Research Statement

 

My research concerns itself with literature outside the canon (domestic fiction, travel reports, occasional literature, political pamphlets) that has traditionally been overlooked by literary scholars. I show that such texts illuminate the cultural fabric of the period in surprising—and often counter-intuitive—ways. For example, my research on political theorizing in the Napoleonic period revealed that women were active participants in the political debates of the day. More surprising was the observation that conservative and aristocratic women were far more deeply involved in the political discourses of nation building than women who advocated for more gender equality.

My current research centers on another under-researched genre—early travel handbooks. My book project entitled Mapping the Nation: German Travel Guides, 1789 – 1871 argues that the idea of a unified German nation with clearly delineated territory originated in late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century travel guides about German landscapes. My core argument is that German intellectuals learned about national taxonomies (often developed in a colonial framework) through the consumption of travel reports from foreign places and British travel handbooks about Germany. The rhetorical strategies employed there were subsequently inscribed onto an imaginary German national body that then could be mapped onto physical space. I hypothesize that German national identity is interwoven with French and British colonial discourses that were internalized by German intellectuals and turned onto themselves. 

Research Keywords

  • Women's Studies
  • Women's Education
  • German Language or Literature
  • European Languages or Literature
  • Early German Romanticism
  • Comparative Literature
  • 18th and 19th-Century German Philosophy

Presentations

  • “Multiculturalism & Notions of Citizenship in Switzerland,” American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Convention, Washington DC, November 2019. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2019.
  • “Community-Engaged Learning in Germany: Adding to the 5cs,” American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Convention, Washington DC, November 2019. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2019.
  • “Mobilities and Identity,” German Studies Association (GSA) Convention, Pittsburgh, Sept. 2018. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 09/2018.
  • “Geschichte(n) und Geschlecht in den Romanen der Schweizer Autorin Eveline Hasler,” Tabubrüche in der Deutschschweizer Literatur, Książnica Pomorska (Pomeranian Library), Uniwersytet Szczeciński, Poland, May 17-19, 2018. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 05/2018.
  • “Schweizer Jugendliteratur im Deutschunterricht," American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Convention, Nashville. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2017.
  • “Travelogues and DH,” German Studies Association (GSA) Convention, Atlanta, October, 2017. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 10/2017.
  • “Die Briten in Deutschland,” University of Trier (Germany). June 28, 2017. Invited Talk/Keynote, Presented, 06/28/2017.
  • “Mapping the Nation: Foreign Travel in Germany 1772-1822,” Nationalism before the Nation. 1756-1871: Inclusion, Exclusion, and Self-Definition. University College London. April 21-22, 2017. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 04/22/2017.
  • “Mapping the Nation: Foreign Travel in Germany 1772-1822,” Bowdoin College Symposium. April 7- 8, 2017. Invited Talk/Keynote, Presented, 04/08/2017.
  • Organizer panels “The Refugee Crisis in the DACHL Curriculum I & II,” American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Convention. Boston, November 2016. Other, Presented, 11/2016.
  • “Terra Incognita: Travel Reports about Germany in Cotta’s Morgenblatt für gebildete Stände,” German Studies Association (GSA) Convention, San Diego (CA), September 30-October 2, 2016. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 10/01/2016.
  • Co-organizer Seminar “German Travel Writing,” German Studies Association (GSA), San Diego (CA), September 30-October 2, 2016. Other, Presented, 09/30/2016.
  • “Schweizer Sagen und Mythen: Die Sage von der Teufelsbrücke,” American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Convention, San Diego, November 2015. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2015.
  • “Travel and Exploration in Cotta’s Morgenblatt für gebildete Stände, 1807-1828,” German Studies Association (GSA) Convention, Washington DC, October 1-4, 2015. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 10/2015.
  • Co-organizer Seminar “German Travel Writing,” German Studies Association (GSA), Washington, DC, October 1-4, 2015. Other, Presented, 10/2015.
  • Webinar: “Online, hybrid, and blended learning in the German classroom,” Washington University in St. Louis, February 10, 2015. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 02/10/2015.
  • “Beyond Stereotype: Teaching Switzerland through Heidi,” American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Convention, San Antonio, November 2014. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2014.
  • “Italian Travel Guides by German Women Writers (1803-1847),” the German Studies Association (GSA) Convention, Kansas City, September 19-21, 2014. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 09/19/2014.
  • “Packaging the Grand Tour: German Women Writers write Italy,” New Horizons: Reassessing Women's Travel Writing, 1660 - 1900, Chawton House Library. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 07/11/2014.
  • “Writing a Journal Article,” American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Convention, Orlando. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2013.
  • “German Hybrid Courses at the University of Utah,” American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) Convention, Orlando. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2013.
  • “Un(positioning) Identity in Goethe’s Italian Journey and Mariana Starke’s Letters from Italy,” American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA) Convention, Toronto. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 04/2013.
  • Incorporting Switzerland into the Curriculum. Webinar given through the American Association of Teachers of German. Other, Presented, 10/16/2012.
  • “Teaching ‘Vitus’ (2006) in the German Classroom, “ ACTFL, Denver, November 2011. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2011.
  • “Spaces of Encounter: A Swiss writer’s travel guide to San Francisco,“ American Comparative Literature Association. Vancouver, Canada. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 04/02/2011.
  • “Swiss Hip Hop in the German Classroom,” ACTFL, Boston, November 2010. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2010.
  • “New Hybrid Voices from Switzerland,” ACTFL, Boston, November 2010. Conference Paper, Refereed, Presented, 11/2010.

Grants, Contracts & Research Gifts

  • Border Crossings. PI: Karin Baumgartner. Co-PI(s): Eric Laursen, Gema Guevara, Angela Espinosa. Dee Council, 08/24/2009 - 12/07/2009. Total project budget to date: $10,387.00
  • Border Crossings. PI: Karin Baumgartner. Pro Helvetia, Swiss Arts Council, 08/24/2009 - 12/07/2009. Total project budget to date: $1,500.00

Languages

  • Danish, functional.
    CEFR level B1.
  • English, fluent.
  • French, functional.
  • German, fluent.

Geographical Regions of Interest

  • Germany
  • Switzerland
  • Western Europe

Publications

  • Karin Baumgartner & Monika Shafi (2019). “Introduction.” Anxious Journeys. Contemporary German Travel Literature.. (pp. 1-18). Boydell & Brewer. Published, 01/2019.
  • Karin Baumgartner & Monika Shafi (2019). Anxious Journeys: Contemporary German Travel Literature. Boydell & Brewer. Published, 01/2019.
  • Karin Baumgartner (2019). "The End of Travel in Sybille Berg’s Wunderbare Jahre and Rolf Niederhauser’s Seltsame Schleife." Contemporary German Travel Literature. Ed. Karin Baumgartner and Monika Shafi. (pp. 107-124). Boydell & Brewer. Published, 01/2019.
  • KARIN BAUMGARTNER (2017). Reading Johanna Spyri’s Heidi in the Beginning German Classroom. Unterrichtspraxis/Teaching German. Vol. 50(2), 151-161. Published, 10/2017.
  • Baumgartner, Karin (2017). “The End of Travel in Sybille Berg’s Wunderbare Jahre and Rolf Niederhauser’s Seltsame Schleife“ . Contemporary German Travel Literature. Rochester: Camden House. Accepted, 08/2017.
  • Karin Baumgartner (2016). Johns, Alessa. Bluestocking Feminism and British-German Cultural Transfer, 1750-1837. U of Michigan P, 2014. (pp. 307-309). Vol. 24. Goethe Yearbook. Published, 12/2016.
  • Karin Baumgartner (2016). Bellinger, Vanya E. Marie von Clausewitz: The Woman behind the Making of On War. New York: Oxford UP, 2016. (pp. 11-12). Vol. 45(1). History: Reviews of New Books. Published, 12/2016.
  • “Introduction.” Special Issue “Travel Literature,” Colloquia Germanica 46.2 (2013) 1-7. Published, 06/2016.
  • Colloquia Germanica, Issue “Travel Literature,” 46.2 (2013). Publication June 2016. Contributions by Kit Belgum, Daniela Richter, Matthew Uangst, Harry T. Craver, Madhuvanti Kayekar, Melissa Johnson. Published, 06/2016.
  • KARIN BAUMGARTNER (2015). Packaging the Grand Tour: German Women Authors Write Italy. Women in German Yearbook. Ed. Elizabeth Ametsbichler and Carrie Smith-Prei. Vol. 30, 1-27. Published, 10/2015.
  • KARIN BAUMGARTNER (2015). Strategies for Hybrid Course Design in Second Year German. Die Unterrichtspraxis/Teaching German. Vol. 48(2), 211-228. Published, 10/2015.
  • Karin Baumgartner (2014). Travel, Tourism, and Cultural identity in Mariana Starke’s Letters from Italy (1800) and Goethe’s Italienische Reise (1816). Publications of the English Goethe Society. Vol. 83(3), 177-195. Published, 10/2014.
  • „Der verarmte Edelmann wird Mäkler, Speculant, oder gemeiner Bauer…“ Geld, Ökonomie und Adel in den konservativen Texten des Vormärz. Geld und Ökonomie im Vormärz. Jahrbuch der Vormärz Forschung. Ed. Jutta Nickel. Bielefeld: Aisthesis, 2014. 37-55. Published, 04/2014.
  • ‘“Amerika is everything and its opposite. Amerika is different.’ Milena Moser’s Travel Guide to San Francisco (2008).“ Sophie Discovers Amerika: German-Speaking Women Write the New World. Ed. Robert McFahrland and Michelle James. Rochester, NY: Camden House, 2014. 463-480. Published, 01/2014.
  • Barkhoff, Jürgen and Valerie Heffernan, eds. Schweiz Schreiben. Zu Konstruktion und Dekonstruktion des Mythos Schweiz in der Gegenwartsliteratur. Berlin: De Gruyter, 2010. Gegenwartsliteratur 12 (2013): 349-52. Published, 10/01/2013.
  • “‘Ich kam unter die Schweizer.’ Teaching Switzerland as a Multi-Ethnic Society.” Die Unterrichtspraxis/Teaching German. 45.2 (2012): 107-126. Published, 01/11/2012.
  • “In Search of Literary Mothers across the Rhine: The Influence of Mme de Genlis and Mme de Staël on the Writing of Helmina von Chézy.” Women’s Writing. (Special Issue: Readers, Writers, Salonnières: Female Networks in Europe, 1700-1900. Eds. Katherine Astbury, Gillian Dow and Hilary Brown). 17.2 (2010): 50-67. Published, 12/2010.
  • From Multiculturalism to Cultural Hybridity: New Approaches to Teaching Modern Switzerland. Ed. Karin Baumgartner and Margrit Zinggeler. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010. 289pp. Published, 10/2010.
  • “Introduction.” With Margrit Zinggeler. New Approaches to Teaching Switzerland. Ed. Karin Baumgartner and Margrit Zinggeler. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholar Publishing, 2010. 1-15. Published, 10/2010.
  • “Women and Migration in Switzerland: Anna Felder, Agota Kristof, and Dragica Rajcic.” New Approaches to Teaching Switzerland. Ed. Karin Baumgartner and Margrit Zinggeler. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholar Publishing, 2010. 63-90. Published, 10/2010.
  • “Helmina von Chézys Das Gemälde von Heidelberg (1816) und Norika (1833). Das Reisehandbuch als weibliche Auftragsarbeit im Vormärz.” Reiseliterature im Vormärz – Neue Wege, andere Perspektiven. Ed. Christina Ujma and Detlev Kopp. Bielefeld: Aisthesis, 2009. 57-68. Published, 01/2009.
  • Kaiser, Gerhard R. and Olaf Müller. Germaine de Staël un ihr erstes deutsches Publikum. Literaturpolitik und Kulturtransfer um 1800. Heidelberg: Winter, 2008. German Quarterly. 82.4 (2009): 531-32. Published, 2009.
  • “Die Familie als politische Identität in den historischen Romanen von Autorinnen des 19. Jahrhunderts,“ Regensburger Beiträge zur deutschen Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaft. Frankfurt/M.: Peter Lang, 2009. 161-176. Published, 2009.
  • Public Voices: Political Discourse in the Writings of Caroline de la Motte Fouqué. Berne, Oxford, New York: Peter Lang, 2009. 276pp. Published, 2009.
  • “Female Education in Nineteenth-Century Germany: Caroline de La Motte Fouqué and the Rejection of Bourgeois Models of Domesticity,” Dominant Culture and the Education of Women. Ed. Julia Paulk. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholar Publishing, 2008. 82-97. Published, 01/2008.
  • “Constructing Paris: Flânerie, Female Spectatorship, and the Discourses of Fashion in Französische Miscellen (1803).” Monatshefte, 100.3 (2008): 351-68. Published, 01/2008.
  • “Valorous Masculinities and Patriotism in the Texts of Early-Nineteenth Century Women Writers.” German Studies Review, 31.2 (2008): 325-44. Published, 01/2008.
  • “Wanderer between the Worlds, Wanderer between the Words: Crossing Borders as AestheticApproach in the Works of Helmina von Chézy (1783-1856).” Schwellenueberschreitungen. Politik in der Literatur von Frauen, 1780-1919. Ed. Caroline Bland and Elise Müler-Adams. Bielefeld: Aisthesis, 2007. 209-26. Published, 01/2007.
  • “‘Die Männer sind nicht zum Frieden geboren’: Krieg und Männlichkeit in den Texten von Helmina von Chézy, Caroline de la Motte Fouqué und Karoline Pichler.” Ariadne 47 (2005): 20-25. Published, 01/2005.
  • “Staging the German Nation: Caroline Pichler’s Dramatic Writing.” Modern Austrian Literature. 37.1/2 (2004): 1-20. Winner of Max Kade Prize for best article in Modern Austrian Literature for 2004. . Published, 01/2004.
  • “Defining National Identity: Caroline de la Motte Fouqué responds to Madame de Staël.” Colloquia Germanica, 35.1 (2002): 59-73. Published, 01/2002.
  • “Illness and Health as Strategies of Resistance and Identity Formation in the Letters of Liselotte von der Pfalz.” Women in German Yearbook, 17 (2001): 55-74. Published, 01/2001.
  • “Caroline de la Motte Fouqués Das Heldenmädchen aus der Vendée (1816) als Beispiel weiblicher Historiographie.” Jahrbuch der Fouquégesellschaft. Berlin: Weidler, 1999. 78-97. Published, 01/1999.
  • “Through the Eyes of Fashion: Political Aspects of Fashion in Caroline de la Motte Fouqué’s ‘Geschichte der Moden, vom Jahre 1785 bis 1829: als Beytrag zur Geschichte der Zeit.’” Germanic Review Summer (1997): 215-30. Published, 01/1997.