The goal of my teaching style, which is transdisciplinary and oriented towards theory comparison and history, is the communication of a “map of knowledge”: Where are different approaches located, and how do they relate to each other? Are there broad lanes from one to the next, or just overgrown paths? Are they separated by deep ravines, are they hostile, has someone already attempted to build a bridge? When and how did these “locations” develop, respectively? Were they offshoots of others? Are they overlapping? Thus, the unavoidable island-like knowledge from the beginning of the course gains contours and context. However, it is essential to continue to look at one’s own epistemological glasses (how one can examine one’s own glasses without becoming blind is an important question) and to not only deal with bare “knowledge,” but also with the (affectively toned) “attitudes” of the authors toward their objects. I see my tasks as a lecturer as similar to those of a local “scout,” who can show students new ways of finding answers to their questions and interests. Theoretically, I operate in a wide field—not without taking my own position and preferring some places to others—of psychoanalysis (orthodox to relational), critical theory, poststructuralism, ethnomethodology, and body phenomenology. Thematically, I focus on gender research, especially critical masculinity research, violence research, and research into right-wing extremism.
At the moment, I am pursuing three research projects:
Being a father with heart and soul? Affective conflicts in paternal childcare
For a long time, a split has been observed in family sociology between expressions of attitudes and the actual practice of paternal childcare. The development of the division of housework proves to be a mixture of persistence and change. “Rhetorical Modernisations” (Wetterer) face the tough consistency of practices, as well as the ideological reestablishment of masculine supremacy. By analysing interviews with young fathers in a deeply hermeneutic way, I examine these conflicts on the behavior and affect levels of “doing masculinity”: What happens when men, whose habitual socialisation took place outside of the family spheres associated with femininity, return to this space as a father when starting a family? Which affective, bodily, and habitual conflicts will accompany this? The leading thesis states that the father’s behaviorally practical withdrawal from childcare despite modern attitudes has its origins (aside from institutional and financial constraints), even unconsciously, in the masculine habit of bottling up the fears of losing supremacy and autonomy. At the same time, the “Illusion of Emancipation” (Koppetsch & Burkhard) makes it possible to keep this dynamic away from the conscious self-image (and from possible conflicts between partners). The “antigenderist” ideologies, which are currently gaining influence, make use of the lasting unease and promise to “find our masculinity again,” as Björn Höcke from the AfD puts it.
Concepts of Gender and Sexuality in the extreme Right
The “antigenderist” hostility towards liberalization tendencies in gender relations is linked to the current extreme right. The affective attractiveness of the associated projections can be seen psychoanalytically and socio-psychologically as a ‘misalignment’ of the conflict-heavy dialectics of intersubjective relationships. Clear (gender-)identities under the peoples’ roofs, their denied hierarchization and the ‘pathic projection’ of everything that disturbs the “others” (“North African rapists”) promise ambivalence-free salvation. In this project, the function of these ideological phantasms as slate healing templates is read from the speeches and productions made by agitators and from publicized propaganda texts.
“I can remember it well, it’s awful!” From former prisoner reports on the Limmer concentration camp of Continental AG
Numerous ego documents from former prisoners have come out of the Limmer concentration camp, a Neuengamme satellite camp in Hannover, and have been compiled by a dedicated circle of citizens (letters from the camp, “souvenirs” made there, surviving texts and melodies of songs sung there, subsequently produced autobiographies and interviews).
The subjectivity-annihilating experience in the concentration camp cosmos largely destroys the formability of symbolic interaction. This research project focuses on the ways that former prisoners react in the face of the impossibility of forgetting, trying to find ways to express what they experienced, and the obstacles involved in remaining human. It involves the reconstruction of a (failing) effort to make the destroyed experience tangible and editable—with words, music, and the manufacture of deeply loved transitional “souvenir” objects from the camp. They must hold what is immediately happening away from them but must also express it at the same time.
Vorträge zum Nachhören: