Alexander Greiffenstern


University of Duisburg-Essen
Institut für Anglophone Studien
R12 S04 H22
Universitätsstr. 12
45141 Essen

Room: R12 S04 H22

E-mail: alexander.greiffenstern [at]

Phone: +49 201 183-3411

Office hours

by appointment

Biographical Note

Alexander Greiffenstern studied comparative literature, history and computer science at Bielefeld University. His master thesis is entitled "Desiring-Machines and Mechanisms of Control in William S. Burroughs' Naked Lunch."

Research Interests

  • Literary theory & aesthetic theories
  • 19th and 20th century American literature
  • History of the 20th century
  • Literature after 1945
  • Cultural studies


Josef Raab, and Alexander Greiffenstern, ed. Interculturalism in North America: Canada, the United States, Mexico, and Beyond. Interamerican Studies/Estudios Interamericanos Vol.8. Wissenschaftlicher Verlag Trier & Bilingual Press, 2013.

Alexander Greiffenstern, and Josef Raab. “Introduction: Interculturalism and Difference.” Raab & Greiffenstern, eds. Interculturalism in North America. 1-23.

Alexander Greiffenstern. “Ballad of the Big Man: The Soundtrack of The Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo.” Raab & Greiffenstern, eds. Interculturalism in North America. 203-213.

Bryan Mulvihill, and Alexander Greiffenstern. “Interculturalism—Vancouver and the World Tea Party.” Raab & Greiffenstern, eds. Interculturalism in North America. 275-296.

“Kathy Acker – Biogramm und Erzählerisches Werk.” Kindlers Literaturlexikon. 3. Auflage. Stuttgart / Weimar: Verlag J. B. Metzler, September 2009.

“Douglas Couland.” KLfG. München: Richard Boorberg Verlag, 2009.

Conference Papers

“Beckett asked me to fish in his pond”: Burroughs’ Self-Image as a Writer. European Beat Studies Network 2nd Annual Conference. Aalborg University, Denmark. August 30, 2013.

“Becoming-Animal in the Work of William S. Burroughs.” European Beat Studies Network Inaugural Conference. Middelburg, Netherlands. September 5.-7., 2012.

Courses Taught at the UDE

  • "In Dreams Begin Responsibilities": Dreams and Visions in 20th Century Literature
  • "The way OUT is the way IN": Reading Naked Lunch
  • African-American Literature after 1945: Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man
  • American Novels of the 20th Century
  • American Tales of the Fantastic and Hyperreal
  • Douglas Coupland – Stories from Culture’s Waste Bin
  • Fictionalizing History - Writing Memory
  • Introduction to Beat Literature
  • Meta-Fiction as a Corporeal Experience
  • Reading Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man
  • Re-Mapping the Modern Metropolis
  • You Can't Win: Autobiographies of American Misfits