Prof. Cornel Zwierlein
RUB » Institute of History » Environmental History

Profile of Research and Teaching

Early modern and environmental history are two fields which can be combined very well in research and teaching as has been done in Bochum since 2008. From 2013 to 2015 (winter term) Zwierlein was on leave from teaching thanks to a senior research fellowship funded by the Gerda-Henkel-Stiftung (m4human) and the European Commission (FP 7-Marie Curie actions) at Harvard University / Cambridge/Mass. The book, a fourth scientific monograph, written during that stage has the title ´Imperial Unknowns. The French and British Empires in the Mediterranean, 1650-1750´ and has been published with Cambridge University Press (late Fall 2016). In February and April 2015 two conferences at Harvard and at the German Historical Institute in Paris, financed by the Harvard History and German departments, the German Science foundation, the GHI Paris and the Gerda-Henkel-foundation were embedding the questions and topics of the book into a larger Framework of a history of ignorance(s) in late medieval and early modern times. Cf. under ´Projects´. The contributions to the conference have been published with Brill as ´The Dark Side of Knowledge. Histories of Ignorance, 1400 to 1800 (Leiden, Brill: 2016). Teaching at the Ruhr-University was resumed within winter term 2015/16. Unfortunately, the History Department of Ruhr-University decided to combine rather Early Modern and Gender History, so, during the stay abroad, an application to the then to be refilled chair was not possible. Other money was to be invested into new untenured w1-professorships. Therefore this w1-professorship, the only one with that profile in Germany, was left to expiration. Fortunately, all three PhD students supervised by Zwierlein got a good start into the job market, Eleonora Rohland on a w1-professorship with tenure track (Bielefeld), Magnus Ressel on a position as wiss. Assistant at Frankfurt University and Rebecca Knapp in preparatory service for work in the archives. Due to his Lehrbefugnis (Habilitation), acquired in 2011/13, Cornel Zwierlein remains attached to the department without payment as long as there is no call to a permanent position at another university. Currently he is financed by a w2-Fellowship at the Max-Weber-Kolleg Erfurt. After that, thanks to three very generous positive reviewers, he will be financed by the German Science Foundation at the University of Bamberg (Heisenberg-Fellowship 2018-2021/ev. 2023). He is unfortunately not implied in any collaborative research project of the Ruhr-University Bochum, as for instance in the Center for Mediterranean Studies of which he was a founding member and to which he had contributed, as long as it had been financed by the BMBF, together with Magnus Ressel, with the DFG-grant ´Risk Taming in Early Modern History´. He is currently editing a volume with Brill on ´Fruits of migration. Heterodox Italian migrants and Central European Culture 1550-1620´ and on a translation of the second 2011 book ´The tamed Prometheus´ (to be published with West Virginia University Press). At the same time the new Heisenberg project is on the way with several smaller contributions clearing the path to a new monograph (title of the Heisenberg-Project: Close Distance. A History of Knowledge of European Merchant Colonies in the Levant, seventeenth to nineteenth century").


Roxana Breitenbach
Room GA 4/147
Phone: 0234 / 32-23992