Katharina Donn

researching the literature of the present




PhD       “Post-9/11 U.S. – American Trauma Literature”

Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes (National Academic Foundation, Germany) /Universität Augsburg


State Examinations     (equivalent to a UK Masters of Education; double degree)

History | English Literature & Language | Extension Subject: Sociology & Politics

Universität Augsburg


European Exchange at Zurich University and London Metropolitan University

Professional Qualifications: 


Qualified Teacher Status

TES Institute

Teaching Appointments in Higher Education

07/2016 – 08/2016 and 07/2018-08/2018

University of Texas at Austin, Department of English: Visiting Professor

“Postmodern Literature” (BA)

09/2011 – 2018

Universität Augsburg, Department of American Studies: Associate Lecturer

Module Leader (BA American Studies, BA English Literature, MA American Studies)

  • “Modernist Poetry and Poetics” (MA)
  • “Poetry and Postmodernism” (MA)
  • “American Literature and the City” (BA)
  • “Literatures of the Early Republic” (BA)
  • “Narratives of Trauma” (BA and MA)
  • “Embodiment in American Literature” (BA)

Research Grants


Universität Augsburg: Post-Doctoral Research Grant (€ 57.600)

“Risking thought. Transatlantic Practices of Transgressive Prose Writing in Modernism.”


Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes: PhD fellowship (€ 45.000)

“Post-9/11 Trauma Literature.” Full funding and membership in a nation-wide, interdisciplinary research network.


Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes: Co-investigator (€ 1.500)

“Loops – an Interdisciplinary Experiment”

Prizes and Fellowships


University College London, Institute of Advanced Studies:  Visiting Research Fellow

03/2015 – 07/2015

University of Westminster,  Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture: Visiting Research Fellow


Universität Augsburg: Dissertation Prize


Universität Augsburg: Prize for the Internationalization of the Humanities


BAAS / Eccles Centre for American Studies: European Postgraduate Award


Transitions Center for International Research, NYU: Research Fellow

Teaching Appointments in Secondary Education

01/2021 – present 

Emanuel School, London: Deputy Head of English, Head of English


Northbridge House Secondary and Sixth Form, Canonbury, London: Teacher of English, Acting Head of English


The Brilliant Club, London: Post-Doctoral Tutor


Hockerill Anglo-European College, Bishop’s Stortford: Teacher for the IB Diploma

Positions of Responsibility

H-Net American studies: Review Editor

Litro: Literary Magazine – Stories to Transport you: Associate Editor (“Why the Humanities Matter”)

U.S. Studies Online (the British Association for American Studies): Editor for European Relations

‘New Books in German’: Reader and Reviewer

Peer-reviewed Publications


A Poetics of Trauma after 9/11: Representing Vulnerability in a Digitized Present. London and New York: Routledge (2016).

The Politics of Literature in a Divided 21st Century. London and New York: Routledge (2020).

Articles and Chapters

Forthcoming: “Bodies in Motion: Angela Rohr and Mina Loy’s Prose Fragments.” Feminist Modernist Studies, October 2021. 

 “The Cyborg in The Tigresses’ Hide: Angela Carter’s Postmodern Ecologies.” Ludics and Laughter as Feminist Aesthetic:  Angela Carter at Play. Edited by Jennifer Gustar, Sarah Gamble and Caleb Sivyer. Sussex Academic Press. 2020.

“Neoliberal Breakdowns: the Biopolitics of the Monstrous.” Alluvium. 21st Century Writing. 2019.

“Response: Re-Thinking Borderlines Ecologies: A Literary Ethics of Exposure.” Ecocriticism, Ecology, and the Cultures of Antiquity: The Environmental Humanities and the Ancient World. Edited by Christopher Schliephake. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books. 2017.

“Crisis of Knowledge: Trauma in Sorrows of an American.” Zones of Focused Ambiguity in Siri Hustvedt’s Works: Interdisciplinary Essays. Edited by J.Hartmann, C. Marks, et.al. Berlin: Walter De Gruyter, 2016.

“Beyond the Wasteland: An Ecocritical Reading of Modernist Trauma Literature.” Handbook of Ecocriticism and Cultural Ecology. Edited by Hubert Zapf. Berlin: Walter De Gruyter, 2016.

“’Icons of a more Innocent Age’?  Graphic Narratives after 9/11.” Frightful Witnessing: The Rhetoric and (Re)Presentation of Fear, Horror and Terror. Edited by B. Kattelman and M. Hodalska. Interdisicplinary Press: 2014.

“The Multidirectionality of Memory: Networks of Trauma in Post – 9/11 Literature.” Miscelánea: A Journal of English and American Studies. Dec. 2014: 15-34.

“Migration and the Grotesque in Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses.Anglia – Journal of English Philology. Vol. 131/1 (2013): 100–120.


“Jennifer Good: Photography and September 11th. Spectacle, Memory, Trauma.” Journal of American Studies, 2017.

Ruth Mackay: Waiting for the Sky to Fall. The Age of Verticality in American Narrative. (Columbus: The Ohio State University Press, 2016) and Catherine Morley, ed: 9/11. Topics in American Literature. (London: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2016). Journal of American Studies. 2017.

“Birgit Däwes: Ground Zero Fiction. History, Memory, and Representation in the American 9/11 Novel.” Anglia – Journal of English Philology. Vol. 130/4 (2012): 583–585.

Media Publications

“Fear and Flee the Vampire? Reading Dracula in Lockdown London.” 3:AM Magazine, April 27 2020, on https://www.3ammagazine.com/3am/fear-and-flee-the-vampire-reading-dracula-in-lockdown-london/

“How can schools nurture independent learners?” TES Magazine, June 2020.

“Neoliberal Breakdowns: the Biopolitics of the Monstrous.” Alluvium. 21st Century Writing. 2019.

“Resistant Writings. Reading the Politics of the Modernist Fragment after 2016.” Modernist Review, 2017.

“A Forgotten Gem: Herbert Heckmann. Benjamin und seine Väter.” New Books in German 41, 2017.

“A Woman’s Place is in the Resistance – 100 Years of Writing against Complicity.” U.S. Studies Online: Forum for New Writing, British Association for American Studies. 2017.

“Why the Humanities Matter.” Series in Litro: Literary Magazine – Stories Transport You. 2016-2017. Titles Include:

  • “The Great American Non-Novel?  In Search of The Genre of Crisis” (August 2017)
  • “Housing that kills. A Writer’s History.” (July 2017)
  • “When in Doubt Choose Doubt. The Poetry of Dictator Parodies.” (June 2017)
  • “Rescuing the Democratic Self. The Case against Thoughtlessness” (August 2016)
  • “Decoding the Demagogues: Reading as Disobedience” (March 2016)

“Von der Kunst des Tagträumens.“ Am Erker. Zeitschrift für Literatur. July 2016.

“Trauma and Code: Reading Vulnerability in a Digitized Present.” U.S. Studies Online: Forum for New Writing, British Association for American Studies. October 2015.

Invited Talks (selected)


“Research Practices in American Studies: Early Career Blogs as Research Across Borders.” Roundtable Panel.  British Association for American Studies 2016 Postgraduate Conference. Leeds University. November 19, 2016.


“A Poetics of Trauma after 9/11 – Representing Vulnerability in a Digitized Present.”  Talking Point. Institute of Advanced Studies, University College London. June 8, 2016.


“Risking thought through Art. Transatlantic Practices of experimental prose writing in modernism.” University of Augsburg, American Studies Research Group. June 2, 1016.

Conference Presentations

“A Monstrous Future? Metamorphosing Bodies in Speculative Fiction.” ASLE 2021 Virtual Conference. August 6,2021

“Laughter beyond the Human: Towards a Blasphemous Ecocriticism.” On Laughter, UCL Institute of Advanced Studies. July 11, 2019.

“Fluid Resistance: The Literary Politics of Water.”  London Conference in Critical Thought 2019, University of Westminster, London. July 6, 2019.

“Beyond the Tyranny of the Past: Traumatic Futurities.” Memories of the Future, Centre for the Study of Cultural Memory, School of Advanced Study, University of London. March 28-29, 2019.

“Reading Disruption: Jenny Holzer’s Emplaced Textualities.” European Association for American Studies and British Association for American Studies 2018, London. 4-7 April, 2018.

“Hybrid Prose as Politics of Form. Historical Materialism in the ‘Denkbild’ Tradition and in Richard Wright’s Twelve Million Black Voices.” Historical Modernisms Symposium. Institute of English Studies, University of London. December 12-13, 2016.

“Trauma Literature Re-visited: Digitization and Knowledge in Pynchon’s The Bleeding Edge.” Eccles Centre Panel. European Association for American Studies Biennial Conference 2016. Constanta, Romania. 22-25 April, 2016.

“Poetic Transgressions in Postmodern Language Poetry.” Poem Unlimited: New Perspectives on Poetry and Genre. International Conference, University of Augsburg. October 1-3, 2015.

“Unsettled Places and Cultural Ecology: Modernist Trauma Literature.” Modernism NOW! British Association for Modernist Studies. London. 26–28 June 2014.

“Lost in Space: Flânerie as Urban Epistemology in Times of Terror.” Arts of the City. Association for the Study of the Arts of the Present ASAP/5. Wayne State University, Detroit. 3-5 October, 2013.

“Witnessing Terror: Graphic Responses to 9/11.” Fear, Horror and Terror. 6th Global Conference, Inter-Disciplinary.Net. Mansfield College, Oxford. 7-9 September, 2012.

“Migration and the Grotesque in Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses.Crossing Borders: Ways of Constructing Identities. University of Augsburg. 10-12 May, 2012.

“’Where Personal History and World History collide’: Networks of Trauma.” Beyond Trauma: Narratives of (Im)Possibility. University of Zaragoza. 31 March – 2 April, 2011.

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