Public Lecture on War Neurosis in Medical Cinematography


A public lecture is being offered as part of a conference hosted by the RWTH Institute of Medical History, Theory and Ethics on the topic of traumatized soldiers and the cultural differences in seeing the causal connection between trauma and war.


On Thursday, September 26, 2019, Professor Julia Barbara Köhne will give a lecture in German on the topic of "the war hysteria suffered by soldiers through the lens of European neuropsychiatric cinematography, 1916–1918." Köhne is a professor at the Institute for the History and Theory of Culture at Humboldt Universität Berlin and a private lecturer for "Contemporary History and Cultural History" and "Film and Media Studies" at the University of Vienna. The public lecture is part of the conference entitled "Krank vom Krieg - Umgangsweisen und kulturelle Deutungsmusters eines Zusammenhangs von der Antike bis zur Gegenwart", taking place in Aachen from September 26 to 28, 2019.

During the war years 1916 to 1918, a relatively new visualization technique was increasingly used in military medical facilities and neuropsychiatric clinics in German-speaking, British, French and Italian countries: medical cinematography. The phenomenon of the so-called "war hysteria" or "war neurosis" among soldiers and officers, which occurred on a massive scale, was "filmed" by military psychiatrists. In using a select cinematic narrative style, the films suggested that the symptoms of the patients could be made to disappear with the "right" form of treatment, which in reality rarely succeeded.

The lecture starts at 6:30 pm in lecture hall H03, at the C.A.R.L. lecture hall complex, Claßenstraße 11. All interested are welcome to attend. Admission is free of charge; registration is not necessary.

Source: Press and Communications