Claus-Dieter Krohn

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Claus-Dieter Krohn, 2014

Claus-Dieter Krohn (born July 30, 1941 in Hamburg ; † September 6, 2019 ) was a German historian . Until his retirement he was a professor at the Leuphana University of Lüneburg .


Krohn studied history, German and political science at the University of Hamburg and FU Berlin and, with his doctorate in 1973, was one of the last doctoral students of the Hamburg historian Fritz Fischer . At the Free University of Berlin, he then worked as a historian in the German studies department on an interdisciplinary project on the social history of literature. In 1975, he and other younger scientists from various disciplines moved to the then still Lüneburg University of Education, which was about to be transferred to a comprehensive college / university. There he initially taught history with a focus on social and economic history; from the mid-1980s with the establishment of a new course in cultural studies, then social and cultural history.

Krohn was married to the adult educator and early migration researcher Elisabeth Grundmann .


Krohn's main research interests were in the field of economic history until his habilitation. His habilitation thesis in 1979 at the University of Hanover on the political character of economic theory formation in Germany in the 1920s marked a new research horizon. It made it clear that the representatives of the most innovative theoretical approaches and the most original practical recommendations for fighting the permanent social problems in the Weimar Republic and the Great Depression were suddenly no longer there after the National Socialists came to power. With this, Krohn's work began in the then new field of exile research, which at that time was primarily aimed at literary and political exile. With his study of the unique University in Exile, founded at the New School for Social Research in New York , he was one of the pioneers of research that not only looked at exiles waiting to return, but also those displaced from Germany. who wanted to integrate and acculturate as emigrants in their countries of refuge. During the initial phase of exile research, he took on a number of important functions in the resulting network, for example as co-editor of the yearbook EXILFORSCHUNG founded in 1983, and then on the board of the Society for Exile Research. Krohn's work was funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) as part of its two priority programs on exile research; his studies on economic emigration, together with other work produced at the same time and on other disciplines, gave the impetus to establish the second DFG focus on academic emigration from 1987. As a member and long-term chairman of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Herbert and Elsbeth Weichmann Foundation, founded in 1989 For more than 20 years he has also committed himself to the financial support of exile research in accordance with the purpose of the foundation. As a scientific advisor, he has been working on the Exilmuseum Foundation, which has been operating in Berlin since 2017, on the planning of an exile museum to be established there.

In addition, in the run-up to the 100th anniversary of the founding of the youth movement on the Hohen Meissner in 1913, as a former member of the Bundische Jugend during the 1950s, he dealt in more detail with the traditions that it followed when it was re-established after the Second World War. Using the example of his Jungenschaftsbund as the successor to the German Jungenschaft (dj1.11) founded by Eberhard Koebel / tusk in 1929, he investigated the question of how far they understood themselves as "repeating" or "self-struggling" according to its former dictum who autonomously developed a new, critical and democratic self-image in the young Federal Republic.

Fonts (selection)

  • Economic theories as political interests. Academic economics in Germany 1918-1933. Frankfurt / New York: Campus 1981. ISBN 3-593-32953-0 .
  • Science in exile. German social and economic scientists in the USA and the New School for Social Research. Frankfurt / New York: Campus 1987, ISBN 3-593-33820-3 . (American edition: "Intellectuals in Exile. Refugee Scholars and the New School for Social Research." Amherst 1993, ISBN 0-87023-864-7 ).
  • Emil Lederer: The mass state. Dangers of the classless society. Edited and introduced by Claus-Dieter Krohn, translated by Angela Kornberger, Graz / Vienna 1995, ISBN 3-901402-03-9 (= Library of Social Science Emigrants, Vol. 2).
  • The Philosophical Economist. On the intellectual biography of Adolph Lowe. Marburg 1996, ISBN 3-89518-081-5 .
  • Handbook of German-speaking Emigration 1933-1945. Darmstadt 1998 (ed. With Patrik von zur Mühlen, Gerhard Paul and Lutz Winckler), ISBN 3-89678-086-7 .
  • Biographical handbook of German-speaking economic emigration after 1933. 2 volumes, Munich 1999 (edited with Harald Hagemann), ISBN 3-598-11284-X .
  • Exile and reorganization. Contributions to constitutional development in Germany after 1945. Düsseldorf 2000, ISBN 3-7700-5230-7 (= documents and texts. Ed. With Martin Schumacher and the Commission for the History of Parliamentarism and Political Parties, Vol. 6).
  • Between the chairs? Remigrants and remigration in the German media public in the post-war period. Hamburg 2002 (Ed. With Axel Schildt), ISBN 3-7672-1411-3 .
  • Arnold Brecht, 1884-1977. Democratic official and political scientist in Berlin and New York. Stuttgart 2006 (Ed. With Corinna R. Unger), ISBN 3-515-08883-0 .
  • Socialization conditions of youth activists in the 1960s. in: Yearbook of the Archives of the German Youth Movement, NF 4/2007, p. 31 ff., ISBN 978-3-89974463-7 .
  • Article " Emigration 1933–1945 / 1950 ", in: European History Online (EGO), ed. by the Institute for European History (IEG), Mainz , published on May 31, 2011.
  • Article Exilforschung , Version 1.0, in: Docupedia-Zeitgeschichte , published on December 20, 2012.

Literature (selection)

  • Kürschner's German Scholar's Calendar.
  • University of Hanover. Festschrift for the 150th anniversary. Vol. 2: Catalogus Professorum 1831-1981. Stuttgart 1981

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Obituary notice Claus-Dieter Krohn , FAZ , October 9, 2019