The social changes that went along with the political upheaval of 1989/90 in the countries of state socialism were not limited to the political system, economic structures or social conditions. The late phase and the end of state socialism were marked by a far-reaching transformation of popular culture, with global cultural changes becoming an important driver of the post-communist transformation. The conference brings together researchers from the broad field of pop history to examine the overarching trends of fundamental socio-cultural change that followed the political upheaval of 1989/90. The conference will take place from 15 to 17 November 2023 at Flutgraben Berlin (Am Flutgraben 3, 12435 Berlin, Germany).

Conference language is English, the book presentation by Jens Balzer on 15 Nov. is in German.
The Participation in the book presentation and conference is free of charge.


Day 1 (15 Nov. 2023)

18:00 Book presentation Jens Balzer: „No Limit. Die Neunziger - das Jahrzehnt der Freiheit“

Day 2 (16 Nov. 2023)

Welcome and Introduction

9:00 – 9:30      Jürgen Danyel (ZZF Potsdam): Pop in Transition. Perspectives on post-Communist Popular Culture

Panel 1: Pop between Westernization and National Identity I

Moderation: Michael Homberg (ZZF Potsdam / University of Potsdam)

9:30 – 10:00     John David Vandevert (Uppsala University): To Be or Not To Be. Russian rap and the pursuit of a post-Soviet “Russianness” from 1991 to 1999

10:00 – 10:30  Claudiu Oancea (NEC, Bucharest): From Fakelore to Ethno-Pop and In-Between. Folk and Pop Music in Late Socialist and post-Socialist Romania

10:30 – 11:00  Maximilian Kreter (HAIT, Dresden): ‘Trabireiter, Goitzsche Front & Weimar’ – Embodying the ‘nOSTalgic nation’? Everyday nationhood in East German ‘German Rock’ from 1994 until 2019

(Break 11:00 – 11:30)

Panel 2: Sex, Body and Gender in post-Communist Popular Culture

Moderation: Frank Bösch (ZZF Potsdam / University of Potsdam)

11:30 – 12:00  Kotryna Bėčiūtė (Vilnius University): Restoration of Independence is Sexy. Changes in Representations of Sexuality and the Body in Lithuanian Popular Culture in the 1990s

12:00 – 12:30  Chang Liu (Heidelberg University): Naked Ambitions: Madonna’s Photobook and the Transformation of Cultural Landscape of post-Mao China

12:30 – 13:00  Juliana Matasova (independent scholar): A Transformational Grammar of Joy. Ukraine and the Women’s Musical Stories of the 1990s

(Lunch break 13:00 – 14:00)

Panel 3: The transition of Music markets

Moderation: Detlef Siegfried (University of Copenhagen)

14:00 – 14:30  Patryk Galuszka (Leuphana University Lüneburg / University of Lodz): From Monopoly to Bankruptcy. The Story of Polskie Nagrania

14:30 – 15:00  Tom Koltermann (ZZF Potsdam): „Those were our Hits“. Marketing Strategies for Socialist Pop Music in Reunified Germany

15:00 – 15:30  Marijana Mitrović (HU, Berlin): Turbofolk Music and the Socio-Economic Changes in Serbia After 1989

(Break 15:30 – 16:00)

Panel 4: Spaces of Change: Club Culture in the 1990th

Moderation: Rüdiger Graf (ZZF Potsdam / HU, Berlin)

16:00 – 16:30  Polina Gundarina (GWZO, Leipzig): Dancing through Transformation. Discotheques and Soviet Houses of Culture After 1991

16:30 – 17:00  Mathieu Guillien (University of Evry, Paris): Why the Berghain is in Berlin

17:00 – 17:30  Tomoko Takaoka (Ryukoku University): Communism Dances! The Transformation of the GDR Disco through the Effects of Gentrification after Reunification

Offer: Guided tour on the history of the building and presentation of the studio house

18:00 – 19.00 Team Flutgraben/Elke Kimmel

Evening event: Party „The Sound of Transformation“

From 19:30

Day 3 (17 Nov. 2023)

Panel 5: Pop between Westernization and National Identity II

Moderation: Kateryna Chernii (ZZF Potsdam)

9:00 – 9:30      Ondřej Daniel (Charles University, Prague) & Katharina Alexi (Leuphana University Lüneburg): Hate Gone Pop. Racism and Popular Musical Memory of the 1990s – a Comparative Study of the former Czechoslovakia and East Germany

9:30 – 10:00    Ekaterina Ganskaya (University of Turin): Sovietwave. the Soundtrack for Communist Nostalgia

10:00 – 10:30  Florian Völker (ZZF Potsdam): Neue (Ost-)Deutsche Härte. Rammsteinʼs re-interpretation of the German

(Break 10:30 – 11:00)

Panel 6: Pop as Memory

Moderation: Thomas Lindenberger (HAIT / TU, Dresden)

11:00 – 11:30  Daria Khokhlova: Generations of Irony and New Sincerity. Case of Russian Pop Music

11:30 – 12:00  Aleš Opekar (CAS, Prague): Museality and historicisation of Czech popular music and its research after 1989

12:00 – 12:30  Alexandra S. Kolesnik (Sorbonne University, Paris / ZZF Potsdam): Musical heritage in Ekaterinburg. Memory of the Sverdlovsk rock club

Round Table: Pop after Communism. Perspectives, Blind Spots and Open Questions

12:30 – 13:15 Moderation: Nikolai Okunew (ZZF Potsdam)

Podium: Juliane Fürst (ZZF Potsdam), Armin Siebert (Eastblok Music), Polly McMichael (University of Nottingham), Jürgen Danyel (ZZF Potsdam)