Interdisziplinäres Zentrum für die Erforschung der Europäischen Aufklärung

Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg Siegel

Interdisciplinary Centre for European Enlightenment Studies

The IZEA was founded in 1990 as a central scientific institution of the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg. As a research institution for the history of culture and ideas, it explores the foundation of modern Western societies through the study of ideas and cultural patterns developed in the 18th century.

18th century studies

The research program includes research and publishing projects dedicated to a wide variety of themes, such as the history of universities, societies and communication; anthropology, aesthetics, culture and knowledge transfer, scholarly culture and literary forms of representation in the 18th century; the development of cultural patterns; the Enlightenment in global networks; and the Garden Kingdom of Dessau-Wörlitz.

Connected with the region's research institutions

The IZEA is located in the Red School, built in 1896, which was formerly the Higher School for Girls of the Francke Foundations. The IZEA houses a public library containing primary sources and research literature related to the Enlightenment in regional and European contexts. The Alexander von Humboldt Chair of Modern Written Culture and European Knowledge Transfer and the Immanuel-Kant-Forum also have their offices in the building.

Enlightenment studies in international networks

Thanks to its outstanding library, its publishing projects, its geographic proximity to important historic sites related to the Enlightenment (including extensive archives, libraries and art collections), and its partnerships with major cultural and scientific institutions,  the IZEA is now one of the most important international research institutes dedicated to the study of the Enlightenment, and is an essential meeting point for scientists from around the world.

D. Critical Editions

Edition of the Collected Writings of Johann Georg Sulzer

Elisabeth Décultot, Philipp Kampa, Jana Kittelmann

In this ten-volume edition of his Collected Writings (Gesammelte Schriften, ed. Hans Adler and Elisabeth Décultot, Schwabe Verlag, Basel), Johann Georg Sulzer's publications as a member of the philosophical section of the Berlin Academy will be edited alongside his aesthetic, scientific, pedagogic and literary-historical writings, as well as unpublished correspondences that demonstrate the variety of the fields of knowledge with which Sulzer engaged.

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[] Christian Thomasius

Historical-Critical Edition of the correspondence of Christian Thomasius (1655–1728)

Daniel Fulda, Frank Grunert, Matthias Hambrock, Martin Kühnel, Andrea Thiele

Since May 2010 the DFG is funding the preparation and publication of a historical-critical edition of the entire correspondence of the Halle lawyer and philosopher, Christian Thomasius. The project takes into account the extraordinary importance of Thomasius for the formation of the Enlightenment in Germany and fulfils a long-standing need. The systematic edition of these primary sources makes possible for the first time the exact reconstruction and organisation of Thomasius' multifaceted oeuvre as well as of his biography.

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[] Christian Wolff

Historical-Critical Edition of the correspondence between Christian Wolff and Ernst Christoph, count of Manteuffel (1738–1748)

Jürgen Stolzenberg, Detlef Döring (†), Katharina Middell, Hanns-Peter Neumann

The aim of the project is to publish a historical-critical edition of the correspondence between the philosopher Christian Wolff (1679-1754) during his time in Marburg and Halle and his patron, Ernst Christoph, count of Manteuffel (1676-1749), during his time Berlin and Leipzig. The correspondence alone includes 488 letters from the two correspondents and extends from the 11th of May 1738 to the 5th of November 1748.

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[] Titelblatt: „Der Naturforscher“ herausgegeben von J. E. I. Walch, Erstes Stück, Halle 1774.

Social Production of Knowledge in the Enlightenment – Analytical Text and Network Discourse Reconstruction. The Halle Newspapers and Journals, 1688–1815

Daniel Fulda, Anne Purschwitz

The project considers the functional mechanisms of the construction of knowledge based on the widest possible range of sources. A discourse reconstruction based on the Halle newspapers and journals will open up new perspectives on various discourses and their development and will allow comparisons between them with regard to the generation and transformation of knowledge.

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[] Guillaume Thomas François Raynal

Guillaume Thomas François Raynal: Histoire philosophique et politique des établissements et du commerce des Européens dans les deux Indes. Semi-Automatic Differential Analysis of Complex Text Variations

Thomas Bremer u.a.

The Digital Raynal Edition is a subproject the BMBF-funded project “Semi-Automatic differential analysis of complex text types” (SaDa).

The Raynal project develops an electronic edition of the volumes on Latin America of the Histoire philosophique et politique des établissements et du commerce des Européens dans les deux Indes. Based on the four different versions of the text, the new edition is distinguished by its particular interactivity.

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Work profiles. Philosophers and Writers of the 17th and 18th Centuries

Frank Grunert, Gideon Stiening

The series "Work profiles" gathers interpretations as faithful to the text as possible and annotated editions of comprehensive works by individual philosophers, scientists and writers of the 17th and 18th centuries.

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Christian Thomasius: Selected Works

Frank Grunert, Werner Schneiders

The Ausgewählten Werke of Christian Thomasius have initially been edited by Prof. Dr. Dr. Werner Schneiders, h. c. (Münster). With the publication of the Monatsgespräche, Dr. Frank Grunert is now also an official editor, with, since 1993, a reprint edition whose individual volumes offer an introductory preface by the respective volume editors and are published by the Georg Olms Verlag. The publication also offers a thorough index of persons and subjects. 

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Friedrich Daniel Ernst Schleiermacher, a Critical Edition

Jörg Dierken

Friedrich Daniel Ernst Schleiermacher (1768-1834) produced, along with his printed works and his unpublished texts (such as lectures, etc.) an enormous correspondence.

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