15/11/18 – HCA Spring Academy on American History, Culture & Politics

spring school HCA

The Spring Academy on American History, Culture & Politics is an annual, one-week interdisciplinary conference for Ph.D. candidates at the Heidelberg Center for American Studies (HCA). The conference is targeted at at Ph.D. candidates working in different fields of American studies.What, when & where

Every year the HCA invites twenty outstanding Ph.D. students from diverse academic disciplines to Heidelberg to present their dissertation projects in the field of American Studies. The presentations are thematically arranged into ten two-person panels. Participants are requested to prepare a twenty-minute presentation of their research projects. Each presentation is followed by a forty-minute discussion session. The participants of the HCA Spring Academy greatly benefit from the insights generated by this cross-disciplinary and intercultural dialogue.

Possible topics for discussion are American literature and culture, U.S. history, domestic and foreign policy, geography, religion, and musicology as well as economic and sociological issues, and aspects of jurisprudence. Race, class, and gender are frequently employed analytical categories. This diversity of disciplines and approaches enables students from different academic backgrounds to become part of a unique international intellectual network of young and aspiring researchers which has been successfully established by the HCA over the past years and is continuously expanded.

The Spring Academy takes place in the HCA’s Curt and Heidemarie Engelhorn Palais, which is centrally located in Heidelberg’s old town. The more than 300-year-old baroque townhouse affords ideal conditions for the conference, offering an atrium and two well-equipped lecture rooms.

Deadline & how to apply

Deadline is November 15, 2018. Use online application form.

Who can apply?
  • Ph.D. candidates from all over the world whose project is in one of the different fields of American Studies (History, Literature, Cultural Studies, Law, Political Science, Religious Studies, Economics, Musicology, and Geography) may apply to the HCA Spring Academy.
  • Among other topics, participants have presented projects on gender, identity, immigration, international relations, the Cold War, slavery, literature, and the history of sports.
  • Though Ph.D. students in all stages of progress can benefit from the Spring Academy, we especially recommend it to Ph.D. students who have already done their research and are at the beginning of their writing phase as they can profit the most from the conference.
How to apply?
  • In order to apply for the 2019 Spring Academy, please fill out and submit our online application form. The form will be available on August 15, 2018. Applications will be accepted until November 15, 2018.
  • Selections will be made in January 2019.
  • You do not need to submit a recommendation form, unless you are also applying for our Travel Fund (see below).
Travel Fund
  • We have a small Travel Fund available to cover travel expenses for participants registered and residing in developing and soft-currency countries.
  • Scholarship applicants will need to document the necessity for financial aid and explain how they plan to cover any potentially remaining expenses.
  • If you are applying for our Travel Fund, please download this form and mail it to your doctoral advisor. Completed forms need to be submitted by your doctoral advisor to springacademy@hca.uni-heidelberg.de.

Other info, Links & conditions

The Spring Academy 2019 will be facilitated by Ms. Spring Academy, Dr. Dorothea Fischer-Hornung, together with Dr. Wilfried Mausbach as Mr. Spring Academy. Franziska Pentz and Lara Smail are in charge of the Spring Academy and can be reached at springacademy@hca.uni-heidelberg.de.

The HCA Spring Academy is hosted in cooperation with John Deere. John Deere, one of the oldest industrial companies in the United States, is the world’s leading producer of farm equipment. It is also a major producer of construction and forestry equipment and lawn care products, as well as a provider of financial solutions and health care services.


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