Austria at the German Studies Association Annual Conference

From left: Professor Günter Bischof, Honorary Consul General Ferdinand Seefried, and ACFNY Deputy Director Christian Ebner

From left: Professor Günter Bischof, Honorary Consul General Ferdinand Seefried, and ACFNY Deputy Director Christian Ebner

The Fourty-First Annual Conference of the German Studies Association (GSA) was held in Atlanta, GA, from October 5 - 8, 2017.

The GSA is the premier multi- and interdisciplinary association of scholars focused on German, Austrian, and Swiss history, literature, culture studies, political science, and economics. The annual conference brings together over 1,000 scholars to present the latest research in these fields; over the last three years, the Austrian Press- and Information Service has been presenting ongoing research on the Austrian image in the United States.

Austrian Reception and Awards

Christine Moser, Director of the Austrian Cultural Forum New York (ACFNY) hosted the annual evening networking reception for scholars with a focus on Austria and their colleagues.  On the occasion, Dr. Christoph Ramoser of the Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy and ACFNY Deputy Director Christian Ebner presented several travel grants and scholarships to young scholars participating in the conference. In addition, Professor Howard Louthan, director of the Center for Austrian Studies at the University of Minnesota, awarded the R. John Rath Prize for the best article published in the Austrian History Yearbook. The winner of the combined 2016 and 2017 R. John Rath Article Prize is Stephen A. Walsh, "Liberalism at High Latitudes: The Politics of Polar Exploration in the Habsburg Monarchy," AHY 47 (2016): 89-106. The committee applauded Dr. Walsh's article for explicating the cultural and political significance of a seemingly peripheral polar expedition, the Tegetthoff Expedition of 1872-1874. Dr. Walsh interweaves fundraising for the expedition, relations between Berlin and Vienna, the multinational nature of the Habsburg empire and the expedition itself, and contemporary enthusiasm for scientific progress to show how the expedition coincided with many liberal aspects of the time.

The Radomir Luza Prize

Professor Günter Bischof, director of the Austrian Marshall Plan Center for European Studies at the University of New Orleans and Dr. Winfried Garscha of the Documentation Archive of the Austrian Resistance awarded the GSA's Radomir Luza Prize to Dr. Erin Hochman of Southern Methodist University for her book Imagining a Greater Germany: Republican Nationalism and the Idea of the Anschluss (Cornell UP 2016) in "Central European History in the World War Two Era." The prize money was contributed by the Future Fund of the Republic of Austria.

The Austrian Desk

The Austrian Embassy in Washington and the Austrian Cultural Forum New York staffed and furnished an Austrian Desk in the conference's exhibit area to present new publications and activities of the ACFNY and the Center Austria in New Orleans. The desk also served as a meeting point during conference breaks and was visited by guest of honor Ferdinand Seefried, the Austrian Honorary Consul General in Atlanta. 


The Austrian Cultural Forum New York, together with the German Academic Exchange service (DAAD) also supported the participation of Eric Jarosinski, the self-proclaimed failed intellectual aka @neinquarterly on Twitter, at this year’s GSA conference.

Below: The effects of Hurricane Nate led to travel issues for conference participants.