Wednesday lecture
06 Dec 2023 · 6.30 pm

Andreas Bernard (Leuphana University Lüneburg): Epidemie und Erzählung

Venue: Leibniz-Zentrum für Literatur- und Kulturforschung, Pariser Str. 1, entrance Meierottostr. 8, 10719 Berlin

Lecture by Andreas Bernard on his book Die Kette der Infektionen: Zur Erzählbarkeit von Epidemien seit dem 18. Jahrhundert (The Chain of Infections: On the Narratability of Epidemics since the 18th Century) (S. Fischer 2023)
Respondence: Brigitte Weingart (UdK Berlin), moderation: Katrin Trüstedt (ZfL)

In his most recent book Die Kette der Infektionen (The Chain of Infections), Andreas Bernard argues that the successful battle against epidemics is substantially tied to its narratability. In addition to the medical part of the battle against epidemics—the development of vaccines, the research of immunity—a successful containment also depends on the ways in which they are depicted: events of infection and communication are inextricably intertwined.
Andreas Bernard explores this connection by studying the history of smallpox, influenza, diphtheria, and the AIDS epidemic. After his lecture, Andreas Bernard will discuss the ways in which epidemics are depicted with Brigitte Weingart.

Andreas Bernard teaches cultural studies at the Leuphana University Lünerburg. He also writes for the Süddeutsche Zeitung.

Publications (selection):

  • Das Diktat des Hashtags. Frankfurt a.M.: S. Fischer 2018
  • Komplizen des Erkennungsdienstes: Das Selbst in der digitalen Kultur. Frankfurt a.M.: S. Fischer 2017
  • Kinder machen: Neue Reproduktionstechnologien und die Ordnung der Familie. Frankfurt a.M.: S. Fischer 2014
  • Die Geschichte des Fahrstuhls: Über einen beweglichen Ort der Moderne. Frankfurt a.M.: S. Fischer 2006

Brigitte Weingart is professor for media theory at the Institute of Communication at the Universität der Künste Berlin (UdK).

Publications (selection):

  • Ed.: VIRUS! Mutationen einer Metapher. Bielefeld: transcript 2004 (with Ruth Mayer)
  • Ansteckende Wörter. Repräsentationen von AIDS. Frankfurt a.M.: Suhrkamp 2002

The literary scholar Katrin Trüstedt is the co-coordinator of the program area History of Theory where she is head of the project Politics of Appearing.


Entry is free of charge.


Fig. above: Cover of Andreas Bernard: Die Kette der Infektionen. Frankfurt a.M.: S. Fischer 2023 (excerpt), © S. Fischer Verlage