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Prof. Dr. Tobias Döring

Academic Year 2012/13

Tobias Döring, Professor of English Literature Studies at the LMU, is concerned in the academic year 2012/13 with the topic "Crises in Shakespeare - Shakespeare in Crises", examining the portrayal of crises in Shakespeare's work and the significance of Shakespeare's work for the cultural interpretation of crisis experiences.

Astoundingly often, political and cultural crises, according to Tobias Döring, are not only handled or mastered with reference to Shakespeare, but indeed through his work reach a position in which they can be illustrated and formulated in the first place. Shakespeare's dramas themselves portray crisis scenarios which can quite possibly be attributed not only to their contemporary involvement in a period of social upheaval, but could also be understood as a signature of their specific modernity. The investigation will focus on the way in which scenarios of war and demise, such as the Second World War and the German catastrophe, are made culturally negotiable through Shakespeare productions, as set out in Thomas Mann's demonic exile novel Doktor Faustus in the paradigm of his artist figure. Tobias Döring's work group includes Elisa Leroy, who, in her dissertation, interprets Shakespeare's dramas as discussions of language crises, and Johannes Ungelenk, who examines the motive of weather in Shakespeare's dramas as a boundary between order and chaos. Galena Hashhozheva is also affiliated with the work group as a postdoctoral researcher undertaking a project which interprets migration in the 16th and 17th centuries as a sign of a crisis of belonging and identity.

Professor Ewan Fernie, Shakespeare specialist at the University of Birmingham, will be visiting Munich for several periods of work as an external guest scholar.

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