Loyola University Chicago

Modern Languages and Literatures


Symposium of the North American Society for Exile Studies

Symposium of the North American Society for Exile Studies

Ernst Barlach, Man Reading in the Wind (1922)

Symposium of the North American Society for Exile Studies

Early Stages of Exile:

Somewhere Between Home and Arrival

On May 18-19, 2018, the Dept. of Modern Languages and Literatures and the College of Arts and Sciences is hosting a meeting of theNorth American Society for Exile Studies (NASES) on the Lake Shore Campus of Loyola University with papers and other events surrounding the topic of the“Early Stages of Exile: Somewhere Between Home and Arrival” within the context of German Exile Studies.

Whereas exile is usually defined as the time when an individual is forced to live abroad, unwillingly separated from home and often banned from it, it can also be understood more broadly as a process that already starts in the homeland, in transit and/or before arriving in the country of exile. These are the early stages of exile: desillusionment and alienation for political, racist, religious or linguistic reasons, also for reasons of sexual orientation; censorship; the complicated inner debate for or against the path into exile; networks of resistence and abandoning them; the bureaucratic hurdles of leaving; border crossings and the often adventurous trip itself; stops in other countries on the way into exile; learning a new language. All of these stages already incorporate exile to varying degrees, the psychological confrontation with it and the practical preparation for it. In view of the stubborn historical persistence of exile, these early stages of exile are not limited to the time of Nationalsocialism, but also encompass other time periods up to the current movements of migration to the German-speaking world.

Scholars from Chicago, the US, Europe and Asia are looking forward to the NASES meeting. The symposium in being held in honor of Egon Schwarz (1922-2017), himself an exile from Austria who contributed in countless ways to exile studies during his long academic career. The drawing by Ernst Barlach, Man Reading in the Wind (1922), serves as the motif for the conference, capturing the early stages of exile in an artistically condensed form. The symposium is also connected with a traveling exhibition sponsored by the German National Library with the title of “Exile: Experience and Testimony.” After the symposium, it will be on display on the main floor of Cudahy Library until June 1st.

For more details about the symposium, please contact Dr. Reinhard Andress, Director of German Studies at randress@luc.edu.