Portraitfoto Klaas Anders

Klaas Anders

Contradictory Lifeworlds: The Czechoslovak Exile in Vienna 1968-1989

The PhD project examines contradictory environments in the everyday life of Czechoslovak exiles between 1968 and 1989 in the urban space of Vienna.

The project looks at the period after 1968 and thus accompanies the arrival of the exiles who left Czechoslovakia after the suppression of the Prague Spring in 1968/69 and after the repression against Charter 77 (1977).

The focus is on strategies for coping with everyday life in exile, which the project understands as life in constant contradiction.

The project primarily uses oral history approaches, which are supplemented by selected archival sources.

Research interests

  • Migration history
  • History of late socialism
  • Subcultural History
  • Memory studies


  • Since June 2022
    doctoral fellow at the DFG Research Training Group 2686 Contradiction Studies
  • Since May 2022
    Freelance guide at the memorial site Denkort Bunker Valentin, Bremen-Farge.
  • 2021 – 2022
    Freelance collaborator on the exhibition project: denk.mal Hannoverscher Bahnhof at the Neuengamme concentration camp memorial site.
  • 2021
    Freelance collaborator on the exhibition project Ostwärts in den Westen for the Bremer Bündnis für deutsch-tschechische Zusammenarbeit e.V.
  • 2021
    Internship in the project denk.mal Hannoverscher Bahnhof at the Neuengamme concentration camp memorial site.
  • 2020 – 2021
    Study visit at the Charles University Prague.
  • 2019 – 2020
    Student assistant in research and teaching at the Department of Eastern European History at the University of Hamburg.
  • 2018 – 2021
    M.A. Eastern European Studies (University of Hamburg).
  • Master‘s thesis Der ‚Urstrom der Geschichte‘ fließt durch Prag. Die Flucht von DDR-Bürger*innen über die bundesdeutsche Botschaft in der ČSSR im September 1989 als deutsch-tschechischer Erinnerungsort.
  • 2018 – 2019
    Student Assistant at the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy in Hamburg (IFSH).
  • 2016 – 2017
    Student assistant at the Department of Cultural History of East Central Europe with a focus on Czech history at the University of Bremen.
  • 2014 – 2018
    B.A. History (University of Bremen)
    Bachelor‘s thesis Identität(en) tschechischer und slowakischer Skinheads in der Transformationszeit der ČSSR / ČR.


Talks, Workshops, and Events

  • 06.11.2023
    Moderation of the Panel Discussion Widersprüche der Erinnerungskultur. Die Realität der postmigrantischen Gesellschaft anerkennen? at the globale° – Festival 2023.
  • 10.09.2023
    Exhibition opening Ostwärts in den Westen at Theater am Geländer, Prag.
  • 22.05.2023
    Im Rückblick: Über den Zaun. Panel discussion on the memory of the events of autumn 1989 at the German Embassy in Prague, in the context of the theater “das letzte Kleinod” in Worpswede.
  • 17.01.2023
    Talk Alltag und Netzwerke des tschechoslowakischen Exils in Wien nach 1968 at the Kolloquium Abteilung für osteuropäischen Geschichte, CAU Kiel.
  • 29.11.2022
    Talk Alltag und Netzwerke des tschechoslowakischen Exils in Wien nach 1968, Kolloquium zur Osteuropäischen Geschichte, Forschungsstelle Osteuropa Bremen.
  • 04.11.2022
    Organization and moderation of a reading and discussion from the book Nullerjahre with Hendrik Bolz at the globale° – Festival 2022.
sustained engagement

“The history of Western philosophy can be understood as a sustained engagement with contradiction.”

Norman Sieroka
l’illusion d’une unité

“Foucault speaks of contradiction as l’illusion d’une unité.”

Ingo H. Warnke
Bhabha on enlightenment and coloniality

“Homi Bhabha says about the contradiction between the ideals of the enlightenment, claims to democracy and solidarity and simultaneous colonization and ongoing coloniality: ‘That ideological tension, visible in the history of the West as a despotic power, at the very moment of the birth of democracy and modernity, has not been adequately written in a contradictory and contrapuntal discourse of tradition.’”

Kerstin Knopf
name contradiction

“Contradiction becomes real where someone names contradiction.”

Ingo H. Warnke
hierarchy of norms

“If social contradictions are reflected in law, law cannot form a hierarchy of norms free of contradictions.”

Andreas Fischer-Lescano