Professor Mirjam Wenzel studied general and comparative literature, political science, and theater studies in Berlin and Tel Aviv. Afterward she worked as a research assistant at the Institute of German Philology at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München and earned her doctorate with a dissertation on the Holocaust discourse in Germany in the 1960s.
Mirjam Wenzel is the author and co-editor of various books and exhibition catalogs on German-Jewish art and cultural history. Her publications include essays, articles, and blog entries on questions of cultural theory, aesthetics, and museology, on representations of the Holocaust in the visual arts, photography, and film, on critical theory, and particularly on the life and works of Siegfried Kracauer, Theodor W. Adorno, and Hannah Arendt. She also works as a curator and has developed several international exhibitions.
From 2007 to 2015, Mirjam Wenzel directed the media department of the Jewish Museum Berlin, where she was responsible for the presentation of Jewish history and culture in digital and print media. She has been recognized as an international expert on the digital transformation of museums ever since. She has directed the Jewish Museum Frankfurt – Germany’s oldest Jewish museum – since 2016 and has been an honorary professor at the Department of Jewish Studies at Goethe University Frankfurt since 2019. She will serve as a visiting professor at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar for the 2020/21 winter semester.
Quote by Professor Mirjam Wenzel
“Jewish life in Europe is diverse and threatened. It is rooted in a centuries-long history that is marked by the struggle for equal rights and social participation and by the age-old experience of discrimination and violence. These topics continue to be highly relevant today. Jewish museums touch a raw nerve of our time with their examinations of current issues. They raise the question of how we want to and can live together in an increasingly diverse and polarized society.”
- Since 01/2016 Director, Jewish Museum Frankfurt
- Since 04/2019 Honorary Professor for Jewish Studies, Goethe University Frankfurt
- 10/2020 – 07/2021 Guest Professor, Bauhaus-University, Weimar
- 10/2007 – 12/2015 Head of Media Department, responsible for conveying Jewish history and culture in print and digital media, Jewish Museum Berlin
- 01/2008 PhD thesis: »The Impact of Legal Proceedings on the Formation of Holocaust Memory in Philosophy, Film and Literature«
- 03/2001 – 09/2007 Research Assistant, Institute for German Literature, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich
- 10/2006 – 09/2007 Leo Baeck Fellowship, Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes
- 06/2000 – 10/2007 Freelance Curator for Contemporary Fine Art
- 06/2000 Master of Fine Arts in the Department of Humanities, Free University, Berlin
- 09/1995-03/1996 Guest Student at the Minerva Institute for German History, Tel Aviv University / Volunteer at the Friedrich-Ebert-Foundation, Tel Aviv
- 10/1992 – 06/2000 M.A.-Studies in Comparative Literature, Theater and Film Studies and Political Science at Free University, Berlin