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Project Collaborator

Jennifer Allen

Associate Professor of History Yale University


Photo by Annette Hornischer, American Academy in Berlin

Jennifer Allen is an associate professor of modern European history at Yale University. Her research and teaching focus on the history of modern Germany with an emphasis on cultural history, the theories and practices of memory, counterculture and grassroots activism, and environmentalism. Her first book, Sustainable Utopias: The Art and Politics of Hope in Germany (Harvard University Press, 2022), charts Germany’s postwar efforts to revitalize the concept of utopia. She is currently working on a new book project, "Insurance Against Total Destruction: A Postwar History of German Plans to Save the World," that analyzes postwar German efforts to archive the raw materials needed to rebuild national and international cultures after total catastrophe. Allen’s other writing has appeared in the Journal of Modern History, Central European History, German History, Journal of Urban History, and H-Diplo. Her research has been supported by, among others, Project House Europe and the Rachel Carson Center at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, the Center for Contemporary History in Potsdam, the Volkswagen and Mellon Foundations, the American Academy in Berlin, the Institute for Contemporary History in Munich, and DAAD. She received her PhD in 2015 from the University of California, Berkeley.


Ewa Faryaszewska, Old Town Warsaw, August 1944, Agfacolor film, Warsaw Museum. Faryaszweska, an art student, took this color photograph shortly before her death while working to preserve cultural monuments during the Warsaw Uprising.

Histories of Culture in Disastrous Times

Project Team:

2023 – 2025