Dr. habil. Magdalena Saryusz-Wolska: Visual Cultures in Times of Change. How Did Images Shape Social Realities around 1945 and 1989?


Mo. 17.04.2023 | 17:00 Uhr

Images, such as films, posters, magazines’ covers and many others, are more than just representations of contemporary realities. Ever since the ‘visual turn’ in the early 1990s, cultural scholars agree that images contribute actively to contemporary social life. They do not merely mirror the world around them; they shape it. What has been studied with regard to late modernity is also applicable to historical research. What was the role of images in shaping social realities and the ideas of new ‘normalcy’in the crucial moments around 1945 and 1989 in Poland and Germany? How did popular visual culture affect the post-1945 and post-1989 years? The lecture is based on a discussion
of popular images which back then introduced new norms and values to both societies.

Born in 1980, Magdalena Saryusz-Wolska studied cultural studies and sociology at the Universities in Lodz, Giessen and Mainz. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Lodz in 2008 and completed her habilitation at the University of Warsaw in 2016. Since 2008, she has been an assistant professor at the Institute of Contemporary Culture at the University of Lodz.She held a research fellowship at the Centre for Historical Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Berlin from 2010 to 2015, after which she became a research fellow at the German Historical Institute Warsaw. From 2018 to 2020, she was also a visiting professor and Humboldt Research Fellow at the Johannes Gutenberg Universität-Mainz. Her research fields are: Film and media history since 1945, visual history, collective and cultural memory, reception studies.

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