UConn Graduate Assistant
Isabell Sluka is a PhD candidate (ABD) in German Studies. She holds a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in Cultural Studies from Leuphana University of Lüneburg, Germany, as well as graduate certificates in Media Studies and Gender Equality from the University of Oslo, Norway.
Isabell’s interdisciplinary research and teaching are deeply concerned with questions of social justice and the politics of belonging, particularly in relation to class, race and ethnicity. Her main research interests are 20th-21st century German literature and culture, media culture and participation, media activism, theories of culture and the public sphere. In addition to her PhD, she is pursuing graduate certificates in Human Rights and Indigeneity, Race, Ethnicity and Politics (IREP). From 2020 to 2023, Isabell served as a co-organizer of the “Decolonizing Area Studies” initiative. Prior to joining UConn, she worked as a German instructor and academic advisor at the Universidad Paraguayo Alemana in San Lorenzo, Paraguay.
In her dissertation titled “From a Postmigrant Society to Radical Diversity: (Re)Negotiating Germanness in the Digital Realm,” Isabell investigates how digital media are used to contest current conceptions of Germanness, national identity and belonging. Based on the thesis that traditional mass media, and especially linear television, narrate Germanness in a very narrow and therefore exclusionary way, she argues that the digital realm, and specifically social media sites, provide the necessary platforms and tools to question this narrative and to (re)write conceptions of Germanness.
Most recently, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, in collaboration with Greenhouse Studios, awarded Isabell the 2022-24 Graduate Assistantship in Digital Humanities.
“Beyond Crisis: The Dark Academia Aesthetic and its Implications for the Humanities.” Passionate Humanities. Ways into the Future, edited by Stefan Bronner, Matthew Jones and Marcel Schmid. (Forthcoming)
“Kleine Form, große Wirkung? Hashtags im Kontext postmigrantischer Aushandlungsprozesse.” Kleine Formen – widerständige Formen? Postmigration intermedial, edited by Jara Schmidt and Jule Thiemann, Verlag Königshausen & Neumann, 2023, pp. 127-152.
“From Nation States to Communities of Interest: Solidarity and Human Rights Declarations in Wolfgang Fischer’s Styx.” Postcolonial Interventions: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Postcolonial Studies, vol. 7, no. 1, 2022, pp. 167-205.
“Solidarity, not charity: How #LeaveNoOneBehind advocated a reconfiguration of pro-migrant solidarity during the COVID-19 pandemic and what we can all learn from it as we face current and future crises.” Open Global Rights, February 17, 2023. (Published in English and Spanish)