Saturday, October 05, 2013

Another update on my forced labour paper

I finally heard back from the German organizers of the Ho conference on forced labour. Yesterday, I was discussing a draft of the paper with Marc Becker when the Head of the Department summoned me to his office to ask if I intended to submit a paper to the conference. Sitting in his office was one of the organizers from Humboldt University. I informed her that I had sent her colleague my abstract in July four separate times using two different e-mails. She then asked me to send her the abstract which I did yesterday. Today I finally heard back from the chief organizer whom I had e-mailed in July. They are going to put my paper at the end as part of a round table discussion on putting forced labour in colonial Africa into a larger international context. The panel will have presenters on India and Brazil as well as my paper dealing with the USSR.


Tanja Nyberg said...

May be because of the Nadya's letter which revealed that forced labor in the labor camps flourishes in Russia?

J. Otto Pohl said...

No, it is because one of his colleagues met with my Head of Department. He was puzzled why she had not received my abstract. So he pulled me in to talk to her. I explained to her that I had sent him my abstract four times in July and had not heard anything from him despite the passage of over two months. The reputation of Germans for being punctual is one of those myths like Africans being stupid that has absolutely no basis in reality. I have have seen far more delays by German academics than by any other nationality.