Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology and The Ethnographic Collection

GISCA Occasional Paper Series

The Göttingen Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology (GISCA) Occasional Paper Series publishes excellent student theses, current research findings of the institute's researching and teaching staff as well as outstanding talks at our institute's colloquium.



Current Volumes:


GISCA 19 Trenczek Cover

GISCA No.19, 2018

bachelor thesis


Anne Marijke Trenczek


"Muslimische Kinderehen in Deutschland: Kulturelle Tradition, islamisches Recht und deutsche Gesetzgebung"



Since the so called “refugee crisis“ the number of child marriages has increased in Germany. In July 2016, 1475 child marriages were registered in spite of the fact that in most cases marriage is only legally allowed over the age of 18. However, the number of unreported cases is suggested to be a lot higher. Regardless of the current movement of refugees, child marriages have been taking place in Germany for a long time in different contexts. Among them are Islamic marriages, that often remain hidden from the majority of the German society. The topic of Muslim child marriages in Germany is a complex matter and concerns different fields of study and aspects of daily life. Therefore, this paper examines the subject from a legal as well as anthropological perspective. It analyses on the one hand the question of motivation of the parties involved, and on the other the different ways of dealing with the issue of such marriages in Germany.






GISCA 18 Hermann Cover

GISCA No.18, 2018

Elfriede Hermann


"Social Capital in the Face of Climate Change: Voices of Emotional Belonging from Kiribati"



Faced with globally circulating news of anthropogenic climate change, local responses in the Pacific often include dual articulations: of emotions and of belonging to a specific land and people. In this essay I focus on expressions of emotional belonging that are articulated by citizens of Kiribati, an atoll state in the central Pacific that is considered to be particularly vulnerable to consequences of climate change. In examining the responses of Kiribati’s citizens, I conceptualise emotional belonging to land and people to be a form of social capital. From this perspective, I argue that the social capital that emotional belonging represents is constitutive of people’s will to social resilience vis-à-vis projections of how climate change will likely impact on their home islands. Tracing social resilience from an anthropological perspective, I hope to contribute to a growing body of studies that call for more research into local communities’ potential for adaptation, thus counterbalancing the prevailing emphasis on vulnerability.