Hans Süssmuth

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Hans Süssmuth in June 2013 at the awarding of the Adalbert Prize in Budapest in the Sándor-Palais

Hans Süssmuth (born March 4, 1935 in Emsdetten ) is a German historian , history teacher , publisher and board member .

Early years and education

In 1955, Hans Süssmuth passed his Abitur at the Arnoldinum Humanist High School in Burgsteinfurt . He studied law, history, philosophy and Latin philology at the Universities of Freiburg and Münster. After passing the first state examination (1962) in history, philosophy and Latin, he was entrusted by the rector of the University of Münster with the job of a tutor for the Thomas-More-Kolleg student dormitory. The director of the home was the then private lecturer Hans Küng . In 1964 he received a Thyssen Foundation scholarship to complete his dissertation.


In 1964 and 1965 he worked as a trainee lawyer at grammar schools in Burgsteinfurt and Münster. After receiving his doctorate in 1965, he also passed the second state examination (assessor examination) in the same year. This was followed by three years as a research assistant at the Historical Institute of the Osnabrück University of Education at Ernst Weymar's chair . In 1968 he was appointed to the Academic Council. Teaching assignments took him to the Pädagogische Hochschule Ruhr in 1968 and 1969 . In 1969 he received two calls to Baden-Württemberg that he did not accept. In 1969 he accepted a position at the Pedagogical University of Rhineland , Department Neuss, for the Chair of Modern History and History Didactics.

From 1970 to 1972 he was a member of the Senate of the Rhineland University of Education and from 1972 to 1974 dean of the Rhineland University of Education, Neuss department. In 1974 he was offered a position at the Pedagogical University in Berlin, which he did not accept. In 1974 and 1975 he was a member of the specialist committee for the history of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia. From 1974 to 1976 he was rector of the Rhineland University of Education with the departments of Aachen, Bonn, Cologne, Neuss and Wuppertal. In 1978 he was re-elected dean of the Pädagogische Hochschule Rheinland, Neuss department, with the task of merging with the University of Düsseldorf .

In 1980 Hans Süssmuth took over the Chair VII for Modern History and Didactics of History at the Institute for History of the University of Düsseldorf. 1980 to 1990 he cooperated with the Social Studies Development Center of the Indiana University Bloomington / Indiana / USA. In 1982 he was visiting professor there.

In 1984 he was elected Dean of the Philosophical Faculty of the University of Düsseldorf. He expanded the Philosophical Faculty to include the Asia Institute with a focus on Modern Japan and the Institute for Media Studies. In 1995 he established the series Düsseldorf Media Studies Lectures and in 1998 the series Düsseldorf Communication and Media Studies Studies together with Vittoria Borsò and Rudolf Heinz. From 1986 to 1988 he was a member of the Senate of the University of Düsseldorf. In 2000 he was visiting professor at the Charles University in Prague.

After his retirement, Hans Süssmuth took on voluntary work. In 2000 he established the new series of the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf yearbooks with a new concept. He edited the years 2000 to 2010. In 2008 he started the initiative to found the düsseldorf university press GmbH together with Detlev Riesner, H. Jörg Thieme and Winfried Hamel, the science publisher of Heinrich Heine University . The managing directors are Dieter Häussinger, Hans Süssmuth and Wolfgang Teubig.

From 2001 to 2015, Hans Süssmuth was a member of the jury of the Journalist Prize Pro Ehrenamt - Hermann Wilhelm Thywissen Prize of the Rhein-Kreis Neuss.

From 2008 to 2016 he was a member of the board of the Forum Archive and History Neuss e. V.

As spokesman for the board of the Adalbert Foundation Krefeld, founded in 1989, Hans Süssmuth, together with his board colleagues Dieter Gobbers and Hans Hermann Henrix, heads this Central European Foundation , which aims to highlight the importance of the four Visegrád states of Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Hungary with their specific services to raise public awareness of the peaceful revolutions and the subsequent transformation processes, to locate them for future generations and to learn from these events of the century for the future.

In September 2017 he was awarded the Rhineland Taler by the Rhineland Regional Council.

Hans Süssmuth is married to Rita Süssmuth , with whom he has a daughter.

Works (selection)

Hans Süssmuth published numerous fundamental publications on the didactics of history. Further fields of work are: theories in historical studies, media history, country image research, GDR and Germany research as well as Central European studies.


  • Studies on the Utopia of Thomas More. A contribution to the intellectual history of the 16th century. Aschendorff, Münster 1967.
  • History didactics. An introduction to tasks and fields of work. Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, Göttingen 1980, ISBN 3-525-33436-2 .
  • A short history of the CDU women's union. Successes and setbacks 1948–1990. Nomos, Baden-Baden 1990, ISBN 3-7890-2166-0 .
  • Images of Germany in Europe. ZV, Bonn 1995, ISBN 3-929122-13-8 .
  • with Max Plassmann : Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf. From foundation to excellence. Düsseldorf University Press, Düsseldorf 2015, ISBN 3-943460-73-8 .
  • with Hans Hecker and Leo Peters: The International Adalbert Prize for Peace, Freedom and Cooperation in Europe Prize winners 1995–2015 , Düsseldorf 2016, ISBN 978-3-95758-030-6 .



  • Idea and Reality of the Holy War , in: International Yearbook for History and Geography Lessons, Volume X, Braunschweig 1965/1966, pp. 5–48.
  • “Holy War” - Barrier of Peace , in: SAEULUM XXII, Heft 4 (1971), pp. 387–401.
  • Learning objectives and curriculum elements of a history lesson according to a structured procedure , in: BpB (Ed.), Learning objectives and selection of subjects in political instruction, Bonn 1972, pp. 37–83.
  • The contribution of historical science to the study of the subject of social sciences , in: E. Forndran, HH Hummell, H. Süssmuth, study course social sciences: To the definition of a subject, Düsseldorf 1978, pp. 63-136.
  • Historical social science and historical anthropology , in: Jörn Rüsen / Hans Süssmuth (eds.), Theorien in der Geschichtswwissenschaft, Düsseldorf 1980, pp. 138–173.
  • Structural history and history didactics. Impulses for a didactic reorientation in history didactic positions. Inventory and reorientation. Schöningh, Paderborn 1980, pp. 121-177.
  • Curriculum Development in Political Education. A Report on the Federal Republic of Germany , in: Teaching Political Science, Vol. 6, No, 3, April 1981, pp. 363-384.
  • History class in the USA. Challenges and Answers, In: Internationale Schulbuchforschung 4, 1982, pp. 215–235.
  • Continuity and Reorientation in Social Studies in the USA , In: From Politics and Contemporary History. Supplement to the weekly newspaper "Das Parlament", Volume 4, 1982, pp. 25–37.
  • Story told in the mass press , In: Siegfried Quandt / Hans Süssmuth (Hrsg.): Telling history. Forms and Functions, Göttingen 1982, pp. 171–203.
  • History and anthropology , In: Hans Süssmuth (Hrsg.): Historische Anthropologie. Man in History, Göttingen 1984, pp. 5-18.
  • How Germans deal with their history. The Luther Jubilee 1983 , In: Universität Düsseldorf (Ed.): Yearbook of the University of Düsseldorf 1981-1983, Düsseldorf 1984, pp. 210-226.
  • Martin Luther 1983 in both German states , In: Hans Süssmuth (Hrsg.): The Luther heritage in Germany. Droste. Düsseldorf 1985, pp. 16-40.
  • Luther in the grip of television. Between critical interpretation and mediation of traditional clichés , In: Hans Süssmuth (Hrsg.): The Luther heritage in Germany. Droste. Düsseldorf 1985, pp. 337-361.
  • The Luther Jubilee 1983. On the connection between history and the public , In: Yearbook of Religious Education 1.1985, pp. 147–159.
  • The German Question and Securing Peace in Europe, In: Historical Seminar of the University of Düsseldorf (ed.): Peace in History and Present, Düsseldorf 1985, pp. 175–192.
  • The GDR 1989/90. Revolution and democratic new beginning, In: Ulrich Kleiner (ed.): Managing is shaping. Festschrift for Armin Danko, Düsseldorf 1990, pp. 419–420.
  • Continuities in Transition - Images of Germany in Eastern and Western Europe , In: Tel Aviver Yearbook for German History XXVI, Gerlinge 1997, pp. 215–233.
  • The state of North Rhine-Westphalia. History of origins and British press policy , In: Bernhard Boll / Volker Schulze / Hans Süssmuth: Newspaper State North Rhine-Westphalia. History - profiles - structure. Zeitungs-Verlag, Bonn 1993, pp. 13-33.
  • Historical Communication and the Didactics of History: Federal Republic of Germany , In: Karl Pellens / Siegfried Quandt / Hans Süssmuth: Historical Culture - Historical Communication , Frankfurt 1994, pp. 183–222.
  • with Gordon R. Mork : Historical Communication and the Didactics of History: The United States of America , In: Karl Pellens / Siegfried Quandt / Hans Süssmuth: Historical Culture - Historical Communication, Frankfurt 1994, pp. 345-366.
  • with Christoph Peters: The unification of Germany in the mirror of English daily newspapers , In: Hans Süssmuth (Ed.): Pictures of Germany in Denmark and England, in France and in the Netherlands. Nomos, Baden-Baden 1996, pp. 267-280.
  • The Interaction of Structure and Personality as a Methodological Challenge for German Historical Science , In: Rudi Keller / Karl Menges: Emerging Structures in Interdisciplinary Perspective, Türbingen, Basel 1997, pp. 15-26.
  • Revolution, transformation, European integration. On the path of the states of East Central Europe since 1989 , In: Hans Süssmuth (ed.): Transformation processes in the states of East Central Europe 1989-1995, Düsseldorf, 1998, pp. 11–30.
  • with Detlev Riesner : The foundation of the science publisher düsseldorf university press GmbH , In: H. Michael Piper (Ed.): Yearbook of the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf 2010, Düsseldorf 2011, pp. 709–721.
  • Understanding Árpád Göncz in context. A political portrait, In: Hans Süssmuth (ed.): Árpád Göncz. Hungarian freedom fighter and president. düsseldorf university press, Düsseldorf 2013, pp. 10–49.

Individual evidence

  1. http://www.lvr.de/de_1/nav_main/derlvr/presse_1/pressemmeldung/press_report_107297.jsp  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Rhineland thaler@1@ 2Template: Dead Link / www.lvr.de  

Web links

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