Metamorphoses of Violence: A History of the Prison in West Germany

Date / time: 4 November, 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

Metamorphoses of Violence: A History of the Prison in West Germany

GHIL Lecture by PD Dr Annelie Ramsbrock (Potsdam) in co-operation with the Faculty of History, University of Oxford

How did West Germany try to contain state violence against prisoners from the late 1960s onwards, and even to present prisons as institutions that reflected the paradigm of liberalization? To what extent did ideas and perceptions of legitimate and illegitimate violence change? A number of prison scandals led to increased sensitivity in media coverage and in politics regarding acts of violence in prisons. These were countered by new ‘social rehabilitation’ approaches, with limited success. Looking at prison reform in West Germany, the lecture will focus on violence as a problem in processes of creating social order.

Annelie Ramsbrock is a Research Associate at the Leibniz Centre for Contemporary History in Potsdam. She received her doctorate from the Free University of Berlin and was Visiting Professor of Modern European History at the University of Göttingen. She is the author of The Science of Beauty: Culture and Cosmetics in Modern Germany, 1750–1930 (2015) and Geschlossene Gesellschaft: Das Gefängnis als Sozialversuch—eine bundesdeutsche Geschichte (2020).


Please register for this online event using the following link (this will take you to Eventbrite):