German-Polish border region 2013

The DAAD-Study Tour 2013 took us to the German-Polish border region.

The tour began in Wrocław, Poland, a city that has long been at the crossroads of Germany and Poland. In Wrocław, we learned about the history of the city and the border region, the effects of Poland’s EU-accession on cross-border relations, and the construction and contestation of national and local history.

In Berlin, we analyzed the German capital as a city of border experiences, concentrating in particular on “Polish Berlin” and other aspects of the multicultural capital. In meetings with scholars, politicians and social activists, we explored questions of migration, border enforcement and exclusion, of peripherality and of everyday racism.

The tour also included day trips to the border region. In Frankfurt/Oder and Słubice we visited the office of city cooperation between the two border towns aswell as the offices of Euroregion Viadrina to learn about the transformation of the border region, cooperation and border control. In Spremberg near Cottbus we visited a lignite surface mine as well as a nearby protest camp to enquire into the pros and cons of this important industry in the German-Polish border region.