Fellow in the project „Epochal Life Worlds: Man, Nature and Technology in Narratives of Crisis and Change“ (October–December 2021)
Katrin Heilmann is a historian of modern China with a particular interest in writing military history back into broader histories of the People’s Republic of China. She defended her PhD thesis in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London funded by the London Arts and Humanities Partnership (LAHP). Katrin worked as a research assistant for the AHRC-funded project the Mao-era in Objects. She completed a master’s degree as a Yenching Scholar at Peking University, where she co-organised the inaugural Yenching Global Symposium. She holds a MA (hons) Chinese and History from the University of Edinburgh.
ProjectVisions of World in Moments of Crisis: Narrating Disaster in the People’s Republic of China
Evolving narratives of disaster are at the centre of this fellowship project. It explores how different actors framed and explained catastrophes ranging from man-made to natural calamities for different audiences. In this context, civil defence offers important insights into the underlying visions of the world informing these narratives, including the role of the Anthropocene in shaping these visions and how they accommodated technological change. As a form of world-making, changing narratives of disaster underline the importance of the everyday in shaping the societal experience of crisis.