Seminar für Englische Philologie
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Seminar für Englische Philologie
Abteilung Nordamerikastudien / American Studies
Käte-Hamburger-Weg 3
37073 Göttingen

Tel. +49-551-39-7587

Fax +49-551-39-9004

Please note that Prof. Gross will hold his office hours from 4 to 5 pm (instead of from 2.30 to 3.30 pm) on Tuesday, June 27.


News and Events

Welcome to the North American Studies Section of the English Department!

Talk by Maximilian Meinhardt (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz): Absorbing the Machine: Hart Crane's Technologic of Metaphor and Poetic Form

The North American Studies Section invites you to a talk by Maximilian Meinhardt (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz): Absorbing the Machine: Hart Crane's Technologic of Metaphor and Poetic Form on June 21 at 4:15 p.m. in OEC 1.162.

For more details, please see here.


(Photo by Babette Tischleder)

Susy Bielak & Fred Schmalz: 'Make no Little Plans': Mining Chicago's Archives for Artistic Inspiration, Performance and Discussion with Babette Tischleder

Chicago's history is written in hubris - from reversing the course of the Chicago River in 1900 to expanding the size of the city itself by dumping trash into the lake. These large-scale public works have had profound and enduring consequences for the city's people, indeed for the character of the city itself. This is the kind of fodder that propels the work of the artist duo Balas & Wax, who examine the dynamic nature of cities through poetic reflections on the built and natural environments. In this performance and discussion, Susy Bielak and Fred Schmalz will present a video and sound work, Fourth Horizon (2016), as well as a current work-in-progress, and discuss their process for mining the social histories and archival records of Chicago for artistic inspiration.

The event will take place on Tuesday, June 13, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. at Literarisches Zentrum, Düstere Str. 20.

For more details, please see here.


Andrew Gross and Babette Tischleder at the March for Science in Berlin, Pariser Platz, April 22, 2017

Tutorials: Writing Term Papers and Take Home Exams

Our tutors Michael Rauser and Theresa Croll will offer tutorials on how to successfully write Term Papers and Take Home Exams.
For more details, please see here.

International Conference Cultures of US-American Conservatism, February 9-12, 2017, University of Göttingen

Conservatism in the United States can seem perplexing from a European perspective. It is also under-theorized in many branches of the humanities, including literary and cultural studies. The international conference Cultures of US-American Conservatism will address both of these problems by bringing together scholars from the social sciences and the humanities to explore US-American conservatism from a cultural perspective. The goal of the conference is to interrogate this orientation by placing the multiplicity of conservative politics in relation to conservative lifestyles, beliefs, attitudes, discourses, markers of taste, media outlets, and social and familial roles.

For further information, please see the conference website

From 'Object of Refuge' to 'Thing Theory 2017':
Babette B. Tischleder participates in conferences in Mainz, Dehradun (India), and Philadelphia

Babette B. Tischleder will serve as chair, panelist, and speaker at three international conferences in December and January:


Delegation of North American Studies Students attends Barack Obama's Speech in Hannover

April 25 started early for a group of students and three faculty members of the English Department, who gathered on a platform in Göttingen at 6 a.m. to take a train to Hannover: The U.S. Consulate had invited a number of North American Studies students to attend Barack Obama's last speech as President of the U.S. on European ground. In his speech, Obama appealed to his audience to believe in a unified Europe, saying "that the United States, and the entire world, needs a strong and prosperous and democratic and united Europe."
The students from Göttingen were happy to be part of a select audience of just a few hundred people who received a personal invitation to the event. One of our students, Laura Cavallaro, even shook Obama's hand to bid him goodbye. So the three hours of waiting in order to go through security before being admitted to the venue was quickly forgotten - it was well worth it to experience President Obama live. Many thanks to the U.S. Consulate General in Hamburg for the invitation!


For more photos see here.

New book published: The Pound Reaction

The Pound Reaction_kleinEzra Pound was confined in a mental institution and facing treason charges when he won the first Bollingen Prize in 1949. Pound's defenders claimed that the prize proved artistic freedom to be alive and well in the United States. Only totalitarian regimes forced artists to tow the party line. The Pound Reaction explores how a number of writers responded to this free speech defense of Pound's poetry. The Pound Reaction was the winner of the European Association of American Studies Rob Kroes Publication Award in 2013.

New book published: Cultures of Obsolescence

Cover Cultures of Obsolescence_klein Cultures of Obsolescence: History, Materiality, and the Digital Age (New York: Palgrave Macmillan), edited by Babette B. Tischleder and Sarah Wasserman is out now.
Obsolescence is fundamental to the experience of modernity, not simply one dimension of an economic system. The contributors to this book investigate obsolescence as a historical phenomenon, an aesthetic practice, and an affective mode. Calling attention to the fact that obsolescence can structure everything from the self to the skyscraper, Cultures of Obsolescence asks readers to rethink existing relationships between the old and the new.
For the table of contents and further infos see the publisher's website; you can download the introduction "Thinking Out of Sync: A Theory of Obsolescence" as sample chapter.

Andrew S. Gross Appointed Professor of North American Studies

We are happy to announce that Andrew S. Gross has been appointed Professor of North American Studies at the English Department of Göttingen University. In the summer term, Prof. Gross will offer the lecture course "A Cultural History of American Literature IV: From 1945 to the Present," and courses on William Faulkner, "The Clash of Civilizations in the Early Republic," and twentieth-century American poetry.
Prof. Gross is the author of Comedy, Avant-Garde, Scandal: Remembering the Holocaust after the End of History (Winter Verlag, 2010; with Susanne Rohr) and The Pound Reaction: Liberalism and Lyricism in Mid-Century American Literature (forthcoming: Winter Verlag, 2015). His research interests include captivity narratives and the literature of the Early Republic, modernist literature, nineteenth- and twentieth-century American poetry, representations of the Holocaust, representations of terrorism and 9/11, travel narratives, and the history of cultural theory.
The faculty of the North American Studies section at Göttingen University welcomes Prof. Gross aboard!

Prof. Babette B. Tischleder: Research at the University of Chicago and the University of California, Berkeley

During the winter term, Babette B. Tischleder is on leave (Forschungssemester): She spent five months as a Fellow of the Karla Scherer Center for the Study of American Culture at the University of Chicago and presented current research in lectures in Chicago and at the Institute for Advanced Study of the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. In February and March she will conduct research at the University of California, Berkeley. She will give a paper on "Serial Chronotopes: The Cultural Work of Narrative World Building in Contemporary Web and Television Series" at the 3rd International Berkeley Conference on Film & Media: "Serialities 1915/2015".

Reform: BA and MA degree programs (starting in the fall 2014)

At the beginning of the winter semester 2014/15, new study regulations for our BA and MA degree programs will be in place. Please click here for further information and also check our website for possible updates in the course of the next few weeks.
Please note that there will be two information meetings outlining the changes in the BA degree program and the implications for students. These will take place on 24 September 2014 (12:00; SEP Medienraum) and 06 October 2014 (12:00, SEP Medienraum) . Contact the degree coordinator, Dr. des. Vanessa Künnemann, in case of further questions.

Recently Published: The Literary Life of Things

BT_Litlife-xssize Babette B. Tischleder's The Literary Life of Things: Case Studies in American Fiction is out now. Please visit the publisher's webpage: Campus
International distribution by University of Chicago Press.
Engaging a great range of American literature from Harriet Beecher Stowe and Edith Wharton to Vladimir Nabokov and Jonathan FranzenThe Literary Life of Things illuminates scenes of animation that disclose the aesthetic, affective, and ethical dimensions of our entanglement with the material world. For more details, please see here.

Conference "Cultures of Obsolescence in North America: Aesthetics, Materiality, History"

Obsolescence TVThe conference, hosted by the English Department and the Lichtenberg Kolleg, took place in June 2013 in the Historic Observatory at Göttingen. It started with a keynote by Prof. Bill Brown of the University of Chicago on the topic of "The Obsolescence of the Human." Please see the conference website for pictures and more details.

Student Exchange Program with the University of Central Oklahoma

Edmond, OKA new exchange program with the UCO in Edmond, Oklahoma, is in its second year. Each academic year, up to three Göttingen students are given the opportunity to take part in an exchange of one to two semesters. The program is open to all students of the SEP. More information is available online or by contacting Marleen Knipping, M.A.

New Books by Our Faculty

Hamscha_cool_xsTo find out about publications written or edited by members of the American Studies section of the English Department, please click here. Books published recently include The Literary Life of Things: Case Studies in American Fiction (Babette B. Tischleder), Is It Cause It's Cool? Affective Encounters with American Culture (ed. Susanne Hamscha, Astrid M. Fellner, Klaus Heissenberger, and Jennifer Moos), and The Fiction of America: Performance and the Cultural Imaginary in Literature and Film (Susanne Hamscha).

Our Degree Programs

Aula Prospective students interested in our B.A. or M.A. program "North American Studies" can find detailed information on the curriculum, our research, and course offerings in this special section of our website. For individual counseling on the application process, course selections, and career opportunities, please contact Dr. des. Vanessa Künnemann.