Potential Supervisors and Areas of Study – Goethe University Joint PhD Program




Monash University Areas and Supervisors

Goethe University Frankfurt Topic Areas and Supervisors


Linguistics and Applied Linguistics


Prof Kate Burridge  

  • Grammatical change in Germanic languages;
  • The Pennsylvania German spoken by Amish and Mennonite communities in Canada;
  • The notion of linguistic taboo;
  • The structure and history of English. 

Dr Jim Hlavac


  • Interpreting & translation
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Contact linguistics
  • Bilingualism
  • German as a diaspora language

Prof. Dr. Gerd Webelhuth  


  • Syntax
  • The Morphology-Syntax Interface
  • Discourse Syntax (Topic and Focus)
  • Complex Predicates
  • Scrambling and Free Word Order
  • Properties of Argument and Operator Positions
  • Idioms
  • Computational Linguistics
  • Construction Grammar
  • Conventionalization of Pragmatic Inferences

 Prof. Dr. Manfred Sailer  

  • Syntax-semantics interface
  • Constructions and collocations
  • Negative polarity items
  • Idioms
  • Corpus linguistics


Literary and Cultural Studies
New Anglophone Literatures and Cultures,English Studies and American Studies 


Prof Sue Kossew 


  • New Literatures in English (Postcolonial/transnational Literature)
  • Australian Literature
  • South African Literature.


 Prof Kate Rigby


  • Ecocritical literary
  • Cultural studies


Prof Leah Garrett 


  • American literature
  • Jewish and travel literature
  • American war literature


Assoc Prof Chandani Lokuge


  • Postcolonial Literature – transnational studies, migration and diaspora studies
  • Postcolonial Aesthetics
  • Literary and Cultural Heritages 
  • Australian Literature
  • Creative Writing – various themes


 Assoc Prof Franz-Josef Deiters 


  • Literary and Cultural Studies (German Literature, Literary theory)
  • Theatre studies (with a focus on the mediological aspect)
  • Philosophical aesthetics (German idealism and romanticism)


 Dr Anna Poletti 


  • Feminist and queer literatures, and literary theories
  • Autobiography, memoir, life writing, biography in both literary and popular forms (creative writing and literary critical projects)
  • Digital literatures, contemporary print culture research / literary publics (ie: self-publishing, zine culture, small press etc.)
  • Australian literature, literature and citizenship,
  • Genre fiction
  • Literature and affect / affect theory
  • Graphic narrative


Dr Axel Fliethmann


  • Media Philosophy
  • Theories of The Image
  • Renaissance, Aesthetic & Literary Theory
  • Modern German Literature


 A/Prof Kevin Foster


  • Representations of War and Conflict
  •  War Photography
  •  War and National Identity
  •  War and the Media
  •  Military-Media Relations


Dr Stewart King


  • Contemporary Catalan and Spanish narrative
  • Crime fiction as world literature


 Dr Kate Cregan


  • Interdisciplinary
  • Social theory of the body
  • Literary studies (mostly early modern British drama, but also 20thC Australian drama)
  • Embodiment in early modern plays and the contemporary medical-legal culture in London.



Prof. Dr. Frank Schulze-Enlger

  • Anglophone Literatures and Cultures in Africa, South Asia and the Caribbean
  • Indigenous Literatures in North America, Australia and New Zealand
  • Diasporic and migration literature in Britain, Canada, Australia
  • African-Asian literary and cultural interactions
  • Comparative anglophone literature studies
  • Transculturality
  • Postcolonial Theory
  • Cultural dimensions of globalization
  • Modernism and modernity in non-European societies and cultures
  • Transcultural teaching and learning in the EFL classroom 

 PD Dr. Sissy Helff 

  • British literature and cultural studies
  • Anglophone literatures in Africa, South Asia, the Caribbean and Austrlaia
  • Digital Narratives, photography and film
  • Transcultural & postcolonial theory
  • Migration, diaspora and refugee studies
  • Genre theory
  • Unreliable narration
  • Masculinity and queer studies 

 Prof. Dr. Astrid Erll

  • Anglophone Literatures and Cultures (Great Britain, South Asia, Caribbean and South Africa)
  • Transcultural studies
  • Comparative literature, literary and cultural theories
  • Cultural memory studies
  • Media studies, intermediality
  • Narratology

 Prof. Dr. Susanne Scholz 

  • Early modern, eighteenth and nineteenth century English literature
  • Gender studies
  • Medical humanities
  • Visual culture studies

 Prof. Dr. Susanne Opfermann

  • American Literature and Culture
  • 19th-century American Women Writers
  • Women’s and Gender Studies (Gender and Justice in Literature; Gender and Aging), Feminist Theory
  • Ethnic Studies (Asian American, African American, Jewish American)
  • Animal Studies
Creative Writing



Assoc Prof Chandani Lokuge 

  • Creative writing (novel, short story, creative non-fiction, travel)

Dr Melinda Harvey

  • women’s modernism
  • contemporary literature
  • creative non-fiction, especially the personal essay and the memoir
  • the real world uses of literature
  • the links and space between academic and mainstream literary criticism
  • medical humanities



Translation Studies and Interpreting



Dr Jim Hlavac


  • Interpreting & translation
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Contact linguistics
  • Bilingualism
  • German as a diaspora language




Film, media and communications


Film Studies     

Assoc Prof Deane Williams 

  • Documentary film history and theory
  • Australian film and television 

Assoc Prof Adrian Martin 

  • Cultural aesthetics
  • Cinema
  • International histories of theory and criticism

Dr Olivia Khoo

  • Cultural theory
  • Asian cinema and media
  • Australian cinema
  • Transnational cinema
  • Women’s cinema



Dr Therese Davis



  • Indigenous media
  • Cross-cultural film and television
  • Post colonialism and film
  • Australian cinema


Dr Con Verevis

  • Film theory and criticism
  • Adaptations: remakes, sequels, trilogies
  • Bad Cinema: aesthetics, taste and politics
  • New Hollywood cinema
  • Australian cinema

Dr Simone Murray

  • print cultures, contemporary publishing and literary sociology;
  • adaptation across media formats;
  • digital literatures and the digital literary sphere

Prof. Dr. Vinzenz Hediger


  • Philosophy of film
  • History of film theory
  • History of media theory
  • Non-canonical film forms (science, industrial, educational film)
Communication and Media Studies


Prof Justin O’Connor


  • Media communications
  • Cultural studies and arts
  • Cultural policy


Dr David Holmes


  • Communications
  • Cultural Studies areas



Dr Elizabeth Coleman

  •  Communications and media studies
  • Moral and political philosophy



Journalism and Journalism Studies


Prof Chris Nash


  • Journalism
  • the environment and social justice;
  • journalism, art and culture

Dr Mia Lindgren

  • Storytelling and social impact
  • Journalism and trauma
  • Asbestos and health communications
  • Radio feature documentary production and history
  • Community media
  • Practice-led research



History (including Australian Indigenous Studies)




Prof Lynette Russell


  • Indigenous histories
  • Post-colonialism and representations of race
  • Museum studies and popular culture
  • Victorian Ethnographers
  • Arizona Smoki People and the politics of performance
  • Food, Traditional Aboriginal Knowledge and the Expansion of the Settler Economy


Prof Bain Attwood


  • History and memory
  • Indigenous studies
  • Australian history


Assoc Prof John Bradley

  •  Indigenous Natural and Cultural Resource Management




Theatre, Performance and Music




Assoc Prof Thomas Reiner


  • Music
  • Music composition
  • also speaks German