Individual research interests and projects
Prof. Dr. Mark Stein
AOR Dr. habil. Markus Schmitz
Dr. Marga Munkelt (former staff)
Dr. Silke Stroh (former staff)
As a critic, writer, and academic, Mark Stein specialises in Black British and British Asian Writing, Caribbean Literature, Critical Theory, Diaspora Studies, and Postcolonial Studies. He focuses on porosity, translocation, and transnationalism and holds an interest in African literatures, South Asian literatures, English literature, and Media Studies. He works/has worked with the following research groups and networks: PIN - Postcolonial Intellectuals and their European Publics research network, Afroeuropeans Network, Literary Form (DFG-Research Training Group), Transmigration, Encyclopedia of Afro-European studies, Postcolonial Germany and Britain Network, and Open Cities.
His current research project "Escape to Europe: Comparative Refugee Imaginaries" starts from the (generic, tropological, and ethical) limits of telling refugee stories according to the dominant European emplotment of the so-called refugee crisis. As a critical counterpoint it explores the transformation of Middle Eastern and African imaginaries of refugee-migration to Europe since approx. 1948 across various genres (including literature, music, film, performance art, or the vlogo- and blogosphere). Questioning our conventional notion of refugee-ism the project suggests new ways of understanding the historical and political presence of refugee migration. By doing so it at the same time stresses the role of comparative literary and cultural studies within the multidisciplinary field of forced and clandestine migration studies.
In his PhD thesis he analysed how recent cinematic representations of Great Britain are connected to the long-term effects of Margaret Thatcher’s premiership (“Post-Thatcherism in British Cinema since 1990”). His most recent project looks at rediscovered, popular Victorian women writers and connections to Empire in their texts.
Research interests include:
- Film and media studies
- British cinema
- Genre theory
- Contemporary British Literature
Deborah’s General research interests include literary and cultural theory/criticism, critical theory, contemporary African literature and African studies, masculinities, social media and social protests. In her PhD thesis, "Big Man Aesthetics: Masculinity, Power, and Contemporary African Literature," Deborah examined allegorical significations of the trope of the Big Man. Framing her readings within the context of nascent nationalism in the post-colony and resurgent nationalism in the global North, the PhD broadens the scope of comparative masculinity studies and situates the trope of the Big Man in its transnational, transcultural, and transcontinental manifestations. Deborah’s current book length project looks at how hashtag activism is shifting the contours of knowledge production.
Julian's PhD research focuses on representations of space, masculinity, and the male black body in British grime culture. His thesis analyzes how contemporary black British audiovisual art creates alternative imaginaries of council housing estates and responds to the racializing narratives that impact dominant portrayals of the council estate. He also works on framing a wider understanding of grime culture that encompasses film, literature, and poetry. Julian is also a member of the NWO-funded research network PIN - Postcolonial Intellectuals and their European Publics.
Other research areas include: black and Asian British writing, film, and TV; neo-Victorian studies; diasporic literatures; Chinese-Jamaican literature and culture.
Shakespeare Studies; Chicano Studies; minority cultures; editorial theory and textual criticism; performance theory and criticism. Member of Transmigration research group.
Her current main project is a post-doctoral thesis ("Habilitationsschrift") / monograph entitled "Narratives of transmigration: Multiple movement and cultures of memory in the British colonial diaspora," with a focus on Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Her other research interests include postcolonial theory; nationalism and transnationalism; Scottish Studies; Black/Asian British as well as African literature and culture; film and TV.
She is also a member and main coordinator of the international Young Scholars' Network "Black Diaspora and Germany", funded by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft / DFG) from 2010 to 2018.