as cultural products? What do German films translate into abroad, and where? What are the tropes of German film in North America? What are the issues in German sub-genres in film? Does Weimar cinema again reign supreme, or has video and film, fiction and manga re-territorialized or de-territorialized Weimar? How is Netflix reshaping German cinema and cultural production?

IV. Acceptance, Assimilation, Racism in Germany

How is Germany dealing with racism? How is it different or similar to other jurisdictions? Does it propose acceptance or assimilation, or something else? Is Germany behind the times because it is still dealing with “gendern”, that is, using language to make all gender identities visible (Duden, online). How does the past still mark German attitudes and policies? What do changes in names, to products for instance, or Berlin’s removal of the word “schwarzfahren” (from the Yiddish “shvarts” meaning “poverty” or “poor”) for the BVB mean for Germany’s attention to racism? What is the impact of Germany’s fight against anti-semitism upon its ability to tackle or approach to other forms of racism, such as against POC or BIPOC? And what does Green politician Tessa Ganserer’s likely election mean for trans(gender) culture in Germany and the fight against Germany’s oft-criticized transgender law? 

V. German Museum Culture and Restitution

From the recent controversy about the Humboldt Forum’s Benin-Bronzen, to efforts by various museums to deal with “Raubkunst” (Mannheim, Frankfurt, to name just some of the places where some of the earliest efforts were made), to the recent opening of the Max Stern exhibit at Dusseldorf’s Stadtmuseum despite four international partners in Canada and Israel having abandoned the project three years earlier, when then mayor Thomas Geisel cancelled the exhibit three years earlier without consultation, and the various restitution efforts, are museums in Germany now, to varying degrees, truly confronting their pasts? What is the good, the bad, and the ugly of such cultural shifts, and how does the Germany history of dealing with the Shoah impact the present-day response of German museums?

Note: Papers not focused on these topics, but which are dealing with other areas or aspects of German Literature and Culture (particularly film and popular culture), are also welcome for submission.

Submission information: Please submit your 200-300 word abstract/proposal through the PCA database, 

Inquiries? If you should have any inquiries or further questions about the German Literature and Culture Area at the PCA/ACA national conference, please contact:
Thinking of presenting/attending, and wanting to be on an email list? Send your email to claude.desmarais@ubc.ca, and state the sort of updates you would like (i.e. Reminders [when database opens, a month and two weeks before the deadline, etc.); Updates on Finalized Panels; Meetings Updates [other German Studies conferences; meetings at the conference outside of panels]; Future PCA/ACA cfps). A full list of conference dates is provided below.

Claude Desmarais

German Literature and Culture Area Chair





2022 Conference Dates and Deadlines

01Aug-21 2022 Conference Information Available on Website
01-Sept-21 Submissions Open 
01-Oct-21 Early Bird Registration Begins
15-Nov-21 Deadline for Paper Proposals and Grant Applications
16-Dec-21 Early Bird Registration Ends; Regular Registration Begins
01-Jan-22 Regular Registration Ends
02-Jan-22 Preliminary Schedule Available
01-Feb-22 Registration for Presenters End; Those Not Registered by the Date Will be Dropped From the Program
01-Apr-22 Online Non-presenter Registration Ends
April 13-16, 2022

PCA Conference in Seattle, WA


All presenters must be current, paid members of the PCA and registered for the conference. Non-presenters who attend the full conference must also pay membership fees.

To attend the National Conference, members must pay the membership fee and the registration fee.   

The last day for all refunds is February 15, 2022. No refund requests will be honored after this date. Membership fees are non-refundable and non-transferable.


PCA National Conference Dates

April 13-16, 2022


Conference location

Sheraton Seattle Hotel

1400 Sixth Avenue

Seattle, WA 98101

Please do not make hotel reservations until we establish the individualized link for our room block. 


Submission Information

The submission deadline is November 15, 2021.

Submit a Presentation

Purchase a Membership

Purchase Registration (coming soon)

Grants and Awards (coming soon)

Areas That Accept Undergraduate Submissions

All Subject Areas

Conference Code of Conduct



Area chairs

Claude Desmarais