Berlin continues to be the subject of intense debates on architecture, history, and memory, the future of the metropolis, and the new configurations of space, place, and identity in post-Wall Europe. The overdetermined role of architecture in these debates has shed new light on the unique spatial configurations and social topographies of East and West Berlin between 1945 and 1989. At the same time, the perspective of German unification has brought into relief the similarities between East and West Berlin, the strategic and symbolic function of the divided city during the Cold War, and the extraterritorial qualities associated with West Berlin with the culture of the Federal Republic. Reconstructing the central role of Berlin within these postwar discourses of nation, modernity, and postmodernity requires interdisciplinary readings of urban images, narratives, practices, and ideologies. This workshop will approach the history and culture of the divided city from a wide range of disciplinary perspectives, including architectural history, film studies, German literature, art history, German history, and political science.
An anthology will be published in conjunction with the workshop.