News |Call for applications: Thomas Mann Fellowships 2023

The Thomas Mann House in Los Angeles is a lively place for transatlantic debate, where outstanding personalities explore fundamental political, social, and cultural questions of the present and the future in exchange with each other. The applications for Junior and Senior Fellowships for stays of 3 up to 10 months at the Thomas Mann House are now being accepted. The applicant’s project proposals need to address the following annual theme:


The Political Mandate of the Arts.

The freedom of art is one of the imperatives of every democracy. But what is the role of art when democracies come under pressure? Against this background, is it legitimate to speak about a political mandate of the arts? On which social issues can artists and cultural workers give new impulses?

Writers, thought leaders, and intellectuals from non-academic fields such as culture, politics, media, and business, as well as scholars in the humanities, natural sciences, social sciences, technology, and economics who live or have lived in Germany for an extended period of time are eligible to apply. Possession of German citizenship is not required.

  • The Junior Fellowships are aimed at people who are at the beginning of their career. Applicants must already have their first publications and public visibility (e.g. in the form of public readings, lectures, participation in conferences, etc.). Junior Fellowships are endowed with 2,500 EUR per month.
  • Senior Fellowships are aimed at renowned experts who enjoy international recognition in their field. Applicants must already have extensive publications and broad public visibility (e.g., in the form of numerous publications, awards, invitations to public presentations, and relevant media coverage). Senior Fellowships are endowed with 3,500 EUR per month.

Fellowships are for the realization and public presentation of a specific transatlantic project on "The Political Mandate of the Arts." Open dialogue with a broad public is a central concern of the Fellowship Program. Therefore, in addition to very good English language skills, intellectual curiosity, and a willingness to engage in interdisciplinary dialogue, Thomas Mann Fellows are expected to actively and intensively engage in exchange locally and beyond California, and to network with partners and institutions in the United States. The selection process also requires that each application be accompanied by a strong letter of recommendation.

As a residency of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Thomas Mann House and its interdisciplinary programs are committed to the spirit of Thomas Mann. During his time in America, the writer intensively addressed questions about the roots of fascism, democratic renewal, freedom, migration, and exile in his literary works, lectures, and essays. Following on from this socio-political work, the Thomas Mann House today is dedicated to the relevant questions of our time. It brings German and American stakeholders from different disciplines, intellectual, and artistic traditions, and with different political views into conversation. Fellowships and events facilitate encounters and intellectual exchange.

The application form is available at The application deadline is March 17, 2022.

Fellowships are granted by an independent advisory board appointed by the Board of Trustees of Villa Aurora & Thomas Mann House e. V.

The Thomas Mann Fellowships are generously supported by the Berthold Leibinger Stiftung, the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach-Stiftung, and the German Federal Foreign Office.

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