Dr. Katharina Gerund

Dr. Katharina Gerund

Department of English and American Studies
Chair of American Studies (Prof. Dr. Paul)

Room: Room C 406
Bismarckstraße 1c
91054 Erlangen

Office Hours

Aug. 4, 10am-12noon
Aug. 25, 10am-12noon
Sept. 15, 10am-12noon
(ZOOM; please register via e-mail)

Research Interests

Americanization, Reeducation, and Cultural Mobility
Affect Studies, Public Feeling, and Sentimentalism
Gender Studies and Feminist Theory
African American Literature and Culture
Popular Culture (esp. film and TV series)

Current Research Projects

Upcoming Activities

  • Virtual workshop “Beyond National Character? Identity Formation in the Context of Postwar Reeducation” at FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg, Nov. 5-6, 2020 (organized with Akino Oshiro as part of the project “Reeducation Revisited”)
  • “How to Get Away with Murder.” TV talk at DAI Nürnberg and vhs Erlangen Club INTERNATIONAL, Jan. 13 & 14, 2021.
  • “Unofficial Ambassadors? Military Spouses in the Transatlantic World.” CITAS Lecture Series 2020/2021, U Regensburg, Jan. 18, 2021.


Dr. phil. in American Studies, Bremen University (2012, summa cum laude)
M.A. in American Studies, Theater and Media Studies, Psychology, FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg (2007)


  • 2015-present: assistant professor of American Studies at FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg
  • 2012-2015: coordinator of the doctoral program “Presence and Tacit Knowledge” (funded by the DFG) at FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg
  • 2009-2011: lecturer in American Studies and coordinator of the interdisciplinary MA program “The Americas – Las Américas – Les Amériques” at HHU Düsseldorf
  • 2008: lecturer in American Studies at FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg and at Bremen University

Fellowships & Grants

  • 2019: invited participant of the Villa Vigoni Dialogue on “Civil Religion and Civil Sentimentalism: Cultural and Political Imaginaries of Order and Belonging”
  • 2018: participant of The Mellon School for Theater and Performance Research at Harvard University (“Public Humanities”); fellowship of the Bavarian American Academy (BAA)
  • 2018: invited participant of the German-Israeli Frontiers of the Humanities Forum 2018, Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
  • 2016: travel grant of the Faculty of the Humanities, Social Sciences, and Theology at FAU
  • 2013 and 2011: DAAD travel grant
  • 2012: Yale University Post-Graduate Research Fellowship of the BAA
  • 2012, 2010, and 2007: BAA fellowship for the Annual Summer Institute/Summer Academy
  • 2010-2014: member of the research network “Black Diaspora and Germany” (funded by the DFG)
  • 2010: fellowship, Heidelberg Center for American Studies (HCA), Spring Academy
  • 2007-2009: doctoral fellowship from Bremen University
  • 2004-2005: DAAD fellowship for graduate studies, Afro-American Studies, University of Wisconsin, Madison

Service to the Profession

  • member of the editorial advisory board of WiN: The EAAS Women’s Network Journal (2017-)
  • reader for COPAS: Current Objectives of Postgraduate American Studies, MELUS: Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States, Journal of American Studies, Neohelicon: Acta Comparationis Litterarum Universarum, The Yearbook of Transnational History, Papers on Language and Literature, Anglistik, Atlantic Studies, and ZfK – Zeitschrift für Kulturwissenschaften.
  • elected member of the “bylaws committee” of the Collegium for African American Research (2016-2017)
  • assistant editor of the annual bulletin (Mitteilungsblatt) of the German Association for American Studies (2015-2017)
  • member of 2007/08 PGF team; co-organizer of the 2007 Postgraduate Forum of the GAAS at FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg and of the “PGF Workshop” at the 55th Annual Conference of the GAAS at Heidelberg, May 2008 (with Alexandra Ganser and Christina Hein); co-editor of COPAS 9 (2008).

Community Involvement

  • lectures for high school students on “Civil Rights & the Black Power Movement,” “Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement,” “Race Relations in the Age of Trump,” “Black Hollywood” and “Representations of Slavery in Contemporary US Culture”
  • film & TV talks at Club International (vhs) Erlangen, at the German-American Institute Nürnberg, at Casablanca cinema Nürnberg, at Filmhaus Nürnberg and at Filmgalerie im Leeren Beutel Regensburg
  • teacher training seminars on American TV culture, the American presidency, populism and popular culture, race relations in the US, public feeling, and prison culture
  • public lectures, workshops, and media appearances on topics ranging from (contemporary) US-American politics, activism, and popular culture (esp. film and TV) to Americanization, reeducation, and the dynamics of race/gender in the transatlantic world


Authored Books

Edited Volumes

Journal Articles

Book Contributions



  • “Frank Mehring. The Democratic Gap: Transcultural Confrontations of German Immigrants and the Promise of American Democracy (Winter, 2014).” Amerikastudien/American Studies 63.4 (2018). Web.
  • “Daniel Stein. Music Is My Life: Louis Armstrong, Autobiography, and American Jazz. Jazz Perspectives. Ann Arbor: U of Michigan P, 2012.” Amerikastudien/American Studies 62.1 (2017).
  • “Kristian Buchna. Ein klerikales Jahrzehnt? Baden-Baden (2014) and Kathleen R. Hooper. Designing Democracy. Frankfurt a. M. (2014),” Jahrbuch Extremismus & Demokratie. Ed. Uwe Backes, Alexander Gallus, and Eckhard Jesse. Baden-Baden: Nomos, 2015. 394-395.
  • “Ivo Ritzer. Wie das Fernsehen den Krieg gewann.” rezensionen:kommunikation:medien, Dec. 3, 2015.
  • “Martin Lüthe. Color-Line and Crossing-Over: Motown and Performances of Blackness in 1960s American Culture. Trier: WVT, 2011.” Anglistik: International Journal of English Studies 24.1 (2013): 211-213.
  • Racism, Slavery, and Literature. Ed. Wolfgang Zach and Ulrich Pallua. Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 2010.” Anglia: Zeitschrift für englische Philologie 130.2 (2012): 310-313.
  • “Jan Philipp Burgard. Von Obama siegen lernen oder “Yes, We Gähn!”? Der Jahrhundertwahlkampf und die Lehren für die politische Kommunikation in Deutschland. Baden-Baden: Nomos, 2011.” ZAA: Zeitschrift für Anglistik und Amerikanistik 2 (2012): 203-205.
  • “Carlyle Van Thompson. Black Outlaws: Race, Law, and Male Subjectivity in African American Literature and Culture. New York: Peter Lang, 2010.” Anglia: Zeitschrift für englische Philologie 129.3-4 (2011): 582-585.
  • “Stephanie Brown and Éva Tettenborn, eds. Engaging Tradition, Making It New: Essays on Teaching Recent African American Literature. Newcastle, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2008.” Amerikastudien / American Studies 55.4 (2010): 775-777.
  • “Maria I. Diedrich and Jürgen Heinrichs, eds. From Black to Schwarz: Cultural Crossovers between African America and Germany. FORECAAST 18. Münster: LIT, 2010.” CAAR Reviews (2010).

Workshops & Conferences (Selection)

  • American Home Front(s). Workshop/Student Conference at the Bavarian American Academy in Munich in cooperation with LMU Munich and the University of Regensburg, July 20-21, 2019.
  • “Images of War: U.S. Popular Culture as Militainment.” Workshop at the 66th Annual Meeting of the GAAS, Hamburg, June 2019 (with Mareike Spychala).
  • “Army Wives, Astronauts, and Cowgirls: Gendered Mobility in American Culture.” Panel at the 2018 EBAAS conference, London, April 2018 (with Alexandra Ganser).
  • Reeducation Revisited: Strategies, Actors, Institutions in Transnational and Comparative Perspective. International Conference at the German-American Institute Nuremberg, Sept. 2017 (with Heike Paul and Anne Schenderlein/GHI Washington).
  • “Transnational Feminism and American Studies.” Workshop at the EAAS Biennial Conference at Constanta, Romania, April 2016 (with Silvia Schultermandl).
  • Public Feeling in Global Contexts. International Conference at FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg, April 2016 (with Heike Paul).
  • “Tacit Knowledge.” Workshop at the 62nd Annual Conference of the German Association for American Studies, Bonn, May 2015 (with Heike Paul).
  • American Studies in a Transatlantic Perspective: Critical Regionalism in Politics and Culture. 6th BAA Summer Academy at Texas State University, San Marcos. May/June 2014 (with Heike Paul, Jessica Pliley, Meike Zwingenberger et al.).
  • “Tacit Knowledge and the Politics of the Performative.” Workshop at the Conference Judith Butlers Theoretische Interventionen – Grundlagen, Effekte, Kritik at FAU, April 2014 (with Heike Paul).
  • (Extra-)Ordinary Presence: Social Configurations and Cultural Repertoires. International Conference of the DFG doctoral program “Präsenz und implizites Wissen” at FAU, Nov. 2013 (with Markus Gottwald, Kay Kirchmann, Heike Paul, et al.).
  • American Studies in a Transatlantic Perspective: Critical Regionalism in Politics and Culture. 5th BAA Summer Academy at Munich and Nuremberg. May/June 2013 (with Heike Paul and Meike Zwingenberger).
  • Cultural Encounters between Germans and Americans after World War II: New Perspectives on ‘Reeducation,’ ‘Reorientation,’ Americanization (1945-65). International Conference at FAU, June 2010 (with Heike Paul).
  • Critical Perspectives: ‘Turns,’ Trends, and Theories. 9th International and Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference at FAU, Nov. 2009 (with Carmen Dexl, Michael Gubo, Martin Kypta, and Florian Öchsner).
  • Re/Visions of American Studies. Graduate Conference at Bremen University, July 2009 (with Konstantin Butz and Carsten Junker).

Conference Papers & Invited Guest Lectures (Selection)

  • “Preemptive Propaganda? Das Militär als Para(llel)gesellschaft in populärkulturellen Repräsentationen des ‘War on Terror.'” Conference “Paragesellschaften. Imaginationen – Inszenierungen – Interaktionen,” FAU Erlangen-Nuernberg, Feb. 10-11, 2020.
  • “Home Front Autobiographies: Military Spouses and the ‘War on Terror’.” Guest Lecture at the University of Bochum, Jan. 21, 2020.
  • “Frauen und Aktivismus in der Ära Trump.” Workshop at HFF Munich, Jan. 31, 2020.
  •  “J’ai deux amours….: Josephine Bakers Paris.” ‘Framing Paris’: Medienreflexion und künstlerische Selbstinszenierung in den 1920er Jahren. Workshop at Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Dec. 3-4, 2019.
  • “(Un)Learning Racism? The Racial Logics of US Reeducation Efforts in Postwar Germany.” HLCS Conference at Radboud University (Nijmegen, Netherlands), Nov. 14-15, 2019.
  • “Home Front Autobiographies of the ‘War on Terror’: Narrative Liminality, Tacit Knowledge, and Affective Labor.” Poster Presentation. Conference: Beyond Narrative: Literature, Culture, and the Borderlands of Narrativity. University of Leipzig, Oct. 2019.
  • “‘Glücksversprechen Militär: Militärfamilien in der amerikanischen Populärkultur.” Conference: Glücksversprechen. Inszenierungen und Instrumentalisierungen alternativer Lebensentwürfe in den Gegenwartskulturenat FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg, Sept. 2019.
  • “Home Front Sentimentality: Military Spouses in Contemporary TV Series.” BAA Summer Academy, DAI Nuremberg, May 2019.
  • “Happy Home Front Heroines? Military Spouses in Contemporary TV Shows.” U of Graz, March 2019.
  • Army Wives and The Unit: Military Spouses in U.S.-American TV Series.” Regensburg European American Forum (REAF), U of Regensburg, Jan. 2019.
  • “The Im/Mobilities of Military Spouses in Post-9/11 US Culture.” 45th Austrian Association for American Studies Conference “American Im/Mobilities”, Vienna, Nov. 2018.
  • Panelist: “International Committee Talkshop II: Transnational Teaching from Emergency to Emerging Projects.” American Studies Association’s Conference “States of Emergence,” Atlanta, GA, Nov. 2018.
  • “‘When They Call You a Terrorist’: Angela Davis’ Activism from Black Power to #BlackLivesMatter.” U of Tuebingen, July 2018.
  • “Public Feeling on the Home Front: The ‘Waiting Wives’ of US Wars Abroad.” Annual Conference of the GAAS, FU Berlin, May 2018.
  • “African American Women, Sentimental Political Storytelling, and Contemporary TV Culture.” Marburg U, May 2018.
  • “Military (Im)Mobilities: Women and War in Siobhan Fallon’s Short Stories.” EBAAS conference, London, April 2018.
  • “Happy Home Front Heroines? Army Wives in Post-9/11 American Culture.” Workshop “American Domesticities,” U of Zurich, Nov. 2017 and Annual Conference of the Historians in the GAAS “Heroism and the Heroic in American History,” Tutzing, Feb. 2018.
  • “Angela Davis and the Challenge of Prison Abolition.” U of Vienna, April 2017.
  • “The Affective Labor of Army Wives.” Second Biennial EAAS Women’s Network Symposium at Lausanne, March 2017.
  • “Sentimental Political Storytelling and Black Femininities in Contemporary Television Series.” FSU Jena, Nov. 2016.
  • “Home, Family, and Domesticity in Army Wives.” Annual conference of the American Studies Association, Denver, CO, Nov. 2016.
  • “Contested Canons? Toni Morrison and the Nobel Prize in Germany.” Bamberg U, June 2016.
  • “Public Feeling, Tacit Knowledge, and Civil Sentimentalism in American Popular Culture.” International conference “Public Feeling in Global Contexts,” FAU, April 2016 (with Heike Paul).
  • “Political Solidarity and the Racial Logics of Sisterhood.” U of Regensburg, Jan. 2016.
  • “The Fugitive Figure in African American Autobiography.” Lecture series “Movement in Literature,” FSU Jena, June 2015.
  • “Angela Davis, Black Power und das ‘andere Amerika’ in beiden deutschen Staaten.” Conference “Feinde, Freunde, Fremde? Deutsche Perspektiven auf die USA,” Akademie für politische Bildung, Tutzing, May 2015.
  • “‘Wien, Wien – Josephine”: Josephine Baker in the Context of European (African) American Studies.” European American Studies Workshop by the Bavarian American Academy and Dartmouth College, Munich, May 2015.
  • “‘America’s Germany’? Die amerikanische Reeducation-Politik der Nachkriegszeit.” 5th International Conference on Holocaust Research “Afterwards – An Experiential History of the Holocaust 1945-1949,” Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung, Berlin, Jan. 2015.
  • “Sisterhood Is Regional? US-American Women’s Activism between the Global and the Local.” Keynote lecture, 6th BAA Summer Academy “American Studies in a Transatlantic Perspective: Critical Regionalism in Politics and Culture,” Texas State U (San Marcos, TX), June 2014.
  • “The Futures of Feminism and Black Studies: Race, Gender, and the Politics of Sisterhood.” Conference “The Futures of Black Studies: Historicity, Objectives and Methodologies, Ethics,” Bremen U, April 2014.
  • “Angela Davis in East and West Germany.” Fulbright American Studies Summer Session, HU Berlin, Aug. 2013.
  • “Transracial Feminist Alliances? Audre Lorde and (West) German Women.” Head West: British Association for American Studies 58th Annual Conference, U of Exeter, April 2013; The Lady Doth Protest: Mapping Feminist Movements, Moments, and Mobilisations – Biennial FWSA conference, U of Nottingham, June 2013.
  • “Josephine Baker’s Routes and Roots: (Trans)National Affiliations in the Atlantic World.” 10th International Conference of the Collegium for African American Research – Dreams Deferred, Promises and Struggles: Perceptions and Interrogations of Empire, Nation, and Society by Peoples of African Descent, Agnes Scott College (Decatur/Atlanta, GA), March 2013.
  • “Cultural Mobility and Jazz Age Popular Culture: Josephine Baker in/and Germany.” Workshop “Popular Culture on the Move: Transnational Aspects of the Popular in America Through the Centuries,” Carl von Ossietzky U Oldenburg, Oct. 2012.
  • “Sisterhood across the Color Line? Audre Lorde, German Women and Feminist Solidarities.” Brown Bag Lunch Talk at Gilder Lehrman Center, Yale U, New Haven, Sept. 2012.
  • “Contested Appropriations: Angela Davis and Black Power in West Germany.” Leibniz U Hannover, June 2012.
  • “The Democratic Promises of US-American Feminisms.” BAA Summer Academy in Washington, D.C., May 2012.
  • “Happy Housewives and Single Girls? (Post)Feminism and Gender Politics in Mad Men.” Lecture Series “TV Seriality,” TU Dresden, Jan. 2012.
  • “Audre Lorde, Afro-Germans, and Black Diaspora Studies in Germany: The Challenges and Chances of Studying African American Culture Abroad.” The State of African American and African Diaspora Studies: Methodology, Pedagogy, and Research. Conference at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and the CUNY Institute for Research on the African Diaspora in the Americas and the Caribbean, New York City, Jan. 2011.
  • “Resistance, Solidarity, Desire: Black Power in West Germany.” BAA Summer Academy, Wayne State U (Detroit, MI), May 2010.
  • “GIs, Jazz, and Civil Rights: African American Culture in Postwar Germany.” HCA Spring Academy 2010, Heidelberg, March 2010.
  • “Fashion Icon, Intellectual, Political Prisoner: Angela Davis in the West-German Imagination.” African American Civil Rights and Germany in the Twentieth Century, conference at Vassar College (Poughkeepsie, NY), Oct. 2009.
  • “The (Un)Making of Political Fugitives in the Black Power Era.” Imagining Alternative Mobilities? Pirates, Drifters, Fugitives, international conference at FAU, June 2009.
  • “Mapping the Road to Freedom: C. Eric Lincoln’s Civil Rights Poetry.” 8th International Conference of the Collegium for African American Research, Bremen U, March 2009.


  • Grundseminar Culture (multiple times)
  • Aufbauseminar Culture (multiple times)
  • Lektürekurs American Civilization (multiple times)
  • Lektürekurs (Lehramt, nicht vertieft)
  • Political Melodrama in US Culture (PS)
  • The American TV Family (PS)
  • Canadian Literature and the Black Atlantic (PS)
  • From Page to Screen? Theories and Practices of Adaptation in US-American Culture (PS)
  • “Black is Beautiful!:” The Black Power Movement in Its Cultural Context (PS)
  • Black Feminism(s): Audre Lorde, Alice Walker, Toni Morrison (PS)
  • Writing Women in 19th Century America (PS)
  • “Live from the Plantation:” American Slavery in the 19th Century (PS)
  • “On the Move:” (Cultural) Mobility in North America (HS)
  • Asian American Studies (HS)
  • From the KKK to the Alt-Right: White Supremacy in American Culture (HS, with Heike Paul)
  • Critical Prison Studies (HS, incl. a two-day workshop at the German-American Institute in Nuremberg organized in cooperation with CU Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, the U of Regensburg, and the Bavarian American Academy in Munich)
  • Home Front USA: American Culture and Society in Times of War (HS, incl. a two-day workshop at the Bavarian American Academy in Munich organized in cooperation with LMU Munich and the U of Regensburg)
  • The US Presidency in Politics, Media, and Popular Culture (HS)
  • Forschungskolloquium der Amerikanistik/American Studies (with Klaus Lösch/Heike Paul)
  • Stepford Wives, Mad Men, and Little Children: Suburbia in American Literature and Culture (HS, Düsseldorf)
  • Doing Time: African American Prison Writing from Chester Himes to Mumia Abu-Jamal (HS, Düsseldorf)
  • Adaptation(s): American Literature on Screen (HS, Düsseldorf)
  • “Framing Blackness:” African Americans and/in Hollywood (HS, Düsseldorf)
  • Transatlantic Cultural Mobility: Immigration, Slavery, Americanization (HS, Düsseldorf)
  • American Road Narratives (HS, Düsseldorf)
  • The South in American Literature (HS, Düsseldorf)
  • “The Americas – Las Américas – Les Amériques” (HS, Düsseldorf, multiple times)
  • Selected Fiction: Virginia Woolf (HS, Bremen)