People Core Faculty Michael Levine

Levine2Michael Levine
Acting Department Chair
Ph.D., The Johns Hopkins University

172 College Avenue, room 301
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Spring 2016 Office Hours: by appointment




Research Interests:

19th and 20th century German literature, literary theory, and intellectual history.

His research focuses on four major areas: intersections among literary, philosophical and psychoanalytic discourses; Holocaust Studies and the poetics of witnessing; the changing structure of the literary, philosophical, and operatic work in the German nineteenth century; and the legal and political legacies of Nuremberg.


Camargo Foundation Fellowship, Fall 2011

2010 SAS Award for Distinguished Contributions to Undergraduate Teaching (Associate Professor category)



A Weak Messianic Power: Figures of a Time to Come in Benjamin, Derrida and Celan, Fordham University Press, 2013.

The Belated Witness: Literature, Testimony, and the Question of Holocaust Survival, Stanford University Press, 2006.

Writing Through Repression: Literature, Censorship, Psychoanalysis, The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994

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Edited Volume:

Co-editor with Bella Brodzki of Comparative Literature Studies Special Issue: Trials of Trauma: Comparative and Global Perspectives, vol. 48, no. 3, 2011 (Penn State Press).


Samuel Weber, Return to Freud: Jacques Lacan's Dislocation of Psychoanalysis, Cambridge University Press, 1991. Translation of Rückkehr zu Freud: Jacques Lacans Ent-stellung der Psychoanlyse (Berlin: Ullstein, 1978)

Articles (selected):

“Poetry’s Demands and Abrahamic Sacrifice: Celan’s Poems for Eric,” MLN Comparative Literature 126 (2011): 1014–1048 (The Johns Hopkins University Press)

Editors’ Introduction to Comparative Literature Studies Special Issue Trials of Trauma: Comparative and Global Perspectives, co-edited with Bella Brodzki,, vol. 48, no. 3, 2011, 273-9 (Penn State Press)

“The Day the Sun Stood Still: Benjamin’s Theses, Trauma and the Eichmann Trial,” MLN German Issue, 126 (2011): 534–560 (The Johns Hopkins University Press)

“Beyond Victim and Perpetrator: New Subject Positions in Recent German-Jewish Films,” William Donahue and Martha Helfer, eds., Nexus: Essays in German Jewish Studies, 2011, 227-50, Camden House Press

“Spectral Gatherings: Derrida, Celan and the Covenant of the Word,” Diacritics, double issue on “Derrida and Democracy,” 38.1-2: Spring-Summer 2008, 64-91

“’A Place So Insanely Enchanting’: Kafka and the Poetics of Suspension,” MLN Comparative LiteratureIssue, 2009 (123:5), 1029-1067

“The Sense of an Unding: Kafka, Ovid, and the Misfits of Metamorphosis,” in Harold Bloom, ed., Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis, Bloom’s Literary Criticism, NY 2008,

“A Coming Freedom: Kafka’s Investigations of a Dog,” Journal of the Kafka Society of America, June/December 2006, Numbers 1-2, 43-51

“Pendant: Büchner, Celan and the Terrible Voice of the Meridian” MLN German Issue, vol. 122, no. 3, German Issue, 2007, 573-601

“Silent Wine: Celan and the Poetics of Belatedness,” in New German Critique, Special Issue on Paul Celan, no. 91, Winter 2004, 151-170

“’Toward an Addressable You’: Ozick’s The Shawl and the Mouth of the Witness” in Marianne Hirsch and Irene Kacandes, eds., Teaching the Representation of the Holocaust, The Modern Language Association of America, 2004, 396-411

"Necessary Stains: Art Spiegelman’s Maus and the Bleeding of History” in Deborah Geis, ed., Considering Maus: Approaches to Art Spiegelman’s “Survivor’s Tale” of the Holocaust, University of Alabama Press, 2003, 63-104

"Writing Anxiety: Christa Wolf's Kindheitsmuster," Diacritics, Summer 1997, vol. 27, no. 2, 106-123

"Freud and the Scene of Censorship" in The Administration of Aesthetics: Censorship, Political Criticism, and the Public Sphere, Richard Burt, ed., University of Minnesota Press, 1994, 168-191

"Accentuating Ent-stellung," translator's introduction to Samuel Weber, Return to Freud, Cambridge University Press, 1991, xv-xxii

"Heines Ghost Writer: Zum Problem der Selbstzensur in Schnabelewopski," Heine Jahrbuch, 1987, 9-28

Recent Courses Taught at Rutgers:


Afterimages of War: Trials, Trauma and Visual Representation (Fall 2013)
Introduction to Trauma Studies (Spring 2013)
Politics and Poetics of Citation (Spring 2012)
Kafka (Fall 2011)
Analytic Crossings: Literature and Psychoanalysis (Fall 2009)


Serious Comics (Byrne Seminar, Spring 2013)
Atrocity Crimes (Honors Seminar, Fall 2012)
Introduction to German Studies (Fall 2012, Spring 2010)
Introduction to Literary Theory (Fall 2011, Fall 2009)


Contact Us


German House
172 College Ave.
New Brunswick,
NJ 08901

P  732-932-7201
F  732-932-1111 
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