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Germany: A Nation in its Time

Conventionally, historians argue either that nationalists invent nations or that nationalism is an irrational form of national attachment. By contrast, Helmut Walser Smith takes the long view in his new book, Germany. A Nation in its Time, and situates nationalism within the dramatic transformations of the nation itself. Drawing on literature, art, cartography, and the history of peace and war, Smith gives us an account of the German nation before, during, and potentially after its destructive nationalism.  

Date & Time

Oct. 23, 2020
3:30pm – 5:00pm

Location

Zoom Webinar
This event will be webcast live

Germany: A Nation in its Time

Click here to register for the webinar. Space in the Zoom webinar is available on a first-come first-serve basis and fills up very quickly, if you are unable to join the session or receive an error message, you can still watch on this page or on the NHC's Facebook Page once the event begins.

Conventionally, historians argue either that nationalists invent nations or that nationalism is an irrational form of national attachment. By contrast, Helmut Walser Smith takes the long view in his new book, Germany. A Nation in its Time, and situates nationalism within the dramatic transformations of the nation itself. Drawing on literature, art, cartography, and the history of peace and war, Smith gives us an account of the German nation before, during, and potentially after its destructive nationalism.  

Helmut Walser Smith is the Martha Rivers Ingram Professor of History at Vanderbilt University. He is the editor of the Oxford Handbook of Modern German History (OUP, 2011), and the author of the widely-acclaimed The Butchers Tale: Murder and Anti-Semitism in a German Town (W.W. Norton, 2002), as well as other books.  He is currently working on a book tentatively entitled “Facing the Past in Small-Town Germany, 1945-2000” as well as an “Atlas of German Studies.”

The Washington History Seminar is co-chaired by Eric Arnesen (George Washington University and the National History Center) and Christian Ostermann (Woodrow Wilson Center) and is organized jointly by the National History Center of the American Historical Association and the Woodrow Wilson Center's History and Public Policy Program. It meets weekly during the academic year. The seminar thanks its anonymous individual donors and institutional partners (the George Washington University History Department and the Lepage Center for History in the Public Interest) for their continued support.


Hosted By

History and Public Policy Program

The History and Public Policy Program uses history to improve understanding of important global dynamics, trends in international relations, and American foreign policy.  Read more

Global Europe Program

The Global Europe Program addresses vital issues affecting the European continent, U.S.-European relations, and Europe’s ties with the rest of the world. It does this through scholars-in-residence, seminars, policy study groups, media commentary, international conferences and publications. Activities cover a wide range of topics, from the role of NATO, the European Union and the OSCE to European energy security, trade disputes, challenges to democracy, and counter-terrorism. The program investigates European approaches to policy issues of importance to the United States, including globalization, digital transformation, climate, migration, global governance, and relations with Russia and Eurasia, China and the Indo-Pacific, the Middle East and Africa.  Read more