University of Minnesota
Center for Austrian Studies

Welcome to the Center for Austrian Studies

An interdisciplinary center for the study of the Habsburg Empire, Austria and other successor states, and the new Europe.


Join us for an architectural historian's point of view

Kimberly Zarecor will present "Why Ostrava is not Detroit: Communist Legacies in a Post-Commuinist Industrial City" on October 28th at 4:00 p.m. in 710 Social Sciences. Sponsored by the Center for Austrian Studies and the Department of Geography, the University of Pittsburgh Press, and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Professor Zarecor's book, Manufacturing a Socialist Modernity: Housing in Czechoslovakia, 1945-1960, was published under the auspices of the Mellon Slavic Studies Initiative, a collaborative effort of the University of Wisconsin Press, University of Pittsburgh Press, and Northwestern University Press with funding from the Mellon foundation.


Post Doc Opportunity

It looks like prize winners are trending. Former R. John Rath Prize winner Matthew Rampley has alerted us to two postoctoral opportunites at the University of Birmingham, England, UK.

The Department of Art History and Visual Studies is seeking to appoint two postdoctoral research associates to assist Prof. Matthew Rampley to complete the research project Promoting National and Imperial and Identities: Museums in Austria-Hungary 1864-1918, funded by the Leverhulme Trust.

Based in Birmingham, the research fellow positions are full-time appointments for 3 years and are available from January 2015. For more info., go here.

We Have Winners!

CAS Book Prize: Dominique Kirchner Reill, Nationalists Who Feared the Nation (Stanford University Press, 2012).

cover for Nationalists Who Feared the Nation



"Dominique Kirchner Reill’s Nationalists Who Feared the Nation manages the exceedingly difficult feat of challenging existing paradigms of the most studied theme in Habsburg history: nationalism... The book is striking for the originality of its sources, the clarity of its argument, and its elegant and lucid prose."





Honorable mention: Thomas Ort, Art and Life in Modernist Prague (Palgrave MacMillan, 2013).

CAS Dissertation Prize: Anita Kurimay, “Sex in the ‘Pearl of the Danube’: The History of Queer Life, Love, and Its Regulation in Budapest, 1873-1941.” History, Rutgers University, 2012.

Honorable Mention: Svetlana Frunchak, “The Making of Soviet Chernivitsi: National Re-unification, Historical Memory, and the Fate of Jewish Chernowitz in Post-War Ukraine.” History, University of Toronto, 2013.

Congratulations to the winners and to the runners up. Also many thanks to dissertation prize judges Nancy Wingfield (chair), Jill Massino, and Naomi Hume, and book prize judges Scott Spector (Chair), Deborah Coen, and Marguerite Ragnow.

For more information on these excellent pieces of scholarship read the encomia here.

Well, now that we have posted our current winners you can get a sense of how vital our support for scholarship is. We would like to do more, and that's where you come in. We could use your financial assistance and vision to expand our support for scholars from every career stage. Please contact Eva Widder <>. She'd love to listen to your plans for involvement with this and other projects!

Habsburg historian wins MacArthur grant

Habsburg historian Tara Zahra, a member of the University of Chicago faculty, has won a $625,000 MacArthur"genius grant." Zahra has a longstanding connection with the Center for Austrian Studies. She has published articles in the Austrian History Yearbook, and she won both the Center's Dissertation Prize (2006) and Book Prize (2010). For a brief story and biography from the MacArthur foundation, click here.

Dean appoints new CAS faculty director

College of Liberal Arts Interim Dean Raymond Duvall has appointed Howard Louthan, professor of history at the University of Florida, as the next permanent faculty director of the Center for Austrian Studies at the University of Minnesota. In addition to his appointment as CAS director, Louthan will be a full professor in the university’s Department of History. (more)

CAS awards $40,000 in faculty research grants

When sufficient funds are available, the Center for Austrian Studies awards grants to University of Minnesota faculty members for research projects. We ask that they partner with a faculty member from a university in Austria or Central Eeurope. CAS facilitates transatlantic cooperation and provides seed money, as European institutions often provide matching funding. This year, two of  the applications were judged to be so outstanding that we awarded half the available grant money to each project.

The first is “FoodShed: Developing a Platform for Curating Shared Stories of Food and Land in Minnesota and Austria.” Valentine Cadieux, an adjunct member of the Departments of Geography and Sociology, William P. Cunningham, professor emeritus with the College of Biological Sciences, and Bernhard Freyer, head of the Division of Organic Farming, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna , will create an online forum for the sharing stories about food and agriculture focusing on efforts to improve agriculture in Minneaota and Austria.

The second is “Shifting perspectives in Europe and Beyond: Individual and Collective Indentities from an Interdisciplinary and Interregional Perspective.” Patrick McNamara, professor of history, and Roberta Maierhofer, professor of American Studies at the University of Graz, principal investigators. It will develop structures for joint research and teaching between the University of Graz and the University of Minnesota, by creating interdisciplinary workshops and producing a documentary film that is an artistic reflection of the academic work.

"Laughter in the Dark" video link

"Laughter in the Dark: Newly Discovered Songs and Sketches from the Terezín/Theresienstadt Ghetto, 1941-44" was a CAS event held April 4, 2014, at Lloyd Ultan Hall on the U of M campus. Theatre scholar Lisa Peschel gave a talk on cabaret and performance written and performed by prisoners in the Ghetto. This was interspersed with actual material performed by actors Ryan Lindberg and Emily Zimmer, with musical accompaniment by Peter Vitale. Vitale was also music director and Hayley Finn was director. TheEuropean Studies Consortium, the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, and the Center foir Jewish Studies were cosponsors. You can watch a video of the event by clicking on this link.

Broadcasts of "Food, Fuel, and Climate Change"

Upcoming public television broadcasts of the documentary based upon the Center's 2008 public forum (principal cosponsor: Horst M. Rechelbacher Foundation) will occur on the statewide MN Channel, with affiliates in the Twin Cities, Duluth/Superior, Appleton, Austin/Rochester, Bemidji/Brainerd, and Fargo/Moorhead. You can now find the dates of upcoming broadcasts online.

The program is also archived at the Minnesota Video Vault. You may watch the program on your computer at your convenience.