Re­search & Teach­ing Pro­file

20th and 21st Century American Literature and Culture, U.S. Cultural and Intellectual History, Film and TV, Science Fiction, Graphic Novels, Digital Humanities

In den fol­genden Forschung­sclustern bin ich akt­iv:

Audio and Visual Studies

In the vibrant, ever-expanding field of visual culture and sound studies, our department focuses on four clearly defined areas. A research project funded by the BMBF and co-directed by Alexander Dunst, "Digital and Cognitive Approaches to Graphic Literature" explores graphic novels and comics from a Digital Humanities perspective. Jarmila Mildorf leads a project called "Audionarratology," investigating the interface of narrative and sound. Several projects located at the department investigate the history of photography, in its American context (Christoph Ribbat) and in the UK (Merle Tönnies). Finally, Hollywood cinema, transnational film, and visual culture constitute central research and teaching areas in the department (Alexander Dunst, Christina Flotmann, Alexandra Hartmann, Christoph Singer, Sara StraußMiriam Strube).

Cultural and Intellectual History

The fields of cultural and intellectual history examine the development of cultural practices and thought in the past and their significance for our present, while expanding the study of history and culture beyond the boundaries of traditional disciplines in the humanities. Current research in these fields within the English department focuses on a diverse array of topics, stretching from the mid-nineteenth to the late twentieth century across the United States and Europe. They include the development of sports and foodways, book-length studies in the history of technology and the Cold War, as well as the philosophical movement known as pragmatism. Faculty members active in this area of research are:
  In addition to regular teaching and publication in these fields, the English department has hosted a number of events addressing issues in cultural and intellectual history in recent years, including conferences on “Cultures of Basketball” (2014) and “Revisioning Pragmatism: William James in the New Millennium” (2010). We welcome inquiries from students and researchers with an interest in further study in these areas or collaborating on research projects.

Medical Humanities

The interdisciplinary field of the medical humanities studies the experience of illness and its cultural meaning across different historical epochs and media. It adds a distinctive humanities perspective to clinical practice and the medical and biological sciences, offering an emphasis on human expression and subjectivity frequently marginalized in these fields. Current research in the medical humanities within the English department focuses on the cultural and intellectual history of psychiatry and psychology during the Cold War era, as well as narratives of illness and disability in twentieth-century and contemporary literature and culture. Faculty members active in this area of research are:
  We welcome inquiries from students and researchers with an interest in further study in these areas or collaborating on research projects.


Die Narratologie befasst sich im engeren Sinne mit den Strukturen literarischer Erzählungen (klassische Narratologie) und im weiteren Sinne mit narrativen Strukturen in anderen Gattungen wie Drama oder Lyrik, sowie mit nicht-literarischen Erzählungen und Formen und Funktionen des Erzählens in verschiedenen Medien (postklassische Narratologien). In unserem Institut gibt es narratologische Forschungsschwerpunkte in den Bereichen
  • Filmnarratologie: Wie ‚erzählen‘ Filme? Welche filmästhetischen Mittel werden erzählstrategisch eingesetzt, um eine Filmhandlung und Figuren zu vermitteln? Welche Wirkungen erzielen solche Mittel? Wie und in welchem Ausmaß ist filmisches Erzählen rückgebunden an kulturell und historisch geprägte Konventionen und Bedingungen?  
  • Erzählen im Comic: Wie ‚erzählt‘ diese primär visuelle Kunstform? Wie werden erzählte Welten mithilfe comic-spezifischer Erzählmethoden erzeugt? Wie lesen wir Comics?
  • Kognitive Narratologie: Welche kognitiven Prozesse laufen bei der Lektüre literarischer Erzählungen ab? Wie verstehen wir die mentalen Prozesse von literarischen Figuren? Wie trägt die Wahrnehmung realweltlicher Phänomene zum Verständnis literarischer erzählter Welten bei (conceptual blending)?
  • Alltagserzählungen und mündliches Erzählen: Welche Rolle spielt das Erzählen in Alltagssituationen? Wie unterscheiden sich Alltagserzählungen von literarischen Erzählungen? Welche Erzählstrategien finden sich in konversationellen Erzählungen? Welche Rolle spielen Stimme und Intonation beim mündlichen Erzählen?
  • Audionarratologie: Wie ‚erzählen‘ Audio-Kunstformen wie Hörspiel und Hörbuch? Wie unterstützen und bedingen Klang und Stimme narrative Strukturen?