Is it time to start using social media to promote academic projects?

At SAS it is our role to promote and facilitate research. As part of a one-year JISC-funded SMART project, the central communications team has been working closely with staff across SAS to expand and develop the social media presence of the School and its 10 institutes as part of a broader communications strategy. One of the aims of the project is to increase awareness and engagement with the impact of individual research and research-related projects at SAS through integrated and focused social media activity. We are hoping to use social media channels to encourage a community of academics, subject specialists and members of the public to engage with the School’s projects and their outputs. Our Approach We defined a 3 step approach to using social media to create impact: Communication: We wanted to enable our academics to share real-time commentary on their projects and assisted by offering training sessions on blogging. Sharing assets: For the first time we shared multimedia research materials (i.e. images from the Miller Archive) on our Flickr page. Social bookmarking: Throughout June and July we shared our content and assets via Twitter and Facebook to find and engage subject specialists and key organisations who could help amplify our message. A Case Study One of our recent attempts as part of this initiative was the promotion of the exhibition ‘Theatrical Lives from Vienna to London: Treasures from the Martin Miller and Hannah Norbert-Miller Archive‘ at the Institute of Germanic & Romance Studies. Our involvement with the project began just before the launch of the exhibition. Two members of IGRS worked closely with us in the creation of online content...

Treasures from the Miller Archive Exhibition – Launch Event

Over the past few weeks we brought you guest blog posts by the members of the Institute for Germanic & Romance Studies (IGRS), who have been working on the exhibition ‘Theatrical Lives from Vienna to London: Treasures from the Miller Archive’. While the IGRS is known for its seminars, lectures, workshops, colloquia, conferences and fellowships programmes, it is, as few might know, also custodian of immensely insightful archives. The Miller Archive, the focus of the current exhibition, was deposited at the IGRS after Hannah Norbert-Miller’s death in 1998 and, with generous funding from the Miller Trust, is currently being sorted and catalogued by Dr Clare George. Some of the items can be viewed at the exhibition, as well as our official Flickr page here. In order to introduce the fantastic Miller Archive to interested researchers (or refugees), the IGRS organised an exhibition launch event to take place at Senate House last week. Dr Marian Malet from the Research Centre for German and Austrian Exile Studies (EXILE) opened the event by looking back on the history of the project. Marian got to know Hannah Norbert-Miller in the 1990s while working on an oral history research study based on a series of interviews of representative men and women who came to Britain from Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia as refugees from Nazism. The findings have been published in Changing Countries: The Experience and Achievement of German-speaking Exiles from Hitler in Britain, 1933 to Today and include interviews with Hannah Norbert-Miller. Lead archivist, Dr Clare George, gave a presentation on the contents of the Miller Archive, discussing some themes that have emerged while she has been...

Refugee Week Series: Satire, Exile and World War II

Post by Dr Clare George. The second post, about exile libraries, can be found here. The third post, about refugee protection mechanisms, can be found here. Clare is the archivist working on The Martin Miller and Hannah Norbert Miller Archive: An Austrian Jewish Exile Theatre Collection. Final preparations are underway at the IGRS for the opening of the Miller Archive exhibition on 19th June. The exhibition is part of a larger project to catalogue and promote the use of this collection, a highlight of which is the material on the Austrian exile theatre in London in the Second World War, the Laterndl. The Laterndl – Austrian Exile Theatre in London The theatre was the setting for Martin Miller’s first performance of his famous Hitler parody speech, which he was subsequently commissioned to broadcast on BBC radio to Germany on April Fool’s Day 1940. News of the parody reached France, where it was hailed by anti-fascists, and the US, where it gave rise to an alarmed phone call to the BBC from CBS, who had fallen for the spoof. In an earlier blog post I wrote about the establishment and early days of the Laterndl, whose writers and directors had all worked in Viennese theatres in the 1930s. As exiles in London, they wanted to provide a home for Austrian drama and literature, and to contribute to the fight for an independent and free Austria. The establishment of a German-speaking theatre was also seen as a way of relieving the uprooted exiles’ homesickness, giving them hope and a belief in the future.   The Laterndl‘s first performance took place on 21 June 1939 with...

Tracing an extraordinary journey – New exhibition at SAS

Post by Dr Christopher Barenberg The Centre for German and Austrian Exile studies is currently documenting the life and work of Jewish Austrian actors – Martin Miller and Hannah Norbert-Miller. The project will culminate in an exhibition entitled ‘Theatrical Lives from Vienna to London: Treasures from the Miller Archive’ tracing the Millers’ lives from pre-war Vienna, across Europe, to London. This work has been made possible by a generous grant from the Martin Miller and Hannah Norbert-Miller Trust. Exhibition details: Senate House, Monday to Saturday, 9:00 to 18:00 Wednesday, 19 June – 30 August 2013. Admission free   About the project: The aim of this project is to sort, arrange and catalogue the collection on the University of London’s online catalogue, making details of it available to the academic community and other researchers interested in exile history and the performing arts. Tracing an extraordinary journey… The extraordinary story of Martin Miller and Hannah Norbert-Miller will resonate with many other family histories of flight and exile. Despite the success they both enjoyed in post-war Britain, the difficult journey which led them here should not be forgotten. It is a poignant reminder of the struggle many refugees experience today. Hannah was a promising young graduate of the famous Reinhardt drama school in Vienna, and Martin had a well-established acting and directing career, built over 17 years of working in German-language theatres across Central Europe. Leaving Austria in 1938, Hannah moved first to Paris to find work in film and then to the UK, to which she was only admitted at her second attempt in 1939. Martin, meanwhile, moved from Vienna to...