Current Institutional Affiliation
Professor, German, Princeton University

Award Information

International Dissertation Research Fellowship 2001
Institutional Affiliation (at time of award):
Literature, Columbia University
All the Graphs, Reportage and Documentary in Weimar Germany and the Soviet Union

My project proposes to evaluate one particular aspect of the "Neue Sachlichkeit" ("New Objectivity") tendency: documentary. Though one of the most pervasive aesthetic developments of the 1920s, documentary continues to be neglected and undertheorized in fields that privilege the conceptual paradigm of "Realism vs. Modernism." "Neue Sachlichkeit" is of particular interest because it represents a moment of transformation that the avant-garde undertook at the end of modernism, and in this regard provides a crucial link between our own postwar culture and the modernist experiments undertaken before the war. My study will pay particular attention to the relationships of four diverse factographers (Tret'iakov, Mlinzenberg, Brannen and Reger) to the reproduction and broadcast technologies that emerged at the end of the 1920s, ie. media developments that questioned the boundaries between journalism and literature