Goodbye, "Mutti!": Reflecting on the 16 years of legacy of Kanzlerin Merkel

deadline for submissions: 
March 12, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
Graduate Association of Germanic Language Students - UT Austin
contact email: 

Goodbye, "Mutti!"

Reflecting on the 16 years of legacy of Kanzlerin Merkel

Keynote Speaker:

Dr. Nicole G. Burgoyne

University of Chicago

Friday, April 1st, 2022

The University of Texas at Austin

The Graduate Association of Germanic Language Students would like to invite our fellow graduate students to join us for our ninth biennial Graduate Student Conference of the Department of Germanic Studies.

Germany is at a turning point in having to say goodbye, after sixteen years, to its first female chancellor, Angela Merkel. Sixteen years characterized by a series of one crisis after the other including but not limited to: the 2008 financial crisis; Europe’s migration crisis; the rise of a new wave of extremist right-wing groups; growing concern about our climate and environment; and not to be forgotten, the global pandemic that changed the world in 2020. Despite these issues, Angela Merkel became to be seen by many Germans as a symbol of stability and reason, earning her the nickname of Germany’s “Mutti”.

With this conference, we propose creating an intersectional space to look back on the last sixteen years in Germany’s history and the years leading up to it. We invite proposals that may relate to events and themes that stood out during Merkel’s term of office, such as but not restricted to:

  • Gender and positions of power
  • Leading figures and their relationship to whom they represent
  • Identity in a globalized world
  • The role and place of religion in today’s societies
  • Post-reunification Germany
  • Marginalized groups, xenophobia
  • (Im)migration and asylum seekers
  • (National) identity, transnationalism
  • Environmentalism
  • The European Union’s sphere of influence

The extended deadline for submission is March 12th, 2022. Abstract proposals should be no more than 250 words in length, accompanied by a brief biography, suitable for a conference introduction, and should be submitted through the website