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Jon Berndt Olsen

Associate Professor of History







Ph.D., University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, 2004.

Professor Jon Olsen's first book, Tailoring Truth: Politicizing the Past and Negotiating Memory in East Germany, 1945-1990  was published in January 2015 with Berghahn Books. His new research project analyzes the relationship of tourism and leisure to conceptions of liberty in East German society. Professor Olsen teaches courses on German and European history, but also offers courses on digital history, comparative memory, and other areas of public history. Before coming to UMass, he held a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at George Mason University and worked at the Center for History and New Media as the editor of a Website commemorating the 1989 revolutions in Eastern Europe.

Research Areas

Public history
Memory and historical consciousness
Tourism and leisure activities in Modern Germany, especially East Germany
History of Modern Germany

Courses Recently Taught

Graduate Courses:
Public History
Comparative Memory