ASL Welcomes Prof. Katja Kanzler as New Chair for American Literature

American Studies Leipzig is delighted to announce that Prof. Katja Kanzler has assumed the position of Professor for American Literature at the institute. As previously indicated, Prof. Kanzler accepted Leipzig University’s offer to join ASL earlier this year, and she will start teaching classes in our BA and MA programs as the winter semester begins this week.

Prof. Kanzler received her PhD and habilitation at Leipzig, and she previously held the position of Chair for North American Literature at TU Dresden for eight years. Along with numerous articles, her 2004 monograph Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations: The Multicultural Evolution of Star Trek has positioned Prof. Kanzler as a leading scholar in popular culture studies in Germany, while her The Kitchen and the Factory: Spaces of Women’s Work and the Negotiation of Social Difference in Antebellum American Literature established her credentials as a scholar of gender, class, and nineteenth-century American literature, with a particular ability to put into dialog presumably disparate cultural arenas. In 2010, her “Architecture, Writing, and Vulnerable Signification in Herman Melville’s ‘I and My Chimney’” won the Best Article Award of the German Association for American Studies (DGfA). In recognition of her interdisciplinary abilities, the German Research Foundation (DFG) has funded a project on military blogs conducted under her supervision as well as a project on the “Invective Mode in Contemporary US-American Television” as part of a larger Collaborative Research Center. She was recently elected a member of the Advisory Board of the German Association for American Studies, and she will hold the national keynote address at the DGfA’s upcoming annual meeting in Hamburg. Adding a host of new academic impulses and scholarly undertakings to ASL’s rich profile, her appointment is expected to further raise the institute’s reputation in Germany and internationally.

Prof. Kanzler will be involved in a number of research and outreach activities during the winter semester, among them meetings of the Collaborative Research Center on “Invectivity”; a research initiative on serial television organizing a conference on The Handmaid’s Tale in Dresden in November and another one in Leipzig next year; and a panel discussion on the potentials and limits of political satire in the age of Trump. In the upcoming winter term, she will teach in the LC-I module, the project module, and in several MA-level modules.

Prof. Kanzler will hold a public inaugural lecture in December (more information to follow).