Edith Birnbaum Milman Memorial Fellow Dr. Bettina Brandt

Dr. Bettina Brandt currently works as Teaching Professor in the Department of German and Russian Languages and Literatures at the Pennsylvania State University (USA). She holds a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature (French, German, and American) from Harvard University (USA). As the Edith Birnbaum Milman Memorial Fellow, at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, Dr. Brandt is conducting research for her project, "With Love from Vienna: The Daily Life and Fate of Elderly Jews in Austria after the ‘Anschluss.’" This monograph-in-progress is a collective biography about four generations of an extended Austrian-Jewish family with a focus on the Holocaust Years and the care for the elderly left behind in Vienna after the Anschluss.

Dr. Brandt is the author of numerous book chapters and articles on transnational multilingual German-language authors such as Yoko Tawada, Emine Özdamar and Herta Müller, and editor of several books and journal issues on a variety of similar topics. Most recently, she edited a special issue about the “Politics of Archives” for Seminar: A Journal of Germanic Studies (2017) and, together with Daniel Purdy, China in the German Enlightenment (University of Toronto Press, 2016). Brandt, who is also translator, has been  the recipient of several other research awards and fellowships. In 2017 she received a Botstiber Fellowship for Austrian-American Studies to conduct research in Vienna (Austria), and a Martin Miller and Hannah Norbert-Miller Visiting Fellowship at the University of London to conduct research in British archives (Great Britain). In the Fall of 2016 she was a Fellow at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies in the Netherlands.

Dr. Brandt is fluent in English, German, French, and Dutch, and can understand and read Italian and Spanish.

While in residence at the Mandel Center Brandt is conducting research to shed light on the many challenges faced by the elder community in Vienna after the Nazi takeover in their daily lives and while trying to emigrate to the United States where they were hoping to join their children. Through her monograph, Brandt will draw attention to the community of elderly left behind, while also analyzing how the younger generation managed to flee, which different networks helped them to do so, and how, once in the United States, they started new lives all the while trying to rescue their parents.