Prof. Dr. Caroline Rosenthal

   
seit 2019 Vorsitzende des Kuratoriums der Stiftung für Kanada-Studien
2015-2017 Präsidentin der Gesellschaft für Kanada-Studien
seit 2015 Mitglied im Graduiertenkolleg "Modell Romantik"
2010 Ruf an die Universität Wien (abgelehnt)
2009 Ernennung zur Professorin, Lehrstuhl für Amerikanistik, Universität Jena
2008-2009 Vertretung von Professuren an den Universitäten Heidelberg und Konstanz
2007 Habilitation an der Universität Konstanz, venia legendi für Nordamerikanische Literatur und Kultur
2001-2008 Wissenschaftliche Assistentin am Lehrstuhl für Amerikanistik, Universität Konstanz
2001 Promotion an der Universität Konstanz
1995-2001 Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin am Lehrstuhl für Amerikanistik, Universität Konstanz
1989-1995 Studium der Anglistik und Germanistik an der Universität Freiburg und der Simon Fraser University Vancouver 
Books Inhalt einblenden

Anglophone Literature and Culture in the Anthropocene, ed. with Gina Comos. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars 2019.

Gained Ground: Perspectives on Canadian and Comparative North American Studies, ed. with Eva Gruber. Camden House 2018.

Disrespected Neighbo(u)rs: Cultural Stereotypes in Literature and Film, ed. with Laurenz Volkmann and Uwe Zagratzki. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars 2018.

Probing the Skin: Cultural Representations of Our Contact Zone, ed. with Dirk Vanderbeke. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing 2015.

Fake Identity? The Impostor Narrative in North American Culture, ed. with Stefanie Schäfer. Berlin: Campus 2014.

New York and Toronto Novels after Postmodernism: Explorations of the Urban. Rochester, NY: Camden House 2011. Reviews: [Brauner, David [pdf, 177 kb]] [Minto, Deonne [pdf, 474 kb]] [Smith, Will [pdf, 44 kb]]

Space and Gender. Spaces of Difference in Canadian Women’s Writing/Espaces de différence dans l’écriture canadienne au feminin, ed. with Doris Eibl. Innsbruck: Innsbruck University Press 2009.

Gender Studies: Wissenschaftstheorien und Gesellschaftskritik, ed. with Therese Frey Steffen und Anke Väth. Würzburg: Könighausen & Neumann 2004.

Narrative Deconstructions of Gender in Works by Audrey Thomas, Daphne Marlatt, and Louise Erdrich. Rochester, NY: Camden House 2003.

Schwellentexte der Weltliteratur, ed. with Reingard M. Nischik. Konstanz: UVK Universitätsverlag Konstanz 2002.

Articles Inhalt einblenden

"The Desire to Believe and Belong: Wannabes and Their Audience in a North American Cultural Context." In: Woolgar, Steve/Claes-Fredrik Helgesson/David Moats/Else Vogel (eds.) The Imposter as Social Theory: Thinking with Gatecrashers, Cheats and Charlatans. Bristol University Press, 2021, (in press).

"Wildnis Stadt: Zeitgenössisches Urban Birding und seine historischen Wurzeln in den USA." In: Kerschbaumer, Sandra/Gisela Mettele (eds.) Romantische Urbanität. Wien/Köln: Böhlau, 2020, 187-209.

 "Landmarken: Das Konzept des Bioregionalismus bei Gary Snyder und Helmut Salzinger" (with Peter Braun). Zeitschrift für Germanistik XXX (2/2020): 363-380. 

"Sehnsuchtsort Natur: Von Ralph Waldo Emerson zu Peter Wohlleben. Schreiben über Natur in den USA und in Deutschland" (mit Peter Braun). Weiland, Marc/Werner Nell (eds.) Gutes Leben auf dem Land? Imaginationen und Projektionen. (Reihe: Rurale Topographien, Bd.12). Bielefeld: Transcript, 2021, 167-197. https://www.transcript-verlag.de/978-3-8376-5425-7

"The Nature(s) of Canadian Ecocriticism and Ecopoetry." In Comos/Rosenthal (eds.) Anglophone Literature in the Anthropocene. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing 2019: 96-114.

"Introduction" (with Gina Comos) to Anglophone Literature in the Anthropocene. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing 2019: i-xv.

"Modell des einfachen Lebens: Henry David Thoreaus Walden." In Kerschbaumer, Sandra/Stefan Matuschek (eds.) Romantik erkennen - Modelle finden. Paderborn: Ferdinand Schöningh 2019: 169-186.

"Introduction" (with Eva Gruber) to Gained Ground: Perspectives on Canadian and Comparative North American Studies, Camden House 2018: 1-18.

"Introduction" (with Laurenz Volkmann and Uwe Zagratzki) to Disrespected Neighbo(u)rs: Cultural Stereotypes in Literature and Film, ed. with Laurenz Volkmann and Uwe Zagratzki. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing 2018: viii-xvii.

"TransArea Studies: Gendered Mobility (and the Picara Figure) in North American Literature." In Hodgett, Susan/Patrick James (eds.) Necessary Travel: New Area Studies and Canada in Comparative Perspective. Lenham etc.: Lexington Press 2018: 117-128.

"Das anglophone Kanada: Kultur, Literatur und Musik" (with Wolfgang Klooß und Lutz Showalter). In Lehmkuhl, Ursula. Länderbericht Kanada der Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung, 2018: 155-192.

"'A carnival in hell': Representations of New York City in Siri Hustvedt's Novels." In Hartmann, Johanna, Christine Marks, Hubert Zapf (eds.) Zones of Focused Ambiguity in Siri Hustvedt's Works: Interdisciplinary Essays. Berlin: De Gruyter 2016: 51-66.

"Die Kunst des Gehens: Weibliches Flanieren in Siri Hustvedts The Blindfold und Tessa McWatts Out of My Skin." In Banita, Georgiana/Judith Ellenbürger/Jörn Glasenapp (eds.) Die Lust zu gehen: Weibliche Flanerie in Literatur und Film. München: Fink 2016: 77-100.

"The Calgary Stampede through a Cultural Studies Perspective: A Teaching Project." Cultural Studies/Critical Methodologies 16.1 (September 2015): 48-57 (with Stefanie Schäfer).

"Introduction." Probing the Skin: Cultural Representations of Our Contact Zone, ed. with Dirk Vanderbeke. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing 2015: 1-11 (with Dirk Vanderbeke).

"Embodying the Global Metropolis: Tessa McWatt's This Body and Out of My Skin." Canada and Beyond: A Journal of Canadian Literary and Cultural Studies Volume 4 (2014), http://rabida.uhu.es/dspace/bitstream/handle/10272/13344/Embodying.pdf?sequence=2

"Introduction" (with Stefanie Schäfer) to Rosenthal, Caroline/Stefanie Schäfer Fake Identity? The Impostor Narrative in North American Culture. Berlin: Campus 2014: 11-23.

"'The Wish to be a Red Indian: The Canadian Dream of Grey Owl." Rosenthal, Caroline/Stefanie Schäfer Fake Identity? The Impostor Narrative in North American Culture, ed. with Stefanie Schäfer. Berlin: Campus 2014: 45-61.

"Measuring Life in Tea Spoons: Tea and Domesticity in the Sentimental Novel." Schmidt-Haberkamp, Barbara/Susanne Schmid (eds.) Drink in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries. London: Pickering & Chatto 2014, 23-33.

"North American Urban Fiction." Nischik, Reingard M. (ed.) The Palgrave Handbook of Comparative North American Literature. New York: Palgrave Macmillan 2014, 237-254.

"Culinary Roots/Routes: Local and Global Foodways in North American Writing."  Zacharasiewicz, Waldemar (eds.) Cultural Circulation: Canadian Writers and Authors from the American South: A Dialogue. Wien: Facultas Verlag 2013: 351-363.

"Sean Penn's Into the Wild." Peters, Susanne et al. (eds.) Teaching Contemporary Literature and Culture. Trier: Wissenschaftlicher Verlag 2013: 69-386.

"Narrative und kulturelle Kontaktzonen in Mary Rowlandson's Captivity Narrative." Literaturwissenschaftliches Jahrbuch 52 (2011): 213-227.

"Thoreau's Long Shadow: Ideas of Wilderness and Wildness in John Krakauer's Book and Sean Penn's Film Into the Wild." Archiv für das Studium der Neueren Sprachen und Literaturen 247.2 (2010): 303-316.

"Re-writing the Anglicized City: The Figure of the Flâneuse in Dionne Brand's What We All Long For." Eibl, Doris/Caroline Rosenthal (eds.) Space and Gender. Spaces of Difference in Canadian Women’s Writing/Espaces de différence dans l’écriture canadienne au feminin. Innsbruck: Innsbruck University Press 2009: 231-245.

"Introduction: The Spaces Difference Makes." Eibl, Doris/Caroline Rosenthal (eds.) Space and Gender. Spaces of Difference in Canadian Women’s Writing/Espaces de différence dans l’écriture canadienne au feminin. Innsbruck: Innsbruck University Press 2009: 9-19.

"Locations of North in Canadian Literature and Culture." Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 29.2 (2009): 25-38

"Margaret Atwoods literaturkritische Essays." Kindlers Literatur-Lexikon. 3. Aufl. ed. by Heinz Ludwig Arnold. Stuttgart/Weimar: Metzler 2009.

"Margaret Atwood, Cat's Eye." Kindlers Literatur-Lexikon. 3. Aufl. ed. by Heinz Ludwig Arnold. Stuttgart/Weimar: Metzler 2009.

"Literary Theory and Literary Criticism." Nischik, Reingard M. (ed.) History of Literature in Canada: English-Canadian and French-Canadian. Rochester, NY: Camden House 2008: 291-309.

"Textual and Urban Spaces in Carol Shields's Unless." Kuester, Martin/Charlotte Sturgess (eds.) Reading/s from a Distance: European Perspectives on Canadian Women's Writing. Augsburg: Wissner 2008: 175-186.

"Collective Memory and Personal Identity in the Prairie Town of Manawaka: Margaret Laurence's 'The Loons'." Nischik, Reingard M. (ed.) The Canadian Short Story: Interpretations. Rochester, NY: Camden House 2007: 219-231.

"Nationale Mythen und symbolische Räume: Stadtdiskurse in den USA und Kanada." Köth, Anke/Anna Minta/Andreas Schwarting (eds.) Building America: Die Erschaffung einer neuen Welt. Dresden: Thelem 2005: 43-55. 

"Literaturtheorie und -kritik." Groß, Konrad/Wolfgang Klooß/Reingard M. Nischik (eds.) Kanadische Literaturgeschichte Stuttgart: Metzler 2005: 228-242.

"Comparing Mythologies: The Canadian North versus the American West." Hönnighausen, Lothar/ Anke Ortlepp/James Peacock/Niklaus Steiner (eds.) Regionalism in the Age of Globalism. Vol 2. Forms of Regionalism. University of Wisconsin: Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures 2005: 283-291.

"Einleitung" (with Frey Steffen und Väth) zu Gender Studies: Wissenschaftstheorien und Gesellschaftskritik. Würzburg: Könighausen & Neumann 2004: 9-17.

"'North Is Where the Inuit Live': Uncovering a Canadian National Myth." Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 24.1 (2004): 101-121.

"The Other American Renaissance: Susan Warner's The Wide, Wide World." Assmann, Aleida/Michael Frank (eds.) Vergessene Texte. Konstanz: UVK Universitätsverlag Konstanz 2004: 83-104.

"Das Spiel mit der Identität: Entwürfe von Weiblichkeit in Texten von Louise Erdrich und Aritha van Herk." Milfull, Inge/Christine Strobl (eds.) Das Fragwürdige Subjekt: Menschenbilder im 20. Jahrhundert. Regensburg: Pustet Verlag 2004: 293-318.

"Introduction" to Reingard M. Nischik/Caroline Rosenthal (eds.) Schwellentexte der Weltliteratur. Konstanz: UVK, Universitätsverlag Konstanz 2002: 1-24.

"'You must not tell anyone': Erzählte Identitäten in Audrey Thomas' Intertidal Life und Maxine Hong Kingstons The Woman Warrior." Neumann, Michael (ed.) Erzählte Identitäten: Ein Interdisziplinäres Symposion. München: Fink 2000: 153-165

"Canonizing Atwood: Her Impact on Teaching in the US, Canada, and Europe." Nischik, Reingard M. (ed.) Margaret Atwood: Works and Impact. Rochester, NY: Camden House 2000: 41-56.

"'Alice Hoyle: 1,000 interlocking pieces': Processes of Identity (De)construction in Audrey Thomas's Intertidal Life." Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 35.1 (1999): 186-195.

"Re-membering Self and (M)Other in Daphne Marlatt's Ana Historic." Christina Strobel/Doris Eibl (eds.) Selbst und Andere/s: Von Begegnungen und Grenzziehungen. Augsburg: Wißner 1998: 135-148.

"Margaret Laurence." Metzler Autorinnen Lexikon. ed. by Ute Hechtfischer/ Renate Hof/Inge Stephan/FloraVeit-Wild. Stuttgart/Weimar: Metzler 1998: 292-293.

"Daphne Marlatt." Metzler Autorinnen Lexikon. ed. by Ute Hechtfischer/ Renate Hof/Inge Stephan/FloraVeit-Wild. Stuttgart/Weimar: Metzler 1998: 335-336.

Reviews Inhalt einblenden

"Martin Spenger. Green Beat. Gary Snyder und die moderne amerikanische Umweltbewegung." Zeitschrift für Germanistik XXXI:2 (2021): (in print).

"Sarah Wylie Krotz, Mapping with Words. Anglo-Canadian Literary Cartographies, 1789-1916." Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 70 (2020): 254-256. 

"Susanne Neuenfeldt. Schauspiele des Sehens: Die Figur der Flaneurin, Voyeurin und Stalkerin im U.S.-amerikanischen Essay." Amerikastudien/American Studies 63.2 (2018).  

"Wieland Schwanebeck. Der flexible Mr. Ripley. Männlichkeit und Hochstapelei in Literatur und Film." ZAA 64.2 (2016): 228-30.

"Katharina Vester, A Taste of Power. Food and American Identities, California Studies in Food and Culture 59." H-Soz-Kult. May 2015 http://www.hsozkult.de.

"Catrin Gersdorf, The Poetics and Politics of the Desert: Landscape and the Construction of America" and Alexandra Ganser, Roads of Her Own: Gendered Space and Mobility in American Women's Road Narratives, 1970-2000." ZAA 58.2 (2010): 183-186.

"Petra Wittke-Rüdiger. Literarische Kartographien des kanadischen Nordens." Zeitschrift für Anglistik und Amerikanistik 4.4 (2006): 420-422.

"Joan W. Goodwin. The Remarkable Mrs. Ripley: The Life of Sarah Alden Bradford Ripley." Amerikastudien/American Studies 47.2 (2002): 306-308.

"W.H. New. Borderlands: How we Talk About Canada." Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 39.1 (2001): 187-188.

"Ludwig Deringer. Das Bild des Pazifischen Nordwesten von den Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart: Vergleichende Studien zur kanadischen und amerikanischen Literatur zwischen Regionalismus und Universalismus." Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 35.1 (1999): 198-200.

"Marlene Goldman. Paths of Desire: Images of Exploration and Mapping in Canadian Women’s Writing." Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 33.1 (1998): 190-192.

"Camille R. La Bossière. (ed.) Context North America: Canadian/U.S. Literary Relations." Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 31.1 (1997): 170-71.

"John Gray. Lost in North-America: The Imaginary Canadian in the American Dream."  Zeitschrift für Kanada-Studien 29.1 (1996): 171-72.

Media Inhalt einblenden

Significant Details: Prof. Dr. Caroline Rosenthal, Amerikanistin (31.12.2019) 

Wir Sehnen uns nach Dystopien, FAZ [pdf, 463 kb] (06.11.2019) 

Achtsamkeit durch meditatives Gehen in der Natur: Prof. Dr. Caroline Rosenthal (13.08.2019) 

Radiobeitrag [mp3, 35 mb] zur Leitkultur und zum kollektiven Gedächtnis, Beitrag als Kanadaexpertin (2017) 

Artikel über "Cowboys and Indians" Summer School in Jena, TLZ & OTZ [pdf, 194 kb] (Juli 2015) 

Kanadischer Radiobeitrag [mp3, 4 mb] über Calgary-Exkursion (Juli 2013)

"German Students absorb wild west culture" Calgary Herald [jpg, 346 kb] (13.07.2013)

"Pfannkuchenfrühstück und Tierrechte: Jenaer Studenten gehen auf Forschungsreise in Kanada" TLZ [pdf, 491 kb] (09.07.2013) 

"Erfahrung zu Literatur machen: Frau aus Kanada lehrt kreatives Schreiben in Jena" OTZ
(30.04.2013)

Teaching

Selection of M.A. Courses Inhalt einblenden

WS 2020/21, Literary Cartography: Calgary Through the Eyes of Writers

The spatial turn in the humanities in the 1980s has created an awareness that space is not simply a given but rather is produced in symbolic practices. Writing is one of those symbolic practices; it turns mere places into “storied places,” thus making them part of the cultural imaginary. In this seminar, we will use the city of Calgary in the Canadian West as an example for such a storied place. We will look at an array of fictional and non-fictional texts about Calgary from the 19th century to the present day which reflect the city’s multi- layered history from a North West Mounted Police Fort to a 1.3 million oil boomtown. Just like a geographical map, those texts chart Calgary’s specific character mapping out its geographic location, changing neighbourhoods, and way of life.

We will use Shaun Hunter’s anthology Calgary Through the Eyes of Writers (RMB 2018) as a text book for the course. It collects short excerpts from a multi-facetted array of texts about Calgary from its beginnings to the new millennium and allows us to study the cultural history of Calgary (and of Canada) through literary texts. We will also read a novel about Calgary, Aritha van Herk’s Restlessness. Both books have to be purchased; all other materials will be made available on Wordwise.

The course takes place online via Zoom. There will be three guest lectures by Calgarian writers: Shaun Hunter, who is presently appointed Historian in residence at the Clagary Public Library, will introduce us to the main objectives and trajectories of her anthology; acclaimed writer and professor of literature at the U of Calgary Aritha van Herk will join us for a workshop discussion; and Jaspreet Singh, former writer in residence at the Calgary public library and at the U of Calgary, will share insights with us on Calgary from his radio essays.

WS 2020/21, Green Poetry

Green Poetry is an umbrella term for what is otherwise called nature poetry, ecopoetry, tropological poetry, anthropocenic poetry, or geopoetry. It refers to poetry that examines our relationship to and our place in nature. In the epoch of the Anthropocene, Green Poetry often takes a political stance by probing the boundaries e.g. between nature and culture, humans and animals, the animate and inanimate new, by reexamining human agency, and by seeking out responsible ways of being in and with the world. Students will be introduced to texts by contemporary American and Canadian poets and to concepts such as bioregionalism, place-making, anthropocentrism, anthropomorphism as well as deep time and deep ecology.

SoSe 2020, Literature of Witness: Margaret Atwood’s Gilead

This seminar explores the literary structure, cultural-political impacts, and various adaptations of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale. First published in 1984, Atwood called her novel The Handmaid’s Tale “speculative fiction” to set it off from science fiction and to highlight that all the dystopian events in the book had actually already happened somewhere in the world. The Handmaid’s Tale has since become a political meme for violence against and oppression of women around the globe. With the release of Hulu’s TV-series The Handmaid’s Tale, Atwood’s work was further popularized and turned into an international and multi-medial phenomenon. Her latest book, The Testaments picks up strands from both the original novel and the tv-series and, as the title indicates, situates itself in the tradition of literature of witness. In class, we will closely analyze the form and function of the narrative structure of both novels and also look at how The Handmaid’s Tale has been adapted to film, tv, opera, and graphic novel. The course is especially suited for aspiring teachers as we will explore new formats of presentation as well as ways to teach The Handmaid’s Tale.

SoSe 2020, Literary Ornithology: Birds and Birding in American Literature 

This seminar explores the role birds and bird-watching have played in literature and culture from the romantic period until the present. We will look at fictional and non-fictional texts in which birds play a major role as well as at internet blogs on the recent phenomenon of urban birding in major metropolises around the world. Aside from textual analysis, we will look into how birds, birdwatching, and birding are closely connected to literary form, cultural issues, and theories. Urban birding, e.g., not only dissolves the boundary between nature and culture, rural and urban but often between subject and object as well as between human and animal. The class will include several fieldtrips and also interact with Prof. Honegger’s class on Medieval Birds.

SoSe 2019, Imagining the Canadian West 

This course will focus on the history and the imagination of the Canadian West. Often called the "mild West" in contrast to the US-Americaqn "wild West," the boundary between the two Wests was a fluid one in the beginning and law and order were established in Canada only after violent encounters between settlers and Natives. We will read texts by a variety of award-winning authors whose historical texts, short stories, poems, and novels look at the Canadian West from different angles. Some of the texts will be made available on wordwise. Books to be bought: Robert Kroetsch The Studhorse Man, Guy Vanderhaeghe The Englishman’s Boy, Thomas King Medicine River. Optional: Aritha van Herk Mavericks: An Incorrigible History of Alberta and Wallace Stegner Wolf Willow of which we will read excerpts.

SoSe 2019, North American Bioregionalism

In the age of the Anthropocene, bioregionalism deals with how we live in and inhabit a specific place. Bioregionalism deals with the relationship of humans to the envrionment in general and with our ethical responsibility for the environment in particular. This seminar will look at concepts of bioregionalism concentrating on the work of two award-winning North American poets, the US-American Gary Snyder and the Canadian writer Don McKay. We will examine Snyder's understading of "re-inhabitation" in selected essays and volumes of poetry as well as investigate McKay's notions of "home-making" and "poetic attention" in his poetological essays and selected poetry. All materials will be made available on Wordwise except for Gary Snyder's volume of poetry Turtle Island which students are expected to purchase. 

WS 2018/19, The New Sincerity & Postmodernism and After 

This seminar looks at postmodern approaches in literary theory, literature and culture, and films. In addition, we will deal with approaches after postmodernism such as minimalism, new modernism, or post-postmodernism. All texts will be made available on wordwise.

This seminar looks at the new sincerity as a phenomenon in literature and culture after postmodernism. Instigated by the American writer David Foster Wallace, new sincerity called into question postmodern irony and advocated the return to a more sincere representation of human troubles and emotions. At the same time, the new sincerity is aware of the impossibility of ever authentically representing one’s emotion so that the judgment of what is sincere in the end rests with the reader. We will begin with a theoretical foundation and then examine the phenomenon from the perspective of three women writers. Books to be read are Miranda July The First Bad Man, Sheila Heti How Should a Person Be, and Siri Hustvedt The Blazing World.

The format of the seminar slightly differs from standard as students will be asked to attend parts of the conference ”New Sincerity: Self-Expression in North American Culture,” which will take place in Jena January 24.-26.2019, organized by Felix Haase and Caroline Rosenthal. Students will have to write response papers to selected talks at the conference, given by scholars whose articles on the new sincerity we will have read in class. This is an excellent opportunity to meet literary critics and theorists first hand, and many of the books discussed will play a part in the given papers as well. Students’ response papers will not be presented at the conference but in the last session of classes on February in which we will be joined by Felix Haase’s BA seminar on the new sincerity and have a joined student mini-conference. To make up for the extra hours of the conference, 5 sessions of the class will be self-study sessions in which with no class meetings take place.

SoSe 2018, Nature Writing 

This class examines non-fictional classics of American nature writing, mostly from the 20th century. We will read texts by John Burroughs, John Muir, Aldo Leopold, Edward Abbey, Annie Dillard and others and look at defining characteristics and literary strategies of nature writing as well as at the effect it has had on the conservationist movement and the establishment of national parks. Most text excerpts will be made available in a reader to be puchased at the beginning of the semester. The course will incorporate elements of self-study and peer learning. It will also focus on various writing, reading, and presentation skills. 

WS 2017/18, Green Poetry and Ecofiction in Canadian Literature and Culture

This class will look at ecocriticism and ecofiction in Canada. Ecocriticism largely deals with the relationship of literature and the environment. While it addresses global phenomena, national characteristics such as a nation's idea of nature and the role nature has played for its self-definition as a nation, are crucial. We will first of all look at the specific characteristics of ecocriticism and green poetry in Canada and then look at poems, creative non-fiction and two novels. Poems, essays, and critical texts will be made available on wordwise. Books to be bought: John Valliant The Golden Spruce, Margaret Atwood Oryx and Crake, Emily St. John Mandel Station Eleven. Course requirements include a thorough reading and preparation of the texts, regular attendance and active participation. 

WS 2016/17, Concord: A Place of Romantic Ideas and Reforms

Concord, a small town in Massachusetts close to Boston, was the hub of transcendentalist ideas and romantic thought in 19th century America. Henry James later called it "the biggest little place in America" and compared its importance for American literary history to that of Weimar for German Literature. Ralph Waldo Emerson moved to Concord in 1835 and became the center of a group of philosophers and writers: Among them were Bronson Alcott, father of Louisa May Alcott, Nathanial Hawthorne, who composed some of his most famous short stories at the Old Manse in Concord, and Henry David Thoreau. Today, Thoreau is probably the most notable figure of the group. He made Concord famous because he wrote his seminal text Walden at Concord's Walden Pond and also chronicled the place in A Journey on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers, an account of a canoe trip he undertook with his brother John. We will read essays and short stories by all of the above mentioned writers and will also look at the impact of their theories today -- for instance on ecocriticism or pop culture. This is a book to be bought: Jeffrey S. Cramer (ed.) The Portable Thoreau, Penguin Classics 2012. Other texts will be made available on wordwise.  

WS 2016/17, Ecopoetry

Ecopoetry reacts to challenges nature -- and mankind as part of nature – faces in the age oft he anthropocene. Unlike nature poetry, eco-poetry does not observe and describe natural settings but acknowledges the interrelationship between human and non-human realms. It replaces an anthropocentric with an eco-centric worldview and sees humans not as superior to but as part of an ecosystem. Those ecological aspects are also reflected formally, as ecopoetry tries to express an ecological ethics in syntax and semantics. We will concentrate on two Pultzer Prize-winning contemporary American authors, Gary Snyder and Mary Oliver. The main focus will be on their poetry, Snyder’s Turtle Island and Danger on Peaks and Oliver’s American Primitive and Why I Wake Early. In addition, we will read essay on ecocriticism, ecopoetry, and the conception of wilderness in American culture. The poetry volumes must be bought, the essays will be made available on wordwise.

WS 2015/16, Magic Realism

This seminar deals with magic realism as a mode of representation in contemporary American literature and film. We will read and discuss critical texts on the concept and work on finding characteristics, forms, and functions of magic realism in novels and films. Novels we will discuss in class: Gale Anderson Dargatz The Cure for Death by Lightning, Jane Urquhart Away. Additional short stories and critical texts will be made availbale on wordwise. In addition, we will discuss two films.

WS 2012/13, North American Picaresque Novels

This seminar will investigate the tradition of the picaresque novel in a North American cultural context and especially focus on postmodern renditions of the picaro and picara figure. The rogue or picaro is a figure whose adventurous travels often border on the indecent or illegitimate and whose unruly behavior and transgression of boundaries defies social spaces and norms. It shares with postmodernism a certain playfulness, irony, and social critique as well as the urge to undermine existing symbolic orders and social structures. Various critics hence see the picaro/picara figure as the ancestor to the modern trickster figure. We will look at theories of the picaresque as well as at theories of space and mobility and closely examine four novels: Thomas Berger Little Big Man, George Bowering Caprice, Aritha van Herk No Fixed Address, Erika Lopez Flaming Iguanas.

WS 2012/13, Banned Books

Banning books is a form of censorship that has been practiced out of various motivations – religious, political, ethical, ideological – as long as books have existed. People have tried to gain control over the publication, distribution, and exegesis of texts at all times, especially over texts that challenged dominant social ideals, norms, and rules of a society at a given time. Often, such formerly banned books later became celebrated and highly regarded texts of the literary canon. We are going to look at a few examples of literary texts which underwent such a transformation, at Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, at Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita, at J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye, at Allan Ginsberg's Howl. Besides a close reading of the texts and a detailed look at their individual histories of publication and reception, the seminar will deal with general questions of book censorship.

WS 2011/12 Toni Morrison

This course deals with various works of African-American writer Toni Morrison. We will start out by looking at the only short story Morrison has written so far, "Recitatif," and continue by reading critical essay on and about Morrison's work. We will then explore narrative devices as well as recurring themes and motifs in three of her novels: Beloved, Jazz and Sula. All of them deal with the aftermaths of the traumatic experience of slavery but while one uses the mode of magic realism, the other draws on the African-American trickster figure while the next is an urban novel. We will determine commonalities between the novels as well as look at their different modes of representation.

SoSe 2011 Chicano and Latino Literature

This course will deal with Chicano/a literature, texts written by Mexican Americans, and Latino/a literature, texts written by Americans with origins in the Spanish-speaking countries of Latin America. We will focus on the borders and boundaries on which ethnic and national identities are constituted, altered, or negated and look at the specific aesthetic qualities that arise from these negotiations in the texts of various authors.

Required Reading: Selected Stories from Sandra Cisneros Woman Hollering Creek; Cristina Garcia Dreaming in Cuban; Junot Díaz The Brief Life of Oscar Wao; Julia Alvarez How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent

WS 2010/11, Toronto Literature

For a long time, the Canadian imagination disregarded cities and instead dwelled on the small town, the wilderness, or the far north. In recent decades, with the spatial turn in cultural studies and with the increase of urban transmigrations that have turned Canadian cities into cultural contact zones, this has been changing. This course deals with literary representations of urban spaces and an urban way of life in contemporary Toronto fiction. We will closely analyze three novels but also look at some poetry and short stories as well as at theories of space, cultural geography, and urban phenomena. Texts: Michael Ondaatje In the Skin of a Lion, Dionne Brand What We All Long For, Catherine Bush The Rules of Engagement.

SoSe 2010, Historiographic Metafiction

Since the historian Hayden White in the 1970s stressed the narrative quality of historiography, the distinction between fact and fiction as well as between historiography and the writing of novels has blurred. The genre of "Historiographic Metafiction" hence questions the authoritative voice of history by blending official records with non-historical stories and by providing different narrative versions of one and the same event. By blurring the boundaries of fact and imagination, the official and the un-official, these texts attempt to rewrite cultural history and at the same time reflect on the conditions of making any kind of narrative, may it be fictional or historical. We will read theoretical texts on historiography, on metafiction, and on narrative as well as deal with 3 novels and their adaptation to film.

Texts: John Fowles: The French Lieutnant´s Woman (film adaptation: screenplay Harold Pinter, dir. by Karel Reisz 1981); Margaret Atwood: The Handmaid´s Tale (film adaptation: screenplay Harold Pinter, dir. by Volker Schlöndorff 1990); Michael Ondaatje The English Patient (film adaptation and screenplay by Anthony Minghella 1996).

WS 2009/10 Eating Cultures: Food Practices and Cultural Identity in North American Literature and Film

Food Practices and eating orders play a major role in constituting and sustaining nations, cultures, and ethnicities. Besides studying theoretical texts on food and culture, eating orders and practices, we will look at an array of literary and filmic representations of such orders and at how they de/stabilize gendered and ethnic differences in a society.

Texts: Various narratives from The Norton Anthology of American Literature; Maxine Hong Kingston The Woman Warrior; Tessa McWatt This Body, Gail Anderson Dargatz The Cure for Death by Lightening. Additional texts will be announced in class.

Selection of interdisciplinary/team-tought courses Inhalt einblenden

SoSe 2020, Natur (de)kolonialisieren: Romantik, Naturkunde und indigenes Wissen in Nordamerika (with PD Dr. Peter Braun)

Im Seminar wollen wir einen neuen Blick auf die Epoche der Romantik und die mit ihr assoziierte Bedeutung der Natur werfen. Es soll um verschiedene kulturelle Systeme, Konzepte und Funktionen des Wissens über die Natur gehen und wie diese sich in Texten manifestieren. Der Fokus wird auf der Botanik und ihren klassifizierenden Praktiken liegen. Wir werden uns zunächst mit Carl von Linné beschäftigen sowie mit theoretischen Ansätzen zu Romantik, Natur und Kolonialismus. Des Weiteren werden wir in nicht-fiktionalen und fiktionalen Texten der frühen Siedler sowie der Romantiker kulturelle Praktiken der Aneignung der Natur analysieren und diese mit indigenen Naturauffassungen kontrastieren. Neben diesem literatur- und kulturwissenschaftlichen Fokus möchten wir auch dem Thema verbundene Einrichtungen und Sammlungen der FSU in den Blick nehmen, etwa das Ernst Haeckl Haus oder das Herbarium Haussknecht. Die ausgewählten Texte und Textpassagen werden den Teilnehmer*innen elektronisch zur Verfügung gestellt.

Die Romantik ist nicht nur die Epoche, in der die Natur zur primären Inspirationsquelle für die dichterische Schöpfungskraft wurde, sondern in der die Menschen sich Natur auf unterschiedlichste Weise aneigneten. Unter dem Einfluss von Carl von Linné stieg die Botanik zur Leitwissenschaft der damals neuen, auf Empirie gegründeten Naturkunde auf. Zugleich setzte mit der Auswanderung in die „Neue Welt“ in transatlantischer Perspektive ein nie zuvor dagewesener Austausch von Exemplaren und Pflanzensamen ein, der, vor allem auf dem nordamerikanischen Kontinent, auch zum Wettstreit um nationale und imperiale Größe beitrug.

Zudem kartographierten die europäischen Siedler den angeeigneten Raum neu und belegten alle Pflanzen und Tiere – unter Rückgriff auf die europäische Naturkunde – mit neuen, eigenen Namen. Die alten, indigenen Bezeichnungen wurden dadurch zum Verschwinden gebracht und mit ihnen auch das reiche Wissen, das damit verbunden war. Erst in jüngster Zeit gibt es unter dem Einfluss postkolonialer und ökokritischer Ansätze sowie des Erstarkens der „indigenous knowledges/sciences“ Bestrebungen, indigene Traditionen, Sprachen und Wissensbestände wieder zu beleben und den vorherrschenden Blick auf Natur zu „de-kolonialisieren“.

SoSe 2016, Natur erfahren: Aktualisierungen romantischer Ideen und Praktiken: Ein Projektseminar mit ePortfolio (with PD Dr. Peter Braun)

Sich der Natur auszusetzen und sie intensiv und allumfassend zu erfahren, ist eines der zentralen Motive nicht nur der europäischen, sondern mehr noch der amerikanischen Romantik. In der deutschsprachigen Literatur verkörpert Adalbert Stifter, so mit seiner Erzählung „Der Hochwald“ dieses Motiv; für die amerikanische ist es Henry David Thoreau, für den es Idee und Praxis zugleich ist. Sein Buch „Walden“ stellt eine fein komponierte Mischung aus Naturbeobachtung, Botanik, Lebensphilosophie und Literatur dar. Ausgehend von diesen beiden Texten werden wir in dem  Seminar nach zeitgenössischen Aktualisierungen der Idee und der Praxis suchen – in den Printmedien (Walden Magazin), in der Literatur (Gary Snyder), in der Musik (Nightwish) und im Film („Wild“ und „Ich bin dann mal weg“). Zugleich werden wir selbst – im Rahmen einer Tagesveranstaltung –  Natur erfahren und verschiedene Praktiken wie Beschreiben, Skizzieren und Sammeln ausprobieren, um sie reflektierend für die Analyse unserer „Gegenstände“ fruchtbar zu  machen.

Ferner wollen wir in dieser Veranstaltung – im Rahmen eines Pilotprojekts – eine innovative Lernmethode einsetzen: das elektronische Portfolio. Gegenüber der analogen Variante besitzt das ePortfolio mehr gestalterische Möglichkeiten. So ist es leichter, Bilder, Zeichnungen, Fotografien, Filmausschnitte und andere Materialien hochzuladen. Zudem gibt es die Möglichkeit, die Einträge gegenseitig zu lesen und zu kommentieren. Die Teilnehmenden bekommen einen entsprechenden Zugang und eine technische Einweisung und können so das Arbeiten mit einem ePortfolio ausprobieren.

WS 2013/14 Amerikanische und deutsche Lyrik von der Beatgeneration bis zum neuen Pluralismus (with Prof. Dirk von Petersdorff)

In diesem interdisziplinären Seminar werden ausgewählte Positionen der amerikanischen und deutschsprachigen Lyrik von den späten 1950er bis in die späten 1980er Jahre analysiert. Dabei soll es vor allem darum gehen, wie sich gesellschaftliche Veränderungen in der Formensprache der Lyrik niederschlagen. Gemeinsamkeiten und Differenzen der Entwicklungen in den beiden Kulturen werden hervortreten. An geeigneter Stelle wird es auch um direkte Rezeptionsbeziehungen gehen, etwa wenn Rolf Dieter Brinkmann die amerikanische Beat Poetry vermittelt und ästhetisch für sich nutzbar macht.

Teilnehmen können Master-Studierende und fortgeschrittene Lehramtsstudenten. Vorausgesetzt wird die Vertrautheit mit den grundlegenden Begriffen der Lyrikanalyse, die ansonsten zur Vorbereitung des Seminars wiederholt werden sollten. Um eine gleichmäßige Zulassung zu gewährleisten, wird die Auswahl der Teilnehmer über ‚Friedolin‘ nicht automatisch, sondern von uns ‚per Hand‘ vorgenommen. Die Unterrichtssprache ist deutsch. Die amerikanischen Gedichte werden aber natürlich im Original gelesen und analysiert. Eine Liste der Autoren und Autorinnen und der Themen für Arbeitsgruppen und Arbeitspapiere wird in der vorlesungsfreien Zeit versandt.

SoSe 2013, The West in the Canadian Literary and Cultural Imagination (with Excursion to Canada, with PD Dr. Stefanie Schäfer)

This seminar and student excursion will explore the concept of the West in Canadian literature and culture. In class, we will read and discuss literary texts and cultural concepts related to the West as well as explore techniques of research and research presentation.
Topics include cultural studies concepts such as masculinities, the carnivalesque, or symbolic landscapes; theory texts will be made available on wordwise. Students in the Lehramt program registered in the 'Fiction/Non-Fiction'-Modul will take a written final exam on July 16. Students in the master program registered in the ‘Advanced Research’ class will compile a portfolio.
From July 2nd to July 12th, we will ‘experience’ the Canadian West during an excursion to the Calgary Stampede in Canada. The biggest and probably most famous rodeo of the world, the Calgary Stampede is a yearly agricultural exhibition and festival with Chuckwagon Races, Rodeos, and Grand Stand Parades now in its 101st year. The program of the excursion involves two tasks for students: Presenting a mini-workshop about a cultural studies concept during a student conference at the University of Calgary and documenting the Stampede experience in a Stampede report that may consist of a creative writing project, blog, film diary, etc. Both of these projects will be prepared by students and mentored by Prof. Rosenthal and Dr. Schäfer in the course of the semester.
The class combines the study of literature and cultural concepts with the experience of the "real thing" during the 2013 Calgary Stampede.

Selection of Lectures & Lecture Series Inhalt einblenden

WS 2020/21, Nature Writing and Ecocriticism

This lecture series will deal with the relationship of nature, literature, and literary criticism. In the first part, I will examine seminal texts of American Nature Writing from the 19th century to the present which have changed our perception of and relationship to nature. I will start with transcendentalist texts, then examine texts of early conservationism, look at female voices and end this part with indigenous voices and a transition to Ecocriticism. While Nature Writing is a genre, Ecocriticism is a literary theory and cultural criticism which examines our place in and responsibility for nature. The second part of the lecture series consists of 5 individual lectures by members of the Ecocriticism Research Collective, all PhD students who write their dissertations within the field of Ecocriticism. Those lectures will explore how in the Anthropocene there are shifting boundaries between e.g. nature and culture, animate and inanimate, humans and animals as well as how recent texts subvert the gendered concepts of nature in earlier Nature Writing. They will also cover how Ecocriticism today is becoming more politicized and calls for changing our ways of being in the world.

SoSe 2017, Narratives of Crisis: The Anthropocene in Anglophone Literature and Culture 

Defined as an ecological period in which humans have the most important impact on the environment, the anthropocene poses challenging questions to literary and cultural studies. If in the anthropocene the distinction between nature and culture increasingly collapses we have to rethink our division between historiography and natural history as well as notions of the subject and of agency since the enlightenment. Movements like deep ecology or theories of ecocriticism and ecofeminism have called for replacing an anthropocentric with a biocentric worldview and for acting as a species instead of individual subjects. Such a changed worldview also calls into question national states and economic systems as we know them. In literature, the anthropocene generates new forms of narrative representation. As a potential ethical arena literature imagines the consequences of environmental destruction in dystopian and apocalyptic narratives of crisis.

The lecture series will investiagte the impact of the anthropocene from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. Speakers from different fields will address the topic from political, geographical, and literary angles. Introductory texts and scripts will be availbale on wordwise.

SoSe 2015, Interdisciplinary Perspectives: Movement in Literature

This lecture series looks at representations of movement in literature and film from the 17th century to the present. The depiction of movement in literature and film has given rise to distinct genres such as the Road Novel/Movie or the Picaresque Novel which interrelate the making of subjects and spaces via movement. Various literary figures, such as the detective, the flâneur, the nomad, the picaro, or the Western hero are defined by their respective manners, ways, and aims in moving through space. The lecture series will start out by defining movement and mobility as spatial concepts and by looking at how subjects make space by using it, by moving in and through it, in distinct ways. We look at symbolic spaces and at how literature contributes to investing space with meaning. The talks of the lecture series stem from the fields of geography, literature, film studies, and cultural studies and focus on specific genres and figures as well as on individual examples of books and films in which movement fosters the growth of the protagonist or is used to critique society.

WS 2013/14, The American Dream Revisited: Critical Perspectives on a National Idea

Als Ideologie avant la lettre wirkt der amerikanische Traum über die Jahrhunderte hinweg als aufklärerisches Idealbild eines Staates, dessen Bürger ihre Begabungen frei von sozialen Zwängen zum Besten hin entfalten können, als Hoffnungsträger für Millionen Einwanderer aus aller Welt, als Ursprungsidee, zu der in Krisenzeiten zurückgekehrt werden soll (Cullen 2006). Der American Dream mag angegriffen, umgedeutet oder gar verworfen werden als monopolisierende Großerzählung einer weißen männlichen Elite - sein Fortbestand durch alle Krisen der Repräsentation hinweg zeichnet sich jedoch kaum deutlicher ab als in der politischen und kulturellen Selbstdarstellung der USA in der Ära nach dem amerikanischen Jahrhundert, deren Beginn vielfach auf den 11. September 2001 datiert wird. Die Ringvorlesung wird sich der historisch-politisch-kulturellen Dimension des amerikanischen Traums aus transdiziplinärer Perspektive nähern. Vortragende, darunter auch von auswärts eingeladene renommierte Wissenschaftler_innen, aus der Amerikanistik, Geschichts- und Politikwissenschaft werden hierbei auf ausgewählte Aspekte, Bereiche und Wirkmechanismen und des amerikanischen Traums eingehen.

WS 2009/10, Survey of North American Literature, Culture, and Theory

This lecture course will introduce students to major periods, socio-cultural backgrounds, intellectual and epistemological traditions as well as theoretical approaches in American literature from its colonial beginnings to after Postmodernism. At salient points, America's national consciousness, its myths, symbols, and ideological framings will be compared to how Canada, in contrast, has imagined itself as a nation. While the two nations share many characteristics, they also differ vastly in their symbolic spaces, their literary canons, and in how they have managed difference and diversity.

Selection of B.A. Courses Inhalt einblenden

SoSe 2013, Native American and First Nations Canadian Literature

In this class, we will read texts by various First Nations authors from Canada as well as by Native American authors from the United Sates. The focus of this course will be on the close reading analysis of literary texts, we will, however, also read two theoretical essays. There will be no oral presentations in this class; instead students are required to keep a reading diary throughout the class in which they record their reading responses to each text on 2-3 pages. All of the stories, poems, and essays will be provided. Texts to be bought: Drew Hayden Taylor The Baby Blues.

SoSe 2011, American Narratives after Postmodernism

This class deals with literature 'post' or 'past' the 'post', with texts written in the yet unspecified period after Postmodernism. Both as a term and a period postmodernism has been questioned because it refutes certain principles and aesthetic forms of modernism while still using them as points of departure. One characteristic of the period after Postmodernism is a return to a more realistic, coherent narrative mode, albeit with a postmodern awareness for the temporary nature of human existence, and to the representation of private, quotidian lives. Critics employ terms like 'Neo-Realism' or 'New Modernism' to describe the period of post-Postmodern literature. In class we will deal with some short stories by Raymond Carver, with some theoretical texts, and with two novels, Jonathan Franzen's Freedom and Jeffrey Eugenides's Middlesex.

Research Interests

  • Mobility Studies
  • Transatlantic Romanticism 
  • Actualizations of Romantic Ideas (Henry David Thoreau as a Cultural Icon, Urban Birding, Mindfulness)
  • Nature Writing
  • The Anthropocene in North American Literature and Culture (Gary Snyder, Don McKay, Bioregionalism and Ecopoetry, Ecocriticism)
  • Settler Colonialism & Indigenous Knowledges 
  • Comparative North American Studies (Symbolic Spaces, National Imaginaries, The Canadian West, Mapping)
  • Objects and Material Culture
Caroline Rosenthal, Univ.-Prof. Dr.
Caroline Rosenthal
Telefon
+49 3641 9-44521
Fax
+49 3641 9-44502
Raum 624
Ernst-Abbe-Platz 8
07743 Jena
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