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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Gender as a Category of Knowledge

Prof. Dr. Julia Roth

PhD Project:

Decolonial Practices: Hemispheric Readings of Gender, Genre and Coloniality in Victoria Ocampo’s Essay, Frida Kahlo’s Diary, Rigoberta Menchú’s Testimonio



Description of the Project


The dissertation project examines the interplay between gender hierarchies, genre hierarchies, and colonial hierarchies. The project is based on an understanding of transnational entanglements since the European conquest of 1492 as a history of colonization and/as (racialized) en-gendering. Against this backdrop, the dissertation analyzes Argentinean author Victoria Ocampo’s essays, Mexican artist Frida Kahlo’s painted diary, and Guatemalean activist Rigoberta Menchú’s Testimonio, along with the occidental reception of these works, asking which possibilities of resistance to hegemonic forms of knowledge and representation the respective genres provide to the authors within a trans-American context. By means of contemporary examples from the Americas, but
also from the German context, the project demonstrates the continuities of structural colonial
knowledge. Resorting to decolonial approaches, the project finally examines possibilities for overcoming the related persistent inequalities.


Studies in English and American Sudies, Spanish and Politcial Science at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Universität Kassel, University of East London and Universidad Complutense Madrid. 2008 – 2010 associated fellow of the graduate school »Gender as a Category of Knowledge« at HU Berlin. 2011 PhD in American Studies. 2011 – 2013 Postdoctoral researcher in the BMBF research network »desiguALdades.net – Interdependente Inequalities in Latin America« at Freie Universität Berlin. 2013-2018 Postdoctoral researcher and lecturer at the Center for InterAmerican Studies (CIAS) at Bielefeld University, BMBF project »The Americas as Space of Entanglements«. Since October 2018 professor for American Studies with a focus in Gender Studies at Bielefeld University and CIAS.


Selected Publications


Entangled Inequalities as Intersectionalities. Towards an Epistemic Sensibilization. In: desiguALdades.net. Working Paper Series No. 43, Berlin 2013.  (http://www.desigualdades.net/bilder/Working_Paper/43_WP_Roth_Online.pdf).


›A legible Face on Facebook ?‹. Gender and De/Coloniality in Cyberspace. In: Akten van het colloquium – Actes du Colloque 2011: From Cyborg to Facebook. Technological Dreams and Feminist Critiques, hg. v. Sophia – Belgian Network for Gender Studies, Brussels 2012. S. 80 – 92.


Weltkarte. In: Wie Rassismus aus Wörtern spricht. (K)Erben des Kolonialismus im Wissensarchiv deutsche Sprache. Ein kritisches Nachschlagewerk, hg. v. Susan Arndt u. Nadja Ofuatey-Alazard, Münster 2011. S. 553 – 563.


zus. m. Carsten Junker: Weiß sehen. Dekoloniale Blickwechsel mit Zora Neale Hurston und Toni Morrison, Sulzbach/Taunus 2010.