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Frau Dr. Mahshid Mayar

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1. Fakultät für Linguistik und Literaturwissenschaft / Studienfächer / Anglistik / Amerikanistik / Lehrende


North American Literature and Culture, Bielefeld University

+49 521 106-67091  
Telefon Sekretariat
+49 521 106-3662Sekretariat zeigen
UHG C4-222 Lage-/Raumplan

Winter semester 20/21:

Please book a time slot via eKVV for Skype meetings during my office hour, Mondays 16:00 - 17:00.

Termin im eKVV vereinbaren >>

Curriculum Vitae

Mahshid Mayar is an Assistant Professor at the chair of North American Literature and Culture. Her research and teaching interests lie broadly in late 19th-century US history (emphasis: micro-history of US Empire (late C19), history of education, history of race and racism, archive studies, C19 juvenile periodicals), literature (emphasis: transnational US literature, visual fiction, C21 activist literature), and culture (emphasis: childhood studies, material culture, US empire), new media studies (emphasis: critical game studies, digital games), and 21st-century protest poetry.

Mahshid has held fellowships at Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., and at Amherst College, Massachusetts. Earlier, in 2011, she was a doctoral visiting fellow at Georgetown University, Washington, DC.


In general, I write about and teach American literature, history, and culture, since the late 19th century at the intersection of age, gender, race, citizenship, and class.

In my current research, I interrogate the politics and the poetics of silence and silencing. My Habilitation/second-book project (Erasure: Poetics, Politics, Performance) focuses on the political, the historical, and the aesthetic in contemporary US erasure poetry. In this project, I examine protest poetry by a wide number of C21 North American activists/poets, including Solmaz sharif, M. NourbeSe Philip, Isobel O'Hare, Niina Pollari, and Janet Holmes.

At the same time, and together with my colleague Marion Schulte, I co-edit Silence and Silencing in History, Literature, Language, and Culture, an edited interdisciplinary volume that is under contract with Palgrave Macmillan.

My first book, Citizens and Rulers of the World: American Children and World Geography at the Turn of the Twentieth Century (forthcoming with the University of North Carolina Press), examines cultures of American empire at the intersection of nineteenth-century American history, empire studies, historical childhood studies, and history of education. In this book, I map the production, consumption, and re-appropriation of world geography knowledge in the wake of the changing geopolitical imperatives in the spatially unsettled U.S. empire at the turn of the twentieth century. Recent essays for the European Journal of American Studies and the Society for History of Childhood and Youth (SHCY) take some of these discussions into new directions.

For a series of short essays wherein I reflect on my teaching philosophy and writing-intensive, research-led teaching practices, please check the posts in my scholarly blog.


Manuscripts & Edited Volumes

- Citizens and Rulers of the World: American Children and World Geography at the Turn of the Twentieth Century, University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill (2021).

- Essays on Silence and Silencing across the Humanities (working title), Palgrave McMillan (2021).
(co-edited with Marion Schulte)

- Special Issue “ American Video Games and the Politics of Popular Culture ” (co-edited with Stefan Schubert, Universität Leipzig) in European Journal of American Studies 16.3 (2021).

- Essay Collection “Spaces of Empire” in U.S. Studies Online (USSO), British Association for American Studies (2020).

- Special Issue “Encounters in the ‘Game-Over Era’: The Americas in Videogames” , in fiar: Forum for Inter-American Research 11.2 (2018).

Articles & Essays

- "‘Playes print the letter.’ Childhood, Temporality and the Historical Archive," article in Journal of the History of Childhood and Youth 14.1 (2021), Johns Hopkins University (forthcoming in spring 2021).

- “Heedless Feasts of Indifference: Racialization, Enmification, and Necropolitics in Unplayable War Games,” article in special issue “American Video Games and the Politics of Popular Culture” (forthcoming in 2021 with European Journal of American Studies 16.3).

- “What on earth! Slated Globes, Spatial Absence, and the U.S. Empire,” in European Journal of American Studies 15.2 (2020).

- “Weirding the Empire in West of Loathing and Other Digital Games,” in U.S. Studies Online (USSO) essay series “American Studies and Video Games,” , British Association for American Studies (2019).
- “Verbs of Violence: 19th-Century Jigsaw Puzzles, Otherness, and American Childhood,” Society for the History of Children and Youth (2019).

- “A game (simulation) is a game (interactive technology) is a game (lifestyle) is a game (live archive): An Introduction,” introduction to “Encounters in the ‘Game-Over Era’: The Americas in/and Video Games,” in fiar: Forum for Inter-American Research 11.2 (2018).

- “Überleben im Anthropozäne. Wege zu einer Definition von Humanitarian Crisis Games,” in Weltmaschine Computerspiel: Mythen und Techniken der Globalisierung im digitalen Spiel . Edited by Eugen Pfister and Tobias Winnerling. Verein zur Studien -interkultureller Geschichte: Mandelbaum Verlag (2018).

- “Survival as Species Narrative: (Supra-)Referentiality in Humanitarian Crisis Video Games,” in Loading….: Journal of the Canadian Game Studies 11.18 (2018).

- “A Case for Serious Play: Virtual Pacifism and Historical Digital Games,” in “Frühneuzeitlicher Krieg in Digitalen Spielen,” Zeitschrift des Arbeitskreises Militär und Gesellschaft in der Frühen Neuzeit 20 (2016).

- “From Tools to Toys: American Dissected Maps and Geographic Knowledge at the Turn of the Twentieth Century,” in Knowledge Landscapes North America . Edited by Sabine Sielke, Christian Klöckner, and Simone Knewitz. Heidelberg: Winter (2016).

For my complete CV, please see wwwhomes.uni-bielefeld.de/mmayar/.

Aktuelle Forschungsthemen

Research & Teaching Interests

  • US Activist Literature / Erasure and Found Poetry / Silence & Silencing in Literature
  • Visual Novel / Book and/as Art / C21 Print Culture / Documentary Arts
  • Gender Studies / Racialization / Affect Theory / Postcolonial Studies
  • Poetics and Politics of the Historical Archive / History and/as Fiction
  • New Media Studies / Critical Game Studies / Video Games & Pop Culture
  • Childhood Studies / History of Education / Juvenile Periodicals / Visual Culture
  • Cultural Geography of US Empire / Global Microhistory / Theories of Space & Place
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