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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Faculty of Humanities and Social Science - History of Education

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Department Profile

The research interests in the department of the History of Education are  thematically, theoretically and methodically as diverse as the intellectual profiles that are gathered in the department. Thus, many of the research projects are approached with a wide range of perspectives from new cultural studies.

Focuses lie on questions of the implementation of pedagogical discourses, on images – in the figurative as well as in the literal sense – and in respective patterns of interpretation of materiality and physicalness. Also the emotionality of education and Bildung and their role in processes of subjectification and normalization, for example through evaluations or techniques of examination, of culturality of practices and perspectives of the world and the formation of a regime of truth are part of this interpretation. Likewise, questions of the relation of Bildung and decolonization are being pursued.

Preferably such problem fields are being worked on in a comparative and international perspective as this promises new and more far-ranging insights. Many of our study and research projects concentrate on institutionalized practices of Bildung and on the general education system.

The regional focus of our research is on Western Europe and Latin America with outlooks to non-European contexts like India, China, Japan and several African countries. The department bears a long research tradition in the history of education of the German Democratic Republic (GDR). Accordingly, the methodological approaches used in the department are manifold: from qualitative discourse-, content- and network-analysis via studies on transfer, diffusion and reception to image and photography analysis.