Research project History Masterclass

Kamerun 1914. Map of M. Moisel (Extract)
  • 11. October 2019

  • Provenance research, Colonial legacy, Reappraisal of the colonial past

  • Yaoundé (Cameroon)

The Goethe-Institut is preparing young Cameroonian historians and other experts for research on the files of the German colonial administration housed in the National Archives in Yaoundé.
By offering a "History Masterclass", the Goethe-Institut Cameroon intends to prepare young historians and other experts to conduct research on the files of the German Colonial Administration which are available in the National Archives in Yaoundé.
In the master class the Cameroonian scholars receive German lessons, knowledge of reading old German manuscripts, overview lectures on colonial history and work on a specific topic which they submit in advance. In cooperation with Yaounde I University, the project will be expanded to include research fellowships for doctoral students.
As a prerequisite for the scientific evaluation of the German collections, the German Federal Archives, together with the Goethe-Institut Cameroon, are organizing for the preservation of the 7,000 files of the German Colonial Administration, which were previously neglected and left to decay, and which are still stored in the Cameroonian National Archives. Since March 2017, the German collections have not only been physically secured, but also viewed, rearranged, registered and archived. The files are gradually being digitized and made available online as part of the Federal Archives which can be accessed at the Goethe-Institut in Cameroon.

Participating experts:

Dr. Esther Olembe, director of the National Archives of Cameroon
Dr. Wolfgang Stein, former director of the Federal Archives

Relevant links:
Course offered by the Goethe-Institut on reading old German manuscripts

Files of the Federal Archives of the Federal Republic of Germany
Relevant article (German only):

Forced Decolonisation: By signing the Treaty of Versaille, Germany forfeited its colonies


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