Jost Hermand

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Jost Hermand in July 2010

Jost Hermand (born April 11, 1930 in Kassel ) is a German university professor for literary studies and cultural history .

Live and act

After attending primary school in Berlin, Hermand came to Poland in 1940 as a ten-year-old until 1945 through the NS Kinderland deportation . From 1950 he studied literature, philosophy, history and art history in Marburg with a doctorate under Friedrich Sengle and Richard Hamann-Mac Lean in 1955. He then went to East Berlin with Richard Hamann , where he worked on the book series on “German Art and Culture from the Wilhelminian Period to Expressionism ”began, published 1959-75 by Akademie-Verlag . Expelled from the GDR in 1957, he has lived in the United States since 1958 and is Professor of Modern German Literature and German Cultural History at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has also been an honorary professor at the Humboldt University in Berlin since 2003 . He has held numerous visiting professorships as a literary, music and art scholar at American universities (Harvard, Texas) and German universities (Marburg, Kassel, Bremen, Oldenburg, Freiburg, Essen, Potsdam, Munich, Cologne, Gießen, FU-Berlin).

Honors and memberships

  • Co-founder and honorary member of the Hans Mayer Society
  • Fellow and curator of the Institute for Critical Theory
  • Fellow of the American Council of Learned Societies
  • Member of the Saxon Academy of Sciences
  • Senior Fellow of the International Research Center for Cultural Studies Vienna
  • Vilas Research Professor of German, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Honorary Member of the American Association of Teachers of German
  • Founding Member of the International Brecht Society
  • Member of the German PEN club abroad
  • Hilldale Award for Academic Excellence, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Honored Teaching Award, University of Wisconsin-Madison (2009/2010)
  • Co-founder of the North American Heinrich Heine Society
  • Member of the Vormärz Research Forum
  • Silver medal from the ver.di union
  • Dr. phil. hc from the University of Kassel


Editor or Associate Editor

  • Base. Yearbook for contemporary German literature. With Reinhold Grimm 1970–1980.
  • Brecht yearbook. With Reinhold Grimm 1971–1980.
  • Literature in the historical process. With Klaus R. Scherpe, Gert Mattenklott and Helmut Peitsch 1981–1989.
  • German Life and Civilization. 1987ff.
  • Wisconsin Workshop Series. With Reinhold Grimm, Hans Adler and Marc Silberman 1970–2000.
  • Stories from the ghetto . Athenäums Taschenbuch by anton hain, Frankfurt am Main 1990, ISBN 3-445-04747-2 .
  • German Secret Societies: From the Early Modern Age to the Present . Böhlau-Verlag, Cologne, 272 pages, 2013, by Jost Hermand (Hrsg.) (Author), Sabine Mödersheim (Hrsg.) (Author).


  • Colorful List edited by Helen Fehervary, Carol Poore, and Janet Swaffar. 1990.
  • Responsibility and Commitment. Ethical postulates of cultural mediation. Edited by Klaus L. Berghahn, Robert C. Holub and Klaus R. Scherpe. 1996.
  • Heroes and Heroism in German Culture. Essays in Honor of Jost Hermand. Edited by Stephen Brockmann and James Steakley. 2001.
  • Kai Artinger: "Crossing borders in many ways. Richard Hamann's and Jost Hermand's cultural history book series 'German Art and Culture from the Wilhelminian Age to Expressionism'" in: Science between East and West: The art historian Richard Hamann as a border crosser , Marburg 2009
  • The Temptation of Hope. From Thomas More to Ernst Bloch and Beyond. Edited by Klaus L. Berghahn. 2011.

Web links