MEDIA STUDIES (especially media aesthetics, media history, and media theory, with digital humanities taken into the fold). Much of my expertise and current questions emerged from my work on the Czech-Brazilian media theorist and philosopher Vilém Flusser. Right now, I am interested in a) the concept of “immediacy” for my research on the avant-gardes, AI, and sensory processing; and b) digital scholarship evaluation for purposes of hiring, merit and promotion. Scholars and writers who have inspired my thinking about media include Friedrich Kittler, W.J.T. Mitchell, N. Katherine Hayles, Christiane Heibach, Florian Cramer, Alexander Galloway, Alan Liu, Kathleen Fitzpatrick and many others. Current projects: Flusser 2.0 and “Evaluating Digital Scholarship.”
MODERNISM. The ever-fascinating period spanning from about the 1860s to the 1930s, during which new media (photography, film, radio) and the traditional arts engaged in battle as well as merged in entirely new forms and contents. This period also spawned new approaches to intermedia, especially as the Avant-garde experimented with creating a sensory palette all their own. Current project: Women in German Expressionism: Gender, Sexuality, Activism (with Julie Shoults).
INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION. This field mirrors the in-between-ness of both Media Studies and Modernism. Institutions all over the world, small businesses as well as multinational corporations, pursue interculturally competent employees. But how does one grow such expertise? In my courses, I include digital storytelling, among other approaches, to teach intercultural critical thinking and to help students construct and compare their own diverse stories. Current project: The Conviction Project: From Affect to Action. I am also co-directing a new dual degree program, EUROBIZ, that combines German Studies with different majors in Business.