Dr. John Hoffmann

John Hoffmann
Foto: John Hoffmann


+49 6421 28-24634 +49 6421 28-24992 john.hoffmann@ 1 Wilhelm-Röpke-Straße 6
35032 Marburg
W|02 Geisteswissenschaftliche Institute (Raum: 05A03 bzw. +5A03)


Philipps-Universität Marburg Germanistik und Kunstwissenschaften (Fb09) Medienwissenschaft

I am a comparatist with a particular interest in cultural contact between Germany and Anglophone countries in the modernist period (1890-1955). My work ranges between film and literature, and I have published articles in Film History, New Literary History, Modernism/modernity, and diacritics. Currently, my thinking is organized around two main areas of research: a study of aesthetics and anthropology from the Enlightenment to the Popular Front; and a project funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) titled Beyond the Border: Transnational Cinema between Germany and Great Britain.

My DFG-project uses the idea of an “adversary” as a means of refiguring links between Anglo-German culture from 1939 to 1955. Focusing on non-fiction film, I want to show how two countries with a fraught common history turned away from past antipathies to assume new roles in a post-war global order. The eventual book will have chapters on propaganda, documentary, advertising, and travelogues, thereby moving from images where adversarial content is most overt––propaganda films––to visual attempts to reconfigure the relationship politically, in genres like documentary and the newsreel, economically in advertising films, and culturally through travelogues that present a novel spatial order conceived in trans- or even anti-national terms. Engaging with the writings of the Frankfurt School, Carl Schmitt, and world-systems theorists, I want to understand how cultural artifacts become vehicles for adversarial dynamics––rupture, struggle, antagonism, animus––while at the same time seeing how those disjunctions are then sutured in the cultural sphere.

In addition to the DFG funding for Beyond the Border, my work has been supported by grants from the Modernist Studies Association, the Leonard and Helen R. Stulman Program in Jewish Studies at Johns Hopkins University, the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Zukunftskolleg at the University of Konstanz, and the Max Kade Center for Modern German Thought.


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  • Inhalt ausklappen Inhalt einklappen Akademischer WerdegangAkademischer Werdegang

    • 2018 | Ph.D. English, Johns Hopkins University
    • 2014 | M.A. English, Johns Hopkins University
    • 2011 | M.A. Humanities, The University of Chicago
    • 2008 | B.A. Liberal Arts, St. John’s College
  • Inhalt ausklappen Inhalt einklappen VeröffentlichungenVeröffentlichungen

    • “The Volk against Fascism: Socialist Realism and the Aesthetics of Expressionism.” New Literary History 51.3 (Summer 2020)
    • “Animating the Nations: Julius Pinschewer’s Anglophone Cinema.” Film History 30.3 (Fall 2018)
    • “The Optics of Orientation: Walter Benjamin and Mikhail Kaufman in Moscow.”
      Modernism/modernity 24.4 (November 2017)
    • “Kant’s Aesthetic Categories: Race in the Critique of Judgment.” diacritics 44.2 (2016)
    • “Forged Identities: Race and Nationhood 1700-2000.” In Fakes, Lies, and Forgeries: Rare Books and Manuscripts from the Arthur and Janet Freeman Bibliotheca Fictiva Collection, edited by Earle Havens, 103-114. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Sheridan Libraries, 2014.
    • Translation of Victor Zhirmunsky’s, Reim (selections). The Chicago Review 57.3/4 (Winter 2013)
  • Inhalt ausklappen Inhalt einklappen FörderungenFörderungen

      • Eigene Stelle. Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, 2019
      • Research Grant, Modernist Studies Association, 2019
      • Research Fellowship, Zukunftskolleg, University of Konstanz, 2019
      • Research Grant, The Leonard and Helen R. Stulman Program in Jewish Studies, Johns Hopkins University, 2017
      • Dean’s Teaching Fellowship, Johns Hopkins University, 2017
      • Long-Term Research Grant (ten months), Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst, 2015-16
      • Research Grant, Modernist Studies Association, 2016
      • Travel Grant, Max Kade Center for Modern German Thought, 2015
      • Owen Scholars Fellowship, Johns Hopkins University, 2012-2015
      • Denis Family Curatorial Fellowship, Sheridan Libraries Special Collections, 2013-14
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