I am a historian of Modern European history somehow ‘stranded’ in the American Southwest. Born and raised near Bayreuth, Germany, I originally came to Arizona on a scholarship from the Federation of German-American Clubs. I studied at Northern Arizona University (NAU) for two semesters (2004/05), and then went back to finish my M.A. in history, political science, and English (American cultural studies) at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg (2007) in Germany. I returned to NAU for my Ph.D., completed my dissertation in 2011, and have been a full-time lecturer here in Flagstaff ever since.
A history of everyday life (Alltagsgeschichte) guides my research and teaching. In addition to my dissertation work focusing on supposed young delinquents in Munich, I also completed research on environmental justice and the persecution of homosexuals during the Holocaust. My current research project engages with German Southwest Africa (modern day Namibia), a former German colony, and the larger issue of genocide. The disenfranchised are also in the center of my courses on European and World history here at NAU. Instead of repeating simplistic meta-narratives I encourage students to critically engage with the past and give the silenced a voice in history; I also try to find ways to involve students in the construction of history based on various hands-on learning projects.