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Dr. Samira Spatzek

Samira Spatzek

Research-Track Postdoc, Research Area 1

Participating Researcher

Academic Coordinator, Research Area 1: Competing Communities

Address
Freie Universität Berlin
EXC 2020 Temporal Communities
Otto-von-Simson-Straße 15
Room 01.06
14195 Berlin

Samira Spatzek is a Northamericanist and literary scholar. Her research interests include, among others, African American literature, history, and literary history, fashion studies, Critical Race Theory, Critical Whiteness Studies, and the field of Law and Literature. She studied English-speaking cultures, linguistics, and American studies at the University of Bremen, the University of Sheffield (UK), and the University of Groningen (NL). She holds a PhD in African American studies from the University of Bremen (summa cum laude).

Before joining EXC 2020 as research-track postdoc and academic coordinator in 2021, and the culture department of the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies (affiliated), Spatzek was a research assistant at the University of Bremen and a postdoctoral researcher at TU Dresden. From 2015 to 2018, her PhD project was funded by the Rosa-Luxemburg-Foundation. In 2022, she won the John W. Kluge Fellowship for her second book project "The Cultural Work of Competing Fashion Literatures in Nineteenth-Century America" to do archival research at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.

Spatzek has published in various peer-reviewed journals, including Amerikastudien / American Studies and Esclavages & Post-esclavages. She was co-editor of Current Objectives of Postgraduate American Studies (COPAS) from 2016 to 2022. Her first book Unruly Narrative: Private Property, Self-Making, and Toni Morrison’s A Mercy was published with De Gruyter in 2022.

SoSe 2020 & SoSe 2019
"Key Topics in Literature: The African American Novel in the Postwar Era, 1945-1960"
(B.A. English-Speaking Cultures, Universität Bremen)

WiSe 2019
"Introduction to English Literatures, Part 1"
(B.A. English-Speaking Cultures, Universität Bremen)

WiSe 2018
"Key Topics in Literature: North American Speculative Fictions Then and Now"
(B.A. English-Speaking Cultures, Universität Bremen)

WiSe 2014
"Key Topics in Literature: African American Women’s Writing: Toni Morrison"
(B.A. English-Speaking Cultures, Universität Bremen)

WiSe 2007
Tutorium: "Introduction to (Applying) Linguistics"
(B.A. English-Speaking Cultures, Universität Bremen)

Current research includes an EXC 2020 post-doctoral research project, The Cultural Work of Competing Fashion Literatures in Nineteenth-Century America (2021-).

This research project investigates the cultural work of "fashion literatures," i.e. novels, fashion-oriented periodicals, women's magazines, and historical newspapers in the United States at the turn of twentieth century. The overarching goal is to examine how various literary communities both negotiate and navigate diverging ideologies of fashion across genres while competing for their own 'fashionability.' Within this conceptual framework, the project carves out how notions of literature and fashion have mutually constituted each other and reveals the ways in which these notions relied on racialized gender norms.

Monographs (Monographien)

Spatzek, Samira. Unruly Narrative: On Self-Making and Private Property. De Gruyter, 2022.

Edited works (Herausgeberschaften)

Literatures, Communities, Worlds: Competing Notions of the Global, with Chunjie Zhang et al. (in preparation).

COPAS: Current Objectives of Postgraduate American Studies, co-editor, 2016-2020.

with Cedric Essi, Gesine Wegner, Stephen Koetzing, and Paula von Gleich, editors. “White Supremacy in the United States,” Current Objectives of Postgraduate American Studies (COPAS) vol. 20, no. 2 (2019). https://copas.uni-regensburg.de/issue/view/39

with Marius Henderson, Jasmin Humburg, Julia Lange, Mariya Nikolova, and Paula von Gleich. COPAS vol. 18, no. 1 (2017). https://copas.uni-regensburg.de/issue/view/34

Peer-Reviewed Essays & Journal Articles (Aufsätze)

Spatzek, Samira. “Post-Slavery Negotiations? On (Slave) Narrative and Impossible Stories in Toni Morrison’s A Mercy.” Reading and Narrating Post-Slavery, special issue of Slavery & Post-Slavery / Esclavages & Post-esclavages [online], no. 4, 10 May 2021. DOI: https://doi.org/10.4000/slaveries.3994

Spatzek, Samira, Cedric Essi, Gesine Wegner, Stephen Koetzing, and Paula von Gleich. “COPAS at Twenty: Interrogating White Supremacy in the United States and Beyond,” COPAS vol. 20, no. 2 (2019): pp. 1-17. https://copas.uni-regensburg.de/article/view/336

Spatzek, Samira, Marius Henderson, Jasmin Humburg, Julia Lange, Mariya Nikolova, and Paula von Gleich. “Editorial,” COPAS vol. 18, no. 1 (2017): n.pag. https://copas.uni-regensburg.de/article/view/285/366

Spatzek, Samira, and Paula von Gleich. “Meine Stadt und Versklavung? Spurensuche in Bremen” (My City and Enslavement? A Search for Traces in Bremen), Aus Politik und Zeitgeschichte 50-51, 2015. https://www.bpb.de/apuz/216487/meine-stadt-und-versklavung-jugendliche-auf-spurensuche-in-bremen?p=all (edited version re-published in Hier und Jetzt! Kolonialismus und Kolonialrassismus im Unterricht, 2017, pp. 21-24.)

Spatzek, Samira. “‘Own Yourself, Woman’: Toni Morrison’s A Mercy, Early Modernity, and Property.” Black Studies Papers vol. 1, no. 1, 2014, pp. 57-71. http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:gbv:46-00103777-19

Book Chapters (Buchkapitel)

Spatzek, Samira. “Cultural Appropriation of “Race” and “Ethnicity” and the Fashion Industry.” The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Visual Culture, Vol. 1, Histories, Theories, Globalities, ed. Jane Kromm, Michael Gardiner, Julian Haladyn and Heike Raphael Hernandez, Oxford: Bloomsbury [under contract].

Spatzek, Samira. “Possessive Investments: Property and White Self-Making in Early American and Contemporary Literary Texts.” Law and Culture: Methods, Concepts, Approaches, edited by Peter Schneck and Sabine N. Meyer. De Gruyter, [in preparation].

Reviews (Rezensionen)

Spatzek, Samira.Rev. of Where is All My Relation? The Poetics of Dave the Potter, ed. by Michael A. Chaney. Anglia: Zeitschrift für englische Philologie, vol. 139, no.3, 2021, pp. 609-13. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ang-2021-0051

Spatzek, Samira. Rev. of They Were Her Property: White Women as Slave Owners in the American South, by Stephanie Jones-Rogers. Amerikastudien/American Studies, vol. 66, no. 3, 2021, pp. 535-37. DOI: https://doi.org/10.33675/AMST/202

Spatzek, Samira. “Tussen stelling en verwijzing: gender, seksualiteit en zwarte mannelijkheid tijdens de Harlem Renaissance.” Rev. of The Making of the New Negro, by Anna Pochmara. Vooys: Tijdschrift voor Letteren, vol. 30, no. 3, October 2012, pp. 79-82.

Interviews (Interviews)

Spatzek, Samira, Wilderson, Frank B. III, and Paula von Gleich. “‘The Inside-Outside of Civil Society’: An Interview with Frank B. Wilderson, III.” Black Studies Papers, vol. 2, no.1, 2016, pp. 4-22. https://media.suub.uni-bremen.de/bitstream/elib/3230/1/00105247-1.pdf

Translation (Übersetzung)

Wynter, Sylvia. “Die Kolonialität von Sein/Macht/Wahrheit/Freiheit erschüttern: Eine Streitschrift über das Menschliche.” Trans. Michel Büch and Samira Spatzek. Lateinamerikanische Kulturtheorien: Grundlagentexte, edited by Isabel Exner, and Gudrun Rath. Konstanz UP, 2015.