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Dr. Stefanie Schäfer

Stefanie Schäfer
Dr. Stefanie Schäfer
Bau 98
Ernst-Abbe-Platz 8, Raum 623
07743 Jena
Telefon: +49 3641-9-44523
Fax: +49 3641-9-44502


Dr. Stefanie Schäfer is assistant professor (wissenschaftliche Assistentin) of American Studies at Friedrich-Schiller Universität Jena.

After studying English and French in Trier and Minneapolis and receiving an M.A. and state teacher’s degree in 2005 with a thesis on Beat literature, she became a research assistant at the University of Heidelberg English department. In 2009, she completed her PhD thesis ’Just the Two of Us’: Self-Narration and Recognition in the Contemporary American Novel, which examines the workings of narrative identity formation as a scenario of address in autodiegetic novels (published with WVT 2011). She has co-edited books on contemporary subjectivity, teaching 9/11 literature, and, most recently, the volume Fake Identities? Impostors, Con Men, Wannabes in North American Culture (Campus 2014, with Caroline Rosenthal).

Dr. Schäfer is the recipient of a DAAD post-doc scholarship. She was a research fellow at the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress in Washington DC (listen to her fellowship lecture HERE) and was shortlisted for the FSU-teaching prize in 2015.

In December 2016, Stefanie Schäfer completed her second monograph/habilitation entitled Yankee Yarns. Storytelling and the Invention of the National Body in 19th-Century American Culture about the performance of white American masculinity in the Yankee figure in drama, mock epics, novels, and in visual, and popular culture. In July 2017, she received the venia legendi for North American Literature and Culture.

Dr. Schäfer’s research interests include cultural mobilities, gender and popular culture studies. She is currently editing a special issue on “Black Womanhood in Popular Culture” for Open Cultural Studies and preparing a research project on female cowboys in the transnational North American West.


Most Recent Publications


(Re-Publication:) “‘Recognition Is a Form of Agreement:’ The Workings of Self-Narration in The Catcher in the Rye and Invisible Man.” (American Studies/Amerikastudien 57.4, ed. Winfried Fluck (2012). 603-636) will be republished in Harold Bloom (ed.), The Catcher in the Rye – J. D. Salinger. Modern Critical Interpretations, Chelsea House, 2017.

“Phenomenal Woman: Michelle Obama’s Embodied Rhetoric and the Cultural Work of Fashion Biographies.” Amerikastudien/American Studies 60.2/3 (2015): 235-254, peer-reviewed.

“The Calgary Stampede through a Cultural Studies Perspective: A Teaching Project.” In: Cultural Studies, Critical Methodologies 16.1 (2016): 48-57. Special issue on the Calgary Stampede, ed. Brian Rusted (with Caroline Rosenthal), peer-reviewed.

“Plantation Spaces and the Black Body: Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained as Maroon Narrative.” Black Studies Papers 1.1 (2014): 167-187, peer-reviewed.


Curriculum Vitae and List of Publications (PDF)
English | German


Research Interests

  • Transnational and Comparative North American Studies
  • Gender in popular culture and film
  • Storytelling, self-narration, autobiography theory and narrative theory
  • 19th century literature and the writings of John Neal
  • Black femininities
  • North American Western myths
  • → Student Excursion to the Calagary Stampede (Canada), July 2013
  • Teaching literature in the university classroom

Upcoming Talks

“The Canadian West as Spectacle: Aritha van Herk’s Stampede West(ern)s”. Conference paper. GKS Jahrestagung/Annual meeting of the Association of Canadian Studies in German-speaking Countries, Grainau, February 16-18, 2018.

“Transcultural Black Womanhood in Trey Anthony’s Da Kink in My Hair“ ― Workshop, “Fachtag Inter- and Transcultural Learning”, Thüringer Landesinstitut für Lehrerfortbildung Jena, 2. November 2017.

„Von Michelle zu Melania. First Ladies, Feminismus und Fashion Studies in den USA“. Vortrag im Rahmen des Thementags „Frontfrauen. Ein Tag zum Thema Frauen und Karriere“, FSU Jena, 27. Oktober 2017.

Coaching for graduate students. Young Scholars Forum "Memory and Media: The Making of Postcolonial Histories", Gesellschaft für Anglophone Postkoloniale Studien (GAPS), Erfurt, Oktober 6, 2017.

“Present ‘Like a Bomb’: Black Sheroes as Cultural Maroonage“. Conference Presentation in the panel „Women in Men’s Shoes: Sheroes in Literatures and Culture of the British Isles, the Commonwealth and Beyond“ ; Anglistentag 2017, September 20-23, 2017 Regensburg.

“Reading First Nations Literatures: Thomas King’s Short Story 'Borders'. Lecture at the English Teacher Training "Literature in the English language classroom“ (Thüringer Landesinstitut für Lehrerfortbildung), Jena, September 16, 2017.

„Uncle Sam und der Bald Eagle: Die USA als nationale Figur bei Thomas Nast“. öffentlicher Vortrag auf Einladung des Thomas Nast Vereins Landau, Stadtbibliothek Landau (Pfalz), September 7, 2017 (in German). | Invitation Flyer (PDF)