Care – Work – Technique. Poetologies of Seafaring in the 19th Century

What stories are told? Where are they told, how are they told and by whom? The research project at the DSM takes up these questions when it examines the history of seafarers and coastal communities in the 19th century and asks about their worries and their work, which were significantly influenced by the techniques of their time.

Using the example of the NDL shipping lines in colonial and imperial times, the cultural techniques of knowledge production at sea, i.e. the way in which knowledge was produced on and with the ship as a medium of experience, are examined.

The project also examines the violent and colonial entanglements of Northern Europe with the Global South.  For the supposed history of progress in modernity would not have taken place without the care and invisible work of the people and machines on deck, as well as the exploitation of the people dependent on the sea. Thus, the Janus face of history is particularly distinct at sea.


Lotte Warnsholdt

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