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European Research Council Awarded Philology Professor Joachim Küpper of Freie Universität 2.4 Million Euros

Funded Project "Early Modern European Drama and the Cultural Net" Selected from Nearly 1600 Proposals

№ 329/2009 from Nov 23, 2009

The philologist, Professor Dr. Joachim Küpper from Freie Universität Berlin, has been granted funding in the amount of 2.4 million euros from the European Research Council (ERC) for the project "Early Modern European Drama and the Cultural Net." The research project, to be funded with an ERC Advanced Investigator Grant, aims to work out a comprehensive analysis of early Western drama, considered to be the first mass media phenomenon in history. In addition, the explanatory power of the metaphor of the "cultural network" will be investigated. Küpper’s project was selected from 1584 proposals and as one of 335 in the humanities and social sciences.

Over a period of five years, the funding will be used to build an international team of young and advanced researchers to study, under the guidance of Professor Küpper, European drama and theater of the early modern period as the first mass medium in history. In addition, the interaction with other cultures, such as with Japan and with India, will be investigated. During this period Küpper will write a book dealing with the issue of how cultural exchange processes differ from economic and political processes. The hypothesis here is the idea that art and culture are open networks.

Joachim Küpper, born in 1952, has been teaching at the Institute of Romance Languages and Literature and the Peter Szondi Institute of Comparative Literature, both at Freie Universität Berlin, since 2000. In 1987 he received the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Prize for his research and in 2001 the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize. His research interests include European literature from the Middle Ages to the 19th century, the theory of literature, and the comparison of the arts.

The Advanced Investigator Grants of the European Research Council (ERC) are intended to support established researchers to achieve outstanding and innovative basic research. In this round of calls the ERC supports researchers working at European institutions with about 490 million euros.

Further Information

Prof. Dr. Joachim Küpper
Freie Universität Berlin
Institute of Romance Languages and Literatures
Peter Szondi Institute of Comparative Literature
Tel.: +49 (0)30 / 838-51192