"Historians and Historical Research at Iraqi Universities. A Survey".
The German Federal Ministry of Education (Bmbf) funds a project by Bashar Ibrahim and Jenny Oesterle (both members of the Arab German Young Academy of Sciences and Humanities)
[more info]


Dr. Carsten Wergin contributed a session on 'Listening Carefully' to the Radical Hope Syllabus. The group-sourced syllabus is intended as a resource for anyone interested in environmental issues - and how we, collectively and/or individually, might respond to them [more info]


Dr. Corinna Erckenbrecht (assoziiertes Mitglied der Nachwuchsforschergruppe Das transkulturelle Erbe Nordwest-Australiens) ist seit Mai 2018 neue Leiterin der Abteilung Weltkulturen und ihre Umwelt an den rem | Reiss-Engelhorn-Museen in Mannheim.

[mehr infos]


Jenny Oesterle organizes together with Prof. Dr. Susanne Lachenicht a section on the 52. deutschen Historikertag in Münster on the subject of  "Flight and Asylum from Antiquity to the Early Modern Period - transcultural perspectives" [more]



Dr. Jenny Rahel Oesterle and Dr. Carsten Wergin talk about their research in Open Access Video Journal Latest Thinking:


How Can Australian Indigenous Experience Change Western Perspectives of the World?


How Does Tourism Change People and Places?



Der Ruf des Schneckenhorns
Hermann Klaatsch (1863 – 1916). Ein Heidelberger Wissenschaftler in Nordwestaustralien




Russischsprachige Bevölkerung in Osteuropa – von der Titularnation zur Minderheit
Demokratische Transformation und gesellschaftliche Integration im Baltikum und in der Ukraine





Water, Knowledge and the Environment in Asia
Epistemologies, Practices and Locales

Water, Knowledge and the Environment in Asia

Edited by Ravi Baghel, Lea Stepan, Joseph K.W. Hill

[more info]


Lustre: Pearling and Australia


Edited by Tanya Edwards, Sarah Yu

[more info]



Anthropology in/of Australia Past and Present

as part of the Lecture Series
Introduction to Australian Studies:
(Trans-)Disciplinary Perspectives

Dr. Carsten Wergin

20 June 2017, University of Cologne

[more info]



The Trouble with Representation: Australian Indigenous World(view)s and the "White Magic" of Modernity

Dr. Carsten Wergin

06 April 2017, University of Western Australia

[more Info]


Curtin Indigenous Research Network Lecture Series:

Heritage, Transculturality and Collections: New Research from Germany and the Kimberley,

30 March 2017, Curtin University, Perth

[more info]


International Workshop:

"Refugee transfers in the Euro- Arab Mediterranean zone:
Tying the past with the present
Towards a transregional and transhistorical understanding in times of crises"

(10-12 April 2017 Lebanese American University, Byblos, Lebanon)

organized by

Dr. Jenny Oesterle (Research Group "Protection in Periods of Political and Religious Expansion) in cooperation with Dr. Tamirace Fakhoury (Lebanese American
University, Byblos) and the Arab German Young Academy of Sciences and Humanities


Collaborations of Biocultural Hope: Community Science Against Industrialisation in Northwest Australia


Dr. Carsten Wergin

[mehr Infos]


Expansion und Aktivitäten des Mercedarier-Ordens im Andenraum des 16. Jahrhunderts

Dr. Maret Keller

Anden Diss - Keller

​(Dissertationsschrift Universität Heidelberg 2013), URN: urn:nbn:de:bsz:16-heidok-187295


Dancehall und Homophobie
Postkoloniale Perspektiven auf die Geschichte und Kultur Jamaikas
Patrick HelberDancehall

​05/2015, 304 Seiten, kart.
ISBN 978-3-8376-3109-8

[weitere infos]


Materialities of Tourism
Special Issue of Tourist Studies (2014, 14/3)Guest-editors Stephen Muecke and Carsten Wergin




Caribbean Food Cultures
Culinary Practices and Consumption in the Caribbean and Its Diasporas
Food Cultures Transcript

05/2014, 306 pages,
ISBN 978-3-8376-2692-6
[for more information]

Group Anouncements

Trading Diasporas

Trading Diasporas in the Eastern Mediterranean (1250-1450)

Junior research group leader: Dr. phil. des. Georg Christ

Trade Embargoes

Profit and Commitment

Rhodes: Legal Pluralism and Transcultural Agency


Asso Kooperationen En


The research group ‘Trading Diasporas’ analyses how trading diasporas such as Venetian, Jewish, Greek or Persian communities, shaped the cultural boundaries in the late medieval Eastern Mediterranean.

Trading diasporas stood at the intersection of Mediterranean civilisations and were shaped by transcultural trade contacts as much as by “cultural” antagonisms. They acted as vanguards of their entities in foreign lands and thus mediated between “cultures” by constantly redrawing linguistic, legal, and economic borders.

The research group studies tensions within and between different diasporic groups and their “host” societies. We are interested in how these diasporas positioned themselves between their homeland and their host environment in the context of religious warfare and the concepts of jihad and crusade. To what extent was their internal organisation shaped by transcultural exchange and cultural antagonisms? Did they develop into parallel societies or did the merge with their host culture?  Ultimately, our research and public events are intended to contribute to a better understanding of historic and modern societies between transcultural integration and antagonistic conception of ‘cultures’. 



Union in Separation

“Union in Separation” is a three-day international conference hosted by the Transcultural Studies Programme at the University of Heidelberg. The conference focuses on transcultural diasporic communities in the medieval Mediterranean with specific respect to their role in trade between perceived separate cultural areas.

The term “transculturality” tends to be used to designate the hybrid character of modern-day societies and to ultimately argue that separate cultural units (defined as the sum of elements that characterise the aggregate identity of a society) do not exist. However, regardless of whether it is possible to speak of separate ‘cultures’, they certainly persist in peoples’ mind. These mindsets, their making and their impact on societies is what historians should investigate. [...] [Photos]


Workshop   MMDD

Diasporas and Transcultural Agency in the Eastern Mediterranean in the Late Middle Ages and the Early Modern Era

Between May 7th and 10th 2009 sixteen humanists from all fields of research and from the whole Europe went to Heidelberg to meet at arl-Jaspers-Center for Advanced Transcultural Studies. The workshop's aim was to get an overview of different diasporas in the Eastern Mediterranean in the Late Middle Ages. [...]

  The Medieval Mediterranean Diasporas Database's aim is to provide a platform for the storing of all the data that was stored prior in cue card systems, i.e. prosopographical data, places, events, literature and excerpts, textual sources and excerpts, objects and pictures. The database system disposes of a in-built project-management tool and interacts with metadatabases (library catalogues), a rudimentary GIS system and several wikis. [...]


Research projects

I . Trade Embargoes in a Changing World: Formulation - Enforcement - Coping Strategies in Northern Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean (1291-1400)

Dr. phil. des. Georg Christ, Junior Research Group Leader

Against the backdrop of the climate change and the demographic crisis of the Late Middle Ages, trade embargos of the Hanseatic league are compared with embargos in the Eastern Mediterranean in the Late Middle Ages. The struggle over the control of trade marked by trad embargos, withdrew merchants from legal spheres of trade and fostered strategies of evasion, e.g. smuggling. Economic, fiscal and military policies and the respective coping mechanisms shall not be understoos as "oppressive" regulations and (often) "criminal" reaction but, rather, as a multi-layered struggle over economic resources in times of change. [...]

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II. Profit and Commitment :  Economic Agency Relations in Venetian Mediterranean Trade, 1350-1450 

Franz-Julius Morche, M.Sc., Research Associate

The institutional design of agency relations in medieval long-distance trade has received considerable attention in both economic history and institutional economics. My research focuses on the transcultural elements of Venetian trade relationships with the Islamic Levant and Crete in the late medieval period. On the basis of merchant letters and judicial documents, I shall develop a theoretical framework that adequately accounts for the observed historical trade patterns. This is intended as an extension of existing institutional theories of impersonal exchange that are confined to mono-cultural environments. [...]

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III. Latin Rhodes and European Malta: Two Fortress-Islands at the Borders of the Western World

Teresa Satore, M.A.,  Research Associate

In this research project I will argue that in present times, as in the medieval period, imaginary but also real fortresses were and are created to defend the European territory and the “Western identity” from an alleged “infidel” threat.
Key issues will be: the clash/encounter between social/religious/ethnic groups in transcultural societies, the emergence of diasporic identities and legal pluralism and yesterday’s and today’s perception of an alleged Islamic menace and its consequences. Interesting analogies and differences emerge by the study, on the one hand, of crusades and medieval diplomatic and unofficial relations between Christians and “infidels”, and, on the other hand, contemporary preventive wars and restrictive migration policies, also under the light of the impact of recent North African revolutions. [...]

IV. Alliance Strategies of Trading Cities in a Comparative Perspective – Stralsund and Constance in the Late Middle Ages

Sylvie Schwarzwälder

Alliances of late medieval cities were crucial means to defend political autonomy and to overcome trade barriers.  By comparing two important trading cities – Stralsund and Constance – this dissertation project analyses alliances between cities in the 14th century and asks how strategies of medieval cities changed and developed over the course of the fourteenth century in response to economic, demographic and political challenges. [...]

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V. Associated Members and Cooperations

Anna K. Angermann, M.A.

Dr. Phil. Andrea Mozzato

Cooperation with the CEU Budapest


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