As part of the lecture series “A Century of Diplomatic Relations from a Cultural-Historical Perspective” on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Germany and Estonia, there will be a ZOOM lecture on the subject of “My life … In the labyrinths of history: World War II in Estonian Life Stories ” on Tuesday, January 18, 2022, at 6.00 pm. The lecture will be held by Tiina Anna Kirss.
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Life story collection campaigns have been carried out by memory institutions in Estonia from the 1990s till the present, resulting in several monumental publications and a plethora of research. A major focus of the campaigns has been on remembering World War II, though generational shifts have been marked over the last ten years.. Focusing closely on three published collections, this lecture will examine the remembering of the German occupation in Estonian life stories, leading to more complex questions concerning the function of life stories as sources, public discourse, institutionalised memory and international relations.
Tiina Ann Kirss holds a Ph.D in comparative literature from the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor). Since 2006 she has been living, conducting research and teaching in Estonia, as Professor of Estonian Literature at the University of Tartu and Professor of Cultural Theory at Tallinn University. Her current employment is at the University of Tartu and the Estonian Literary Museum. Her main research interests are the European historical novel, life stories and autobiographical sources such as diaries and correspondences; trauma studies, women`s and gender studies.