The Jewish Museum Berlin's Fellowship Program
With the inauguration of the Academy, the Jewish Museum has launched a new Fellowship Program for research projects involving Jewish history and culture, and the better appreciation of social and cultural diversity in Germany. We select scholars who have earned extraordinary respect in their particular fields. The first fellow of the two-year research program is Dr. Karen Körber, a sociologist.
Karen Körber is currently teaching and investigating the subjects of gender and migration at the Department of Social Sciences at the Goethe-Universität Frankfurt. She studied sociology, political science, and psychology at the Universität Bremen and the Free University Berlin, and was a DAAD fellow at Columbia University, New York. She has been a research associate at the Institute for Sociology at Freie Universität Berlin, and received her doctorate from the Humboldt Universität Berlin with a dissertation on her field study of Russian-Jewish immigrants in East Germany in the 1990s. At the Fachhochschule Erfurt, she followed up with a study on the effect of the migration movement on Germany’s Jewish communities. From 2008 to 2011 she conducted research at the Institute for European Ethnology/Cultural Studies of the Philipps-Universität Marburg for the project "Transnational Familiarity." Her studies investigated the changing role of family under the present conditions of increasing global migration (cf. "Imagined Families in Mobile Worlds", edited by Karen Körber and Ina Merkel, Special Issue of Ethnologia Europaea, Journal of European Ethnology, vol. 42:2, 2012).
Besides her dissertation, "Juden, Russen, Emigranten. Identitätskonflikte jüdischer Einwanderer in einer ostdeutschen Stadt" (Jews, Russians, Émigrés: the Identity Conflicts of Jewish Immigrants in an East German Town), which was published by Campus Verlag in 2005, Karen Körber has published numerous articles dealing with, among other things, questions of Jewish identity, the construction of ethnicity in the context of tension between Diaspora and nation state, as well as changes in the remembrance of the Holocaust following Russian-Jewish immigration to Germany. She is particularly interested in the empirical analysis of conflict surrounding the interpretation and significance of cultural identity. With its Fellowship Program, the Jewish Museum Berlin supports Körber’s research on the prevailing reality of second-generation Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe.