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Freie Uni­ver­si­tät Ber­lin - Exzellenzausschreibungen - EXC 2020 "Temporal Communities"

The Cluster of Excellence 2020 "Temporal Communities: Doing Literature in a Global Perspective" aims to create a new theoretical and methodological take on literature in a global perspective. Introducing the notion of ‘temporal communities’, the Cluster investigates the ways in which literature reaches out through space and time, establishing complex temporalities and extensive transcultural and transtemporal networks as it interacts with other arts and media. The Cluster’s research is conducted within five Research Areas: 1. Competing Communities, 2. Travelling Matters, 3. Future Perfect, 4. Literary Currencies, 5. Building Digital Communities.

Research associate (Postdoc) (m/f/d)

full-time job
limited to 4 years
Entgeltgruppe 13 TV-L FU
Reference code: EXC 2020 RT_B Postdoc RA 4 2021

Work­ing field:

The postdoctoral position provides an opportunity to conduct an independent research project that makes a substantial contribution to the research agenda of the cluster. The project should address the questions and topics of Research Area (RA) 4, "Literary Currencies" and link them to the research agendas of at least one other Research Area. The project thus has a bridging function in linking the research areas of the cluster.

Research Area 4 addresses the question of how literature is subjected to processes of valuation and re-evaluation as it circulates between cultures, languages, media and markets. RA 4 will focus on canon formation, notions of authorship, the circulation of texts and literary concepts and the economic dimensions of this circulation. An important focus is on the rise and fall of literary currencies, on the fluctuating prestige enjoyed by literary texts and genres. How do changing notions of literary value shape literature’s temporal communities?

Further information on the Cluster and its Research Areas:

Job description:
  • Development and implementation of a research project of their own within Research Area 4 „Literary Currencies“ and at least one other Research Area with the aim of completing a monograph

  • Organising research cooperation within Research Area 4 and participating in the work of the second Research Area which the research project relates to
  • Contributing to the Living Handbook of Temporal Communities in close cooperation with the Editorial Board
  • A substantial contribution to the further development of the cluster’s concepts and methodology and of its international networks
  • Conceiving and organising international, interdisciplinary workshops and conferences
  • Mentoring the doctoral students of Research Area 4
  • Liaising with the Research Area’s international fellows


Doctoral thesis in in literary studies or a related discipline requiring literary studies expertise


  • A thorough familiarity with the research focus of RA 4 and with the issues of literary worth/evaluations, literary circulations, canon formation and issues concerning the social field of literature
  • Experience in coordinating and managing academic projects

  • Experience in working in interdisciplinary collaborative research projects: a team-oriented work attitude, international networking experience and familiarity with different scholarly cultures and academic systems (international experience)
  • Experience in conceiving, planning and organising a broad variety of formats of scholarly exchange (workshops, conferences, possibly even newly conceived formats)
  • An excellent doctoral thesis
  • A very good knowledge of both German and English (with a minimum competence in one of these languages at the level of C1 GER and the other at the level of B2 GER)

How to ap­ply:

Applications containing the usual documents (CV, credentials. list of publications) as well as a maximum 5-page synopsis of the planned research project may be submitted either in English or in German. The synopsis should make explicit the concrete contribution to the research agenda of the cluster and explain how the planned research project combines aspects of two or more Research Areas.

Applications should contain the reference code and be sent no later than April 12th, 2021 by email to Professor Michael Gamper and Professor Jutta Müller-Tamm as one PDF file:

On the given occasion and for the duration of the essential on-site operations by Freie Universität Berlin, we kindly ask you to apply electronically by e-mail. The processing of a postal application cannot be guaranteed.

Freie Universität Berlin
EXC 2020 "Temporal Communities"
Mr. Prof. Dr. Michael Gamper
Altensteinstr. 15
14195 Berlin (Dahlem)

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Freie Universität Berlin is an equal opportunity employer.