My trajectory as a student of languages, literature, philosophy, and anthropology has taken me from Freiburg, where I studied as an undergraduate, to Berlin, for a Master's at the Humboldt University, and now on to New York to start work on a dissertation project. In Freiburg, my final thesis dealt with the problematics of urbanity, cosmopolitanism, and naming in Salman Rushdie's Bombay trilogy, and was the recipient of an award from the Association for Anglophone Postcolonial Studies (GAPS). Since then, my interests have simultaneously moved in two distinct directions.
First, towards questions of modern subjectivity, and the tensions between humanist and anti/post-humanist positions in 19th and 20th century anglophone and German literature, criticism, and continental philosophy. Of particular interest are modern(ist) literary attempts at reconciling the category of the individual with aspirations to egalitarian collectivity. In this regard, the poetics and politics of the American transcendentalists are of central concern to me, as is the work of Hannah Arendt and Edward Said. It is the latter that led me to take up Said's much-contested humanism in my Master's thesis.
Second, partly a consequence of my involvement in minority and refugee activism in Germany, has been a preoccupation with the issue of citizenship/status as it has met identity politics in progressive movements in Berlin. Moving to the city just as the refugee protest movement was taking off in 2012, I was fortunate to witness (and play an infinitesimal part in) the development of an extremely important progressive movement in contemporary Europe. In a recent paper in the journal Citizenship Studies, Wanda Vrasti and I explore the implications of the sans papiers struggle for political theory.
At different stages in my academic career, I have been the recipient of scholarships from the European Commission, the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, and, most recently, New York University.