The Older Woman in West Germany and Britain, 1950s-1980s

Navigating Gender Regimes in History

While post-war social scientists and historians devoted ample time to the study of youth, older demographic groups received comparatively less attention. In contrast, in her Amsterdam German Studies Lecture, Professor Christina von Hodenberg focuses on the agency of older women in post-war West-Germany and Britain.

Much about the social situation and the attitudes of over 60-year old women in the second half of the 20th century remains understudied. Therefore, prof. dr. Christina von Hodenberg explores the lives and practices of older women in post-war West-Germany and Britain. In her lecture she asks: How did older women navigate the gender regimes of their time? What were their strategies of coping with the limits placed on their agency, and how successful were they?

The Amsterdam German Studies Lectures are dedicated to current research on the modern history of Germany and Europe. Several times a year, DIA invites a renowned academic to present their research in a public lecture to a Dutch audience.

About the speakers

Christina von Hodenberg is director of the German Historical Institute in London. Von Hodenberg’s work revolves around generations, gender and the history of emotions in modern Europe. Among other things, she conducted cutting edge research on women as actors in the student revolt of the 1960s. Today she focuses on “ageing” and how historians can approach outdated social science data material as sources.

Bernhard Rieger is a Professor of European History at the institute for History at Leiden University.

Mario Daniels (moderator) is the DAAD-Fachlektor des Duitsland Instituut Amsterdam. He holds a PhD from the University of Tübingen, taught at the Universities of Tübingen and Hannover, and was twice a research fellow at the German Historical Institute in Washington, D.C. From 2015 to 2020 he was the DAAD Visiting Professor at the BMW Center for German and European Studies at Georgetown University. His latest book, co-authored with John Krige, Knowledge Regulation and National Security in Postwar America, was published with University of Chicago Press in April 2022. 

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