Science and Survival: Translating and Curating the Papers of Georg and Max Bredig

Thu. Mar. 23, 2023 - 6:30pm - 7:30pm
Günther Finke Memorial Lecture by Jocelyn McDaniel, PhD
Jocelyn McDaniel will discuss her work translating the German-language archive of the Papers of Georg and Max Bredig at the Science History Institute, which was acquired in 2019, as well as her curation of the exhibit “Science and Survival” (on display at the SHI until April 2023). Spanning the late 19th and 20th centuries, the archive contains the library, correspondence, and memorabilia of pioneering German Jewish physical chemist, Georg Bredig (1868-1944), and his chemist son, Max Bredig (1902-1977). The pre-1933 materials document Georg Bredig’s noteworthy scientific career in physical chemistry during the golden age of German science, particularly his contributions to catalysis, the founding of the Bredig arc method, and his vast international collaborations. Many of his correspondents were also groundbreaking scientists and Nobel laureates, including Svante Arrhenius, Wilhelm Ostwald, Fritz Haber, and Max Planck. The post-1933 reveal how Georg and Max Bredig, took advantage of their extensive scientific network to escape Germany under the Third Reich. Of note in this part of the archive is correspondence relating to Max Bredig’s courageous endeavors, both independent and collaborative, to help his family and friends in Europe once he was safe in the USA
Jocelyn McDaniel is the research curator for the Bredig Project at the Science History Institute. Her responsibilities include translating and curating the German language papers of the German Jewish chemists Georg and Max Bredig. She most recently curated the exhibit "Science and Survival" for the archive, which is on display at the Science History Institute through April 2023. Dr. McDaniel holds a PhD in German Studies from University of Maryland at College Park, a BA and MA in German literature from the University of Delaware, and a MA in European cultural history from the Universität des Saarlandes. She has also taught German courses at the University of Maryland since 2012.