The University of Massachusetts Amherst

The DEFA Film Library at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, founded by Professor Barton Byg in 1993, is the only archive and research center outside of Germany devoted to a broad spectrum of filmmaking from and related to the former GDR. It houses an extensive collection of 35- and 16mm prints, DVDs, books, periodicals and articles. Students are involved in all aspects of the Library’s research, outreach and teaching activities and also gain valuable experience in subtitling and library, conference and arts management.

The library makes films available to a wide public in the USA and Canada through: touring film series; the rental of 35- and 16mm films from our collection, in cooperation with a wide range of partners; and the production and distribution of films on DVD with English subtitles and extensive bonus materials by experts in the field.

The DEFA Film Library supports an international network of researchers with a range of regular programming—such as biennial Summer Film Institutes and Filmmaker’s Tours, and workshops and panel discussions at major conferences in the US and Europe—that helps shape national and international research agendas on [East] German cinema during the global Cold War and on related films from Germany and elsewhere.