Andreas Eckert

Andreas Eckert, a professor of African history at Humboldt-Universität Berlin, plans to use his Einstein Research Fellowship to write a comprehensive historical study of labor in Africa since 1945. He was inspired to embark on the project after noticing that the issue of labor – a concept that vanished almost entirely from Africa-related research post-1990 – had, for some time, been growing in relevance once again. This was linked to a developing interest in the informal and precarious forms of labor that are especially visible on the continent, but also due to an increased focus on types of employment that fall outside of “traditional” paid labor. In his monograph, Andreas Eckert aims to outline the shift that has occurred in labor practices and cultures, analyze the diverse range of subjective experiences and labor relations, and focus on individual and collective struggles in a world shaped by inequality. At the same time, he will critically examine key concepts such as proletarianization and informalization, as well as global history perspectives. During his Einstein Fellowship, Andreas Eckert’s post at Humboldt-Universität will be covered by global historian Felix Brahm.


The funding in the Einstein Research Fellow programme consists of the financing of a chair replacement at Humboldt University. Mr Eckert is represented by PD Dr Geert Castryck.