I teach courses on predominantly contemporary and 20th-century German-speaking literatures and cultures, with specific foci on the social roles of literature in modern Germany, cultures of the Cold War, German-language literature of migration, and the intersection of literature and technology. In the past, I have taught courses such as “German Literature, Culture, and Society from the Late 18th Century to the Present”, “Marx, Nietzsche, Freud”, “Germany in the Cold War”, “Minorities in Germany”, “Crossing Borders in 20th– and 21st-Century German Culture”, and “Engineering Texts: Avantgardes in 20th-Century Germany,” as well as a seminar on translating academic German. I have also advised a senior thesis on contemporary performances of Bertolt Brecht’s plays in the United States.
My research examines unofficial cultures in former East Germany, with emphasis on the intersection of aesthetics and politics in underground literature that was often self-published (as samizdat) before the fall of the Berlin Wall. My monograph-in-progress reappraises the relationship of this literature to the state and its “loyal dissidents” Christa Wolf, Heiner Müller, Bertolt Brecht, John Heartfield, and other members of the historical and postwar avantgarde. I have published articles on feminism and state surveillance in Christa Wolf, literary exchanges between East Germany and Czechoslovakia in the works of Jan Faktor, and on colonial and socialist histories in Jenny Erpenbeck’s contemporary refugee novel Gehen, ging, gegangen (Go, Went, Gone).
Recent Distinctions and Awards:
Max Kade Foundation Summer Research Grant, Washington University in St. Louis (2019)
Women in German Professional Development Award (2019)
Certificate of Teaching Excellence, the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, Harvard University (2018)
Harvard College Fellowship, Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, Harvard University (2016-18)
American Friends of Marbach Detjen-Geercken Summer Research Grant (2015)
Humboldt Universität zu Berlin Exchange Fellowship (2014-15)