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Photo of Schlipphacke, Heidi

Heidi Schlipphacke, PhD

Professor and Director of Graduate Studies

Germanic Studies

Pronouns: She / They


Building & Room:

1516 UH


601 S. Morgan St.

Office Phone:

(312) 996-0965


My research explores the ways in which the imaginative arts (in particular, literature and film) offer a unique window onto broader social constellations and cultural paradigms. An attention to aesthetic form (i.e. metaphor, metonym, intermediality, temporality) opens a window onto the the parameters of social and political structures that are often camouflaged in the real world, enabling us to imagine alternatives to seemingly entrenched cultural norms and biases. Thematically, my scholarship has focused on gender and sexuality, on kinship, on queer aesthetics, on affect, on the aesthetics and ethics of the nation-state, on intermediality, and on temporality. I concentrate largely on the cultural spaces of Germany and Austria (from the Enlightenment to the present), though my work is frequently comparative, taking into account the American cultural space as well as the broader European context. I am interested in canonical, experimental and popular works alike. My research is informed by a variety of theoretical and philosophical schools, including continental philosophy, psychoanalysis, Marxism, the Frankfurt School and Critical Theory, gender theory, queer theory, and postcolonial theory, and I am interested in methodological approaches that engage in creative dialogue with diverse theories in order to discover new potentialities within imaginative works.

I serve in a variety of roles in professional academic organizations: as Vice President of the Goethe Society of North America; on the MLA Forum
Executive Committee on 18th- and early 19th-century German literature and culture; on the governing board of the Lessing Society; and on the
executive committee of the Austrian Studies Association. I am currently on the editorial advisory boards for *The Goethe Yearbook*, *The Lessing
Yearbook*, the *Journal of Austrian Studies*, the “New Studies in the Age of Goethe” Bucknell University Press book series, and the “New Directions
in German Studies” Bloomsbury Press book series. I have formerly served on the editorial board for *Pacific Coast Philology*.

Selected Publications


Editor, Special Journal/Yearbook Issues:

  • Essays on “Movement,” The Goethe Yearbook 28. Forthcoming 2022.
  • Co-Editor, Lessing Yearbook 44: “Lessing, The European Enlightenment, and the First Sexual Revolution” (with Carl Niekerk). Göttingen: Wallstein, 2017.
  • “Habsburg Nostalgia.” Journal of Austrian Studies 47.1 (March 2014).

Selected Recent Essays:

  • “Lesbian Desire and the Jump Cut in Monika Treut’s Film Von Mädchen und Pferden.” The Germanic Review. Forthcoming.
  • “Introduction: Movement and Modernity,” in Goethe Yearbook 28. Forthcoming.
  • “Adorno and the Ethics of Camp,” Robin Truth Goodman, Ed. Understanding Adorno, Understanding Modernism. New York: Bloomsbury, 2020: 160-79.
  • “Reimagining Diderot’s Aesthetics: Lessing’s Dramatic Tableaux.” The Lessing Yearbook XLVI (2019): 71-91.
  • “Kinship and Aesthetic Depth: The Tableau vivant in Goethe’s Wahlverwandtschaften.” Publications of the English Goethe Society 87.3 (2018): 147-65.
    *Winner of Goethe Society of North America Essay Prize (2018).
  • “Introduction: ‘Sissi’: The Convergence of Memory and Myth” (with Maura Hametz). Sissi’s World: The Empress Elisabeth in Memory and Myth. New York: Bloomsbury, 2018.
  • “Melancholy Empress: Queering Empire in Ernst Marischka’s Sissi Films.” in Sissi’s World: The Empress Elisabeth in Memory and Myth. New York: Bloomsbury, 2018: 215-47 (originally appeared in Screen in 2010).
  • “Jackie’s Queer Body: Elfriede Jelinek’s Tod und das Mädchen IV and American First Lady Drag.” JELINEK(JAHR)BUCH. Elfriede Jelinek-Forschungszentrum 2016-2017 (Summer 2017): 116-41.
  • “The Future of Melancholia: Freud, Fassbinder and Anxiety After War: 2015 Presidential Lecture.” Pacific Coast Philology 52.1 (2017): 6-22.
  • “The Place and Time of the Uncanny.” Pacific Coast Philology 50.2 (2015): 163-72.
  • “The Temporalities of Habsburg Nostalgia.” Journal of Austrian Studies 47.2 (July 2014): 1-17.
  • “The Trouble With Shane: Lesbians and Polygamy.” Dana Heller, Ed. Loving the L Word. London and New York: I.B. Tauris, 2013: 81-99.
  • “Heterotopic Bodies: Intimacy and the Global in Tom Tykwer’s The International.”  Richard T. Gray and Hamid Tafazoli , Eds. Außenraum–Mitraum–Innenraum: Heterotopien in Kultur und Gesellschaft. Bielefeld: Transcript, 2012: 151-68.
  • “Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds and the Gender of Revenge.” Robert Dassanovsky (ed). Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious BasterdsA Manipulation of Metacinema. London and New York: Continuum, 2012: 113-33.
  • ““Das kleine Ich”: Robert Menasse and Masculinity in Real Time.” Sabine Wilke, Ed. From Kafka to Sebald: Modernism and Narrative Form. London and New York: Continuum, 2012: 97-123.

Notable Honors

2020, Graduate Mentoring Award, UIC Graduate College

2019, Best Essay Prize (2018) for “Kinship and Aesthetic Depth: The Tableau vivant in Goethe’s Wahlverwandtschaften” (Publications of the English Goethe Society 87.3 (2018): 147-65.), Goethe Society of North America

2017-2018, Institute for the Humanities Fellowship: “The Aesthetics of Kinship: Love, Literature and the Dream of a German Nation”, UIC Institute for the Humanities

2016, Dean's Award for Faculty Research in the Humanities: “Sissi’s World: The Empress Elisabeth in Memory and Myth”, UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

2015, Dean’s Award for Faculty Research in the Humanities: “Before the Family: Kinship in the Early Enlightenment German Novel”, UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

2008, Fulbright Senior Scholar Research Grant: “Globalizing Gender: Post-Fascist Masculinities in German Film” (Free University, Berlin), United States Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs


Ph.D. in German Studies, University of Washington
M.A. in German Studies, University of Washington
B.A. in Philosophy/Liberal Arts, St John’s College