We welcome Postdoctoral Fellow Julia Ditter to the Zukunftskolleg

Julia Ditter is one of our new Postdoctoral Fellows from the 18th call for applications for 2-year Fellowships. She has started her fellowship in June and is affiliated with the Department of Literature.

Julia holds a BA and MA in British and North American Cultural Studies from the University of Konstanz. In 2022 she successfully completed her doctoral thesis at Northumbria University, Newcastle-upon-Tyne before returning to Germany to work as an associate lecturer at the Universities of Freiburg and Trier. Julia joined the University of Konstanz as a postdoctoral fellow at the Centre of Cultural Inquiry in June 2023.

Julia’s main research areas are in British literature (C19-C21), Scottish literature, environmental humanities, cultural studies and critical theory, border studies, new formalism, energy humanities and infrastructure studies. In her previous research, Julia has focused on the relationship between borders and the environment in Scottish literature from the nineteenth-century to the present which resulted in a monograph forthcoming with Bloomsbury.

Her research project at the Zukunftskolleg is entitled “Energy Infrastructures and the Nineteenth-Century Periodical Press” and examines representations of energy infrastructures in the Anglophone periodical press of the nineteenth century, focusing in particular on British and Antipodean periodical publications. The project contributes to the endeavour to understand the social, material and affective foundations of the (Western) reliance on fossil fuels by examining another age of energy transition, the nineteenth century, and exploring the foundations of dominant understandings of fossil energy. The project posits that the periodical press of the nineteenth century played a central role in the creation of systems and epistemologies of energy that continue to structure our understanding of and relationship with energy today. Through a reading of the mass medium of the periodical press, Julia examines the role literary and cultural production play in mediating energy transition and reflecting on the process through which fossil fuels have come to form the energetic and ideational infrastructure of our lives in the West: from institutions, political systems and global networks to cultural practices, social formations and literary forms.

We wish her all the best for her project and for her time at the Zukunftskolleg!