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David Tompkins

David Tompkins


I specialize in the history of modern Central Europe, and am particularly interested in the relationship between culture and politics. My book Composing the Party Line: Music and Politics in Early Cold War Poland and East Germany appeared with Purdue University Press in 2013, and I have published articles in German History, The Polish Review, and many edited volumes. My current project examines images of the other in the Soviet bloc. At Carleton, I offer a wide range of courses on the history of modern Europe, including seminars on music and politics, visual images and socialism, dictatorships, and the Holocaust.

Education & Professional History

Rice University, BA; Université de Provence (France), licence; Columbia University, MA, PhD.

Assistant Professor of History, University of Tennessee, 2005-2008.

Drushal Distinguished Visiting Assistant Professor of History, The College of Wooster, 2004-2005.

At Carleton since 2008.

Highlights & Recent Activity

Composing the Party Line: Music and Politics in Early Cold War Poland and East Germany (West Lafayette: Purdue University Press, 2013). Open access here.

“The East is Red? Images of China in East Germany and Poland through the Sino-Soviet Split” in Zeitschrift für Ostmitteleuropa-Forschung 62/3 (2013): 393-424.

“Israel as Friend and Foe: Shaping Society through Freund- and Feindbilder in East Germany” in Mary Fulbrook and Andrew I. Port, eds. Becoming East Germans: Socialist Structures and Sensibilities after Hitler (New York: Berghahn Books, 2013).

“Orchestrating Identity: Concerts for the Masses and the Shaping of East German Society” in German History 30/3 (September 2012): 412-427.

“Instrumentalizing Entertainment and Education: Early Cold-War Music Festivals in East Germany and Poland” in Cathleen M. Giustino, Catherine J. Plum, and Alexander Vari, eds. Socialist Escapes: Breaking Away from Ideology and Everyday Routine in Eastern Europe, 1945-1989. New York: Berghahn Books, 2013.

“Sound and a Socialist Identity: Music in the Stalinist GDR.” Florence Feiereisen and Alexandra Merley Hill, eds. Germany in the Loud Twentieth Century. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press, 2011. 111-123.

As Listed on Department Faculty Pages

Profile updated November 8, 2016

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