Berlin: A Prussian Legacy
Monday, June 24, 2019 - 6:45 p.m.
Once a town in an insignificant area on the Baltic Sea, around the early Middle Ages Königsberg (now Kaliningrad, Russia) began its transformation into the nucleus of powerful Prussia, the leading German state of the 17th through 19th centuries. Centered around its capital, Berlin, this rising power came to dominate the political, intellectual, and cultural life of what eventually became the unified German state in 1871—until its supremacy ended with the country’s defeat in World War I.
Cultural historian Ursula Rehn Wolfman traces this fascinating historical evolution through the expression of Prussian culture in Berlin’s architecture, including the famous Gendarmenmarkt with French and German cathedrals and Frederick the Great’s Sans Souci Palace; in the collections of extraordinary art museums; and through its intellectual influence, with many of the greatest minds—such as Hegel, Fichte, Marx, and Einstein—attracted to the city’s prestigious Humboldt University.
World Art History Certificate elective: Earn 1/2 credit
S. Dillon Ripley Center
1100 Jefferson Dr SW
Metro: Smithsonian (Mall exit)