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To tackle the subject of German colonial history is a central concern of the Humboldt Forum, as both the history of the site and the collections presented here are set in colonial contexts.

A little-noticed starting point of German colonialism is the Brandenburg colony of Groß-Friedrichsburg. It existed from 1683 to 1718 in what is now Ghana on the west coast of Africa and served the trafficking of enslaved people.

Elector Friedrich Wilhelm had sent Otto Friedrich von der Gröben on the journey in 1682 in order to secure Brandenburg a share in the transatlantic trade. After his return, Gröben published the  ‘Guinean Travelogue’ (‘Guineische Reise-Beschreibung’) and dedicated it to his patron.

Literary scholar Gabriele Leschkek will provide us with insights into the thought patterns and language of the book and shed light on the social frameworks that shaped European colonialism and its continuing impact.

The actress Alina Vimbai Strähler, a member of the Schaubühne Berlin ensemble, will read excerpts from the travel report.

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