2020 GSA Virtual Conference

Dear members and friends of the GSA,

This is the first in a series of regular updates on our plans for the rest of this year and beyond.  Please forgive the length, but we want to be as transparent and detailed as possible.

After many weeks of research, discussion, observation, and negotiation, the Executive Council of the German Studies Association is able to announce that the 44th Annual Conference will take place as a virtual conference. The membership survey to which so many of you responded made it very clear that the majority of our members were reluctant to attend an in-person conference this year even if public health concerns were sharply reduced and/or transatlantic travel were again possible.  It is very apparent that those concerns will not be allayed in the fall of this year, and that travel to Washington, DC, will be risky or impossible or both.  Consequently, the GSA Board unanimously decided at a special meeting to move the conference online.

We are happy to report that our host hotel, the Crystal Gateway Marriott, has very generously agreed to release us from our 2020 contract without penalty.  That penalty would have been very substantial, so we

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GSA Conference Survey and Election Results

Please note: the survey will close July 3, 2020, 5pm EDT. 

Dear GSA Members,

As promised in our Spring Newsletter, we write to you today in the wake of a special GSA Executive Board meeting: on June 15th, Board members convened on Zoom to discuss various options for our conference in the fall, originally scheduled for October 1-4 in Washington, DC. We realize that many of you are anxious to hear whether, and in what form, that conference will take place. While we are still in discussions with the hotel and with providers of online conferences, we can assure you that we have every intention of holding our conference, even if the exact format is yet to be finalized. For this purpose, we are also seeking your input by way of this brief six-question survey, which we would ask you to complete by the end of June. In return, we plan to provide you with further details of our fall conference planning by the middle of July.

Please contact Dr. Benita Blessing ( if you have any questions about the survey. The survey will also be sent to members' email addresses and made available through social media.... Read more

DEI Committee Statement

June 3, 2020

To: GSA Membership

From:  The newly established Committee for the Initiative on Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (DEI)

This initiative was established by the Executive Board of the GSA in spring 2020. We the undersigned, as its first members, have been meeting to chart a future course for the GSA to assure that it transforms itself into a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive professional organization. Utilizing the diversity of our own scholarly research and teaching and experiences within the profession and the society at large, our first priority has been to open up communication about how differently the organization and its activities are experienced by its members, especially those who come from historically and currently underrepresented and socioeconomically underprivileged backgrounds within German Studies.

The current national situation in the United States illustrates why we each need to commit to understanding societal hierarchies and racial differences around police brutality, the very real dangers of being Black or Brown in America, and the systemic racism that infuses our country.

Genocide, slavery, racism, antisemitism, xenophobia, and many other forms of discriminatory practices saturate the history of the country in which our organization is based.

It is well documented by now that... Read more

CfA: Editor, German Studies Review

The German Studies Association is searching for an editor for its flagship journal, the German Studies Review, a leading journal of interdisciplinary German Studies. Applications are due July 15, 2020. Please click here for more information. Read more

Spring GSA Newsletter

Please read our Spring Newsletter. It includes some updates on our plans for the year, information about upcoming elections, and more! Read more

Volunteers Needed for Moderating/Commenting

Dear colleagues, 

As we finalize our GSA program, we need several moderators and commentators right away, and we will need a list of volunteers in case of future withdrawals from the program. If you have no more than one role in the conference (defined as participation of any kind in a panel, roundtable, or seminar) and you’re willing to take on another, please go to the submissions portal ( and fill out the Moderator and Commentator Application.

We recognize that it is difficult for all of us to think about plans for a conference during these uncertain times. We'll keep members posted with updates on this website and via email. 

We appreciate your assistance!


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UPDATE: GSA conference plans and COVID-19

30 March 2020

Dear members and friends of the German Studies Association,

The German Studies Association is keenly aware of the myriad ways in which the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting every aspect of our lives, including our work and our scholarship. Above all, the health and safety of all our members (and their families) in each of the 31 countries we inhabit take top priority. The Executive Council is constantly monitoring the situation, even as the ground seems to shift beneath our feet every day. We are working closely and steadily with a number of partner organizations, especially as we consider the future of our annual conference scheduled for the beginning of October. 

Meanwhile, our Program Committee has been reviewing the proposals that were submitted earlier this year, and within a week we shall begin to send out official acceptance notifications.  This promises to be one of our strongest programs yet, and in proceeding with these notifications in the face of all this uncertainty, we want to recognize the thought and preparation that everyone has invested into the October conference already, even if its exact shape is still up in the air. No matter... Read more

GSA - Opportunities to Become Involved

SUBJECT: GSA - Opportunities to Become Involved

FROM: Johannes von Moltke

February 24, 2020

Dear friends and colleagues, members of the GSA,

I write with an invitation to become involved in one of the many roles and committees that make the German Studies Association run. 

Having reached out to many of you in the past with requests to serve on particular committees, I have been humbled by the investment that members show in the GSA and by their readiness to serve. Now we are looking to broaden the base for anyone interested in volunteering by asking you to identify a fellow member or yourself for consideration by the nominating committee. 

You may express your interest in one or more positions and/or nominate another member by navigating to this short form, where we have listed opportunities for involvement.

In particular, I would like to draw your attention to the newly formed committee on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. This committee, which will be chaired by former President Irene Kacandes and include at least one Board Member and one member at large, will be charged with two primary tasks: to advise the board on ways of making the GSA as diverse, equitable,... Read more