Saturday, November 15, 2008

2 PhD Scholarship On Cultural Transfer Asia-europe

University of Heidelberg
2 PhD Scholarships
Cultural Transfer As A Factor Of State Building In The Early Modern Period

The Cluster of Excellence "Asia and Europe in a Global Context. Shifting Asymmetries in Cultural Flows" at the University of Heidelberg is offering 2 PhD scholarships (2 + 1 years) within the Junior Research Group (JRG) "Cultural Transfer as a Factor of State Building"

The PhD students are expected to develop a PhD project within the JRG's research focus on cultural transfer as a factor of state building in the Early Modern period. While the modern state used to be considered a genuine European phenomenon, the project is based on the assumption that cultural contact is always accompanied by cultural flow and that the creation of the modern state was part of changing asymmetries. Starting point is the observation that Early Modern Europeans engaged in Asia experienced elaborate systems of governance and administration. The JRG will study the impact of this experience on the development of state building processes on several levels: How did Europeans and Asians communicate, and how did they perceive and translate cultural differences? Can traces of an intended transfer in the structures of governance and administration be found in European and Asian political practice? Further information on the Cluster can be found at, for further information on the JRG' research focus please contact Antje Flüchter

There are three possible perspectives on the topic:

1. Asian trade cities: A first doctoral sub-project is to focus on cultural interaction in Asian trade centres (i.e. Batavia) from Asian and European perspectives. The project aims to contrast and complement Asiatic perspectives and Asiatic narratives on changes in Europe with the complementary view from Europe.
2. Military as an object of cultural transfer: A second project concerns the role of military activity, both in the process of state building, and as object of cultural transfer. The analysis of military technology, and the role of European experts in Asian armies are to be used as focus points, allowing to gain a better understanding of impacts of the military sector on state building processes.
3. Court life and transcultural diplomacy: This project is to ask how diplomatic contacts where integrated in the communicative structures of European and Asian courts, and how transcultural contacts and perceptions generated knowledge that shaped the developing diplomatic systems.

The PhD-Candidates are encouraged and expected to pursue independent research and will participate in the meeting of our research group, where we are going to develop a comparative theoretical and conceptional base for the project. Applicants are required to hold a Masters degree or equivalent. They are expected to possess language skills according to the project needs (and to have experience of historical methods; knowledge of methods and theories in Transcultural Studies and Cultural History is desired.

The PhD candidates are invited to use the research environment of the Heidelberg Cluster of Excellence. The PhD projects will be supervised by the JRG leader and the responsible Cluster member. Every PhD candidate is offered a tax-free scholarship of 1000 Euro monthly and access to travel funds, technical equipment and institutional support. The scholarships will be awarded for two years with a possible renewal for another year after successful evaluation. The positions available are open to both EU and overseas students. Applications from women, ethnic minorities and individuals with disabilities are encouraged. The PhD scholarships will start on 1st January 2009 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Applicants are asked to submit a CV, copies of university degrees, two letters of recommendation (one of them from the Masters supervisor), and a short PhD project outline of no more than 1000 words in English or German. Electronic applications are welcome. Applications should be submitted by December 10th 2008. Interviews will begin on 15th December 2008 and continue until the positions are filled. Please send your application to: Dr. Antje Flüchter, Brunnenstraße 11, D-48151 Münster,