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PhD Grants@Max Planck Institute
Max Planck Institute, Germany

Scholarship / Financial aid: PhD grants offered

Date: 2 years, with the possibility of two six-month extensions

Deadline: 7 May 2012

Open to: applicants with a Master degree in Social Anthropology

Announcement follows

Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology
The International Max Planck Research School for ‘Anthropology, Archaeology and History of Eurasia’ (IMPRS ANARCHIE), a cooperation between the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology and the Martin Luther University, Halle-Wittenberg, offers:

PhD Grants starting 1 October 2012.


The aim of ANARCHIE is to renew transdisciplinary agendas in fields where socio-cultural anthropologists, archaeologists, and historians have much to gain from cross-fertilisation. The designated priority themes include collective identifications, religion and ritual, and economic and demographic causation. Students will obtain their doctorate in one of the three disciplines, but will participate in a common programme organised jointly by social anthropologists (Department II “Resilience and Transformation in Eurasia” of the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology), historians (the Institutes for History and for Classical Studies of the Martin Luther University, Halle-Wittenberg), and archaeologists (Institute for Art History and European Archaeology of the Martin Luther University, Halle-Wittenberg). ANARCHIE is embedded in two major Graduate Schools of the Martin Luther University, “Society
and Culture in Motion” and “Enlightenment, Religion and Knowledge”, and also in the University’s encompassing International Graduate Academy.

See Appendices below for more detail concerning each discipline.
Applicants should make their primary discipline clear in their proposal.
If shortlisted, they may be invited to revise it to fit in better with the overall profile of ANARCHIE and the expertise available to provide supervision.

The PhD Grants are generally awarded for 2 years, with the possibility of two six-month extensions. Workplace for successful candidates is Halle/Saale (except when undertaking field or archival research elsewhere, the costs of which will be covered).

The Max Planck Society is committed to raising the proportion of women in under- represented fields; we thus explicitly encourage applications by women. Individuals with disabilities will be given priority, provided they have equal qualifications.

There is no application form. Applicants should send the following documentation:
-cover letter
- CV, including list of publications
- short (no more than two pages) summary of the research proposed, which should demonstrate clear links both to the applicant’s previous work and qualifications and to the IMPRS ANARCHIE
- photocopies of university degrees
- names of two referees, whom we may contact

Final selection will be made following interviews at a date yet to be arranged. Please send applications to the following address by 7 May 2012:

Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology Personnel Administration
P. O. Box 11 03 51 D – 06017 Halle/Saale
Germany or email to:

For further information about the Institute please visit:

Informal enquiries concerning the positions may be directed to Prof. Chris Hann (


HISTORY (Ancient History; Early Modern History; Eastern European History; Social and Economic History)
The research school aims to explore long-term processes of the construction of historical spaces in view of three interconnected topics: the role of politics and domination, of religion, and of systems of social (also economic and demographic) inequality. The first group of researchers is to study the complex of politics and domination. The other topics will be explored by later groups of PhD candidates. The PhD projects now invited should study the political self-image of social groups and societies, in particular concerning political decision-making and domination as well as the construction of awareness for a common past. Furthermore, we invite projects exploring transnational and trans-societal concepts of space and domination and the ensuing political consequences (concepts of kingdom or empire, civilisation concepts, etc.). Projects examining connections between these fields and religion or social inequality are also welcome.

Among colleagues participating most actively in ANARCHIE are Michael G. Müller (East European History, 16th to 19th centuries), Andreas Pečar (Early Modern European History; intellectual history and 'new political history'), Georg Fertig (Economic History and Historical Demography in transnational contexts, 18th to 20th centuries) and Christian Mileta (Ancient History, with special emphasis on the political, social and cultural evolution of the Ancient World).

SOCIAL ANTHROPOLOGY The cumulative development of ANARCHIE envisages an initial cohort which will concentrate on questions of politics, power and domination, and the construction and maintenance of collective identities. We are particularly interested in linking longue durée historical analysis to wider intellectual debates and contested concepts in the historical social sciences such as culture, civilization and empire. The Department “Resilience and Transformation in Eurasia” headed by Chris Hann has particular strengths in eastern Europe, the Russian Federation and Central Asia (including Xinjiang). Graduate supervision will be offered primarily by Hann and by Dittmar Schorkowitz, who heads the Focus Group “Historical Anthropology in Eurasia”. The main current project of this Group is a comparative investigation of relations between ethnic minorities and the state with reference to continental and overseas colonialism in Russia, China and parts of mainland Southeast Asia. The expertise of the Department currently stretches also to Japan (Christoph Brumann), Southeast Asia (Kirsten Endres), the Turkic-speaking world and other regions of Europe. Methods and time-frame are very open: we are interested in anthropological approaches to the dynamics of the Eurasian landmass between the ancient times and experiences of Marxist-Leninist-Maoist socialism in the twentieth century.

ARCHAEOLOGY (Prehistoric archaeology, Classical archaeology, Archaeology of the Middle Ages and the early modern era)
In the first phase of ANARCHIE we are particularly keen to develop projects investigating identities, identifications and self-perceptions of communities in the Ancient World. Proposals addressing trade relations, economic interaction and supra-regional networks of communication are particularly encouraged, the goal being to assess whether and to what extent such networks promote the mobility of particular groups, and what consequences this has for self-identification. The time frame extends between the Minoan and Byzantine eras. François Bertemes is currently paying particular attention to issues of this kind in the eastern Aegean (especially the Dodekanes Islands and the adjacent Turkish coast) during the first half of the second millennium BC. He also has wider interests in prehistory and early complex societies.

Other active colleagues will include Helga Bumke (Classical
Archaeology), who has particular interests in ethnic identity in ancient Greece, its recognition in material culture, and the role of religion in its definition; and Hans-Georg Stephan, who works on the development of settlements and cultural landscapes in Central Europe (c. 500-1850 AD), with particular interests in cultural change, trade and commerce.


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