6th Congress on Polish Studies

Dresden University of Technology , March 14 – 17, 2024

Framework topic

Upheavals – New Beginnings


Call for Papers / Call for Panels
(for download)

The sixth congress on Polish Studies in March 2024 in Dresden will again offer scholars focusing on Poland the opportunity to present their current research, to network and to discuss the state of Poland-related research. The upcoming congress is framed by the topic „Upheavals – New Beginnings / Aufbrüche – Umbrüche / Przełomy – przeobrażenia“.

Both destructive and creative ruptures in history and present have affected Poland, like its neighbours. Diverse modes of reaction to these constellations of challenges for the individual and the community have developed in history, literature, culture, but also in politics, economy, and society. Thus, narratives full of tension have emerged. Their formation as well as their modifications on the national and international level of perception and negotiation must be analysed and understood, and often translated, in order to strengthen and further develop the constructive dialogue between Poland, Germany and Europe. In this context, the Second World War, which began with the German invasion of Poland, undoubtedly represents the historically most brutal rupture in German-Polish relations. The most recent of these upheavals is currently taking place against the backdrop of Russia's war against Ukraine.

How have these disruptions been translated into historical narratives and cultural practices? How do they influence political action? What steps entail disruptions, what shadows do they cast ahead? How are they experienced? How does one keep up with the past in Poland when periods of upheaval seem to invite ideological influence on the discourse? Has Polish society and culture, its economy and/or legal system developed a specific resilience or compensatory capacity in response to disruptive constellations? Can the Polish way of dealing with disruptions be brought into a comparative dimension as opportunities for change? Or are Poles - as legionaries, partisans or "invisible" Polish neighbours in Germany - rather themselves drivers and actors of disruptive processes? Analyses of attributions, framings, but also exemplary probes on these questions are meant to contribute from all disciplines to the framework topic of the congress and place it in transnational or comparative contexts.

This always includes ethical questions, especially those concerning the role and/or responsibility of the humanities and social sciences in (war) crises. How does science react to such geopolitical disruptions? On the other hand, how does it prepare societies for anticipated crises or even - in political-ideological servitude - contribute to their occurrence? What do the arts have to say about all this?

In this respect, the framework topic of the congress also takes up the outbreak of the Russian-Ukrainian war in February 2022, with which the history of wars, violent takeovers of power and land occupations in Eastern Europe is to be continued. Postcolonial studies, which for over twenty years have also been applied to Eastern European, especially Polish, Ukrainian, and Russian history, politics, and culture, take on new relevance when geopolitical asymmetries, cultural hegemonies, ethnic cleansing, and appropriation/destruction of the cultural heritage of neighbouring countries come into focus. The often ambivalent position of Poland and Ukraine between East and West, which shaped their colonial histories, is reinterpreted, especially as "emergencies” in Europe resulting from invasion and violence are also linked to mass migration.


The Sixth Congress on Polish Studies offers the opportunity to establish and maintain contacts across the borders of disciplines and German-speaking countries, to develop projects and to learn about the status quo in Polish Studies. It continues the succession of congresses in Darmstadt 2009, Mainz 2011, Gießen 2014, Frankfurt/Oder 2017, and Halle 2020, each of which was attended by around 300 scholars. Exhibitions by publishers and institutions as well as an accompanying program completes the congress. Conference languages are German, Polish or English.

The Dresden University of Technology, which is organizing this congress together with the German Poland Institute, is closely connected to the framework topic with its excellence measure "TUDiSC" ("TU Disruption and Societal Change Center") . However, as in previous congresses, it is also possible to propose papers or sections that are not closely related to the framework topic, as long as they are of current research relevance.

 Application for lectures and sections

We invite all interested parties to submit proposals for individual lectures or entire sections. They can be oriented towards the framework theme "Upheavals – New Beginnings", but can also deal with another thematic focus, if they are of particular research relevance. Proposals for entire sections usually have a better chance of being included in the congress program.

Individual Presentations: The duration of individual presentations is limited to 25 minutes. The organizers will combine the selected individual presentations into thematic, disciplinary or open sections.

Section Proposals: Section length will be between 90 and 120 minutes. The number of speakers should be three to four; it is recommended to include one commentator to each section and to assemble representatives from more than one scientific site. The organizers reserve the right to amend or modify the selected sections in consultation with the proposers.

Deadline for application for lectures and sections is May 29, 2023. The selection process will be terminated by the end of July 2023.

Application form for a section

Application form for an individual presentation

Application for format "Forum"

In the new format "Forum", suitable topics can be focused on within a time frame of 90 or 120 minutes. After a short input by the organizers and their invited guests, the participants will discuss the chosen topic in a multidisciplinary setting. The congress organizers reserve the right to propose thematic forums by themselves.

Application deadline for "Forums" is September 15, 2023.

Application form for format "Forum"

 Application for format "Intermediate periods“

Under the title "Intermediate periods", half-hour slots are available for project presentations, the presentation of institutions, publications or publication series, for short discussions, etc.

The application deadline for the "Intermediate periods" format is September 15, 2023.

Application form for format "Intermediate periods"

 Application for short project presentations

In addition to longer presentations, we offer - primarily for young scientists - the opportunity for short project presentations in the plenum (approx. 5 minutes).

Deadline for applications for "Short Project Presentations" (incl. poster presentation, if applicable) is December 15, 2023. The selection process of short project presentations will be terminated by the end of January, 2024.

Application form for a short project presentation

 Exhibitors, stands

Exhibitors (institutions, publishers, companies) can present themselves in different ways at the Sixth Congress of Polish Studies. If you are interested, please contact the organizers by January 15, 2024.

 Invitation to congress participation without individual contribution

All those interested in participating without an individual contribution are invited to register at www.polenforschung.de/Anmeldung-Registration/

Registrations will be possible until March 5, 2024. Please note: All registrations are binding and will only become effective after payment of the congress fee. A refund of congress fees is not possible for organizational reasons.


The organizers will assist you in finding overnight accommodations starting in the fall of 2023. All registered persons will receive further information in due time.

 Applications, registrations

Submission of proposals for sections, individual presentations and project presentations as well as contact person for all content-related questions: Deutsches Poleninstitut.

With organizational questions as well as for registration of poster presentations, booths and exhibitions please contact our organization office.

We are looking forward to an exciting and diverse congress!


Funded by:

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Project partners:

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