Lena Mattheis

Room: R12 S04 H93

Office hours: Please consult the official list of office hours

Tel.: 0201/183-2891

e-mail: lena.mattheis@uni-due.de

Biographical Information


After completing a year of social service in the field of cultural education, Dr Lena Mattheis studied French and Anglophone Literature, as well as Media Studies, at the University of Duisburg-Essen (2010-2015). She finished her studies with an M.A. thesis on Urbanity in Namibia that was researched during an internship at the University of Namibia in Windhoek. In early 2019, she completed her doctoral dissertation entitled Translocal Narratability in Contemporary Anglophone Fiction. Her current research is focused on space in poetry, mapping and queer form.

Lena organises and runs the department's poetic writing workshop. If you're interested in writing poetry in English, do get in touch! She is also hosting a teaching and research podcast called Queer Lit that deals with LGBTQIA+* literature and culture and is available on most podcast and audio streaming apps and platforms.

Areas of Teaching and Research

  • 20th and 21st century literature and culture
  • British and Anglophone poetry
  • Queer form, literature and culture
  • Translocality and urban studies
  • Maps and mapping
  • The Poetic Writing Workshop


WiSe 2021/22

Spoken Word and Performance

SoSe 2021

Queer Literature

WiSe 2020/21

Spoken Word and Slam Poetry

WiSe 2019/20

Maps in Literature
Introduction to Literary Studies

SoSe 2019

'Go to hell!'  The Underworld in Modernist Literature

WiSe 2018/19

Introduction to Literary Studies

SoSe 2018

Popular Music and Literature
A Survey of British Literature

WiSe 2017/18

Contemporary LGBTQ+ Literature

SoSe 2017

Seminar: Global Anglophone Novels
A Survey of British Literature

WiSe 2016/17
A Survey of British Literature

SoSe 2016
Seminar: Lolita



Mattheis, Lena. Translocality in Contemporary City Novels. Palgrave Macmillan, 2021.


Mattheis, Lena, and  Lioba Schreyer, eds.  Voices from the Margins: Societal Change and the Environment in Poetry. Special Feature in Transnational Literature 10.2 (2018). Available OA.


Mattheis, Lena, and Jens Martin Gurr. “Superpositions: A Typology of Spatiotemporal Layerings in Buried Cities.” Buried Cities. Special Feature of Literary Geographies. 7.1 (2021). 5-22. Available OA.

Mattheis, Lena. “Possibilities of Translocal Mapping in Tendai Huchu’s  The Maestro, the Magistrate & the Mathematician.” Literatures of Urban Possibility. Eds. Lieven Ameel, Markku Salmela. Palgrave Macmillan, 2021. 137-163.

Mattheis, Lena. “Time in the Translocal City.” Time, the City, and the Literary Imagination. Eds. Anne-Marie Evans and Kaley Kramer. Palgrave Macmillan, 2021. 121-134.

Mattheis, Lena. “A Brief Inventory of Translocal Narratability: Palimpsestuous Street Art in Chris Abani’s The Virgin of Flames.” Narrative 26.3 (2018). 302-319.

Mattheis, Lena, and  Lioba Schreyer. “Listening to the Margins: An Introduction.”  Voices from the Margins: Societal Change and the Environment in Poetry. Special Feature in Transnational Literature 10.2 (2018). Available OA.

Mattheis, Lena. “Tendai Huchu.” The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 13 September 2016
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=13763, accessed 14 September 2016.]

Accepted for publication

Mattheis, Lena. “Translocality in City Literature.” Companion of Literary Urban Studies. Ed. Lieven Ameel. Routledge. Forthcoming.

Mattheis, Lena and Jens Gurr. “Routine vs Event: Media, Memory and the City in B.S. Johnson’s The Unfortunates.” Media, Memory and the City. Special issue of andererseits: Transatlantic Yearbook of German Studies. 2021.

Mattheis, Lena. “Poetic Space: Mapping Out How Poetry Takes Place.” Mapping Space; Mapping Time; Mapping Texts. Eds. Sally Bushell and Rebecca Hutcheon. Special Issue in Literary Geographies. Forthcoming.


Mattheis, Lena. “'What if this time we were the ones that didn’t get it?' Poems about COVID-19 and HIV/AIDS" Journal of Medical Humanities. Submitted.

Invited article

Mattheis, Lena. "How Poetry Matters Now." Handbook of American Poetry. Ed. Sabine Sielke. De Gruyter.


“Forth,” “Three Summer Poems,” “Toss the dice,” “Two Musical Poems,” “Of my first disobedience (When I stopped being God).” Verse and Tile. Eds. Torsten Caeners and Lioba Schreyer. Gilles & Francke, 2017.

Selected Conference Papers and Guest Lectures

“Workshop: Assigning Podcasts as Texts.” Humanities Podcasting Symposium. Humanities Podcast Network, 15 October 2021.

“Local-local border transgressions.” British Borders: The Annual Conference of the German Society for the Study of British Cultures (BritCult). Universität des Saarlandes, 19 November 2020.

“Superpositions: Spatiotemporal Layerings in Urban Imaginaries.” With Jens Martin Gurr. Media, Memory and the City. Workshop with Norman Klein. Kulturwissenschaftliches Institut, Essen, 26 November 2019.

“Postcolonial Italics and Translocal Haunting.” Postcolonial Punctuation/s. Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, 3 October.

“Haunting and Narrative Form.” Narrative 2019 (Annual Conference of the International Society for the Study of Narrative). Universidad de Navarra, 30 May 2019.

“‘You aren’t great and this is enough’ Great Responsibility and Not-So-Great Heroes in The Leftovers.” Lecture Series Great Responsibility: Heroism in Anglophone Cultures. University of Duisburg-Essen, 21 Mai 2019.

“‘At 5:30 p.m. in Boston, 10:30 p.m. in Marrakesh, 11:30 p.m. in Madrid, 12:30 a.m. in Istanbul’: Simultaneity and Translocal Narratability.” ALUS2019 Simultaneity in the City. University of Duisburg-Essen, 15 Februar 2019.

“Translocal Narratability in Contemporary Anglophone Fiction.” ARUS-Meeting (Advanced Research in Urban Systems). University of Duisburg-Essen, 9 Oktober 2018.

“‘And then there was… nothing?’ Absence and Origin Stories in the Series The Leftovers.” Lecture Series ‘We don’t need another hero?’ Heroism in Contemporary Culture. University of Duisburg-Essen, 8 Mai 2018.

“Translocal Maps.” Ruhr PhD Forum in American Studies. University Alliance Ruhr. 27 January 2018.

“Mapping the Translocal Metropolis.” In the context of a lecture series by Prof. Stepahnie Bung and Prof. Jens Martin Gurr entitled “Paris, London, New York: Metropolen in der französischen und englischsprachigen Literatur seit der Renaissance.” University of Duisburg-Essen. 7 December 2017.

“Translocal Mapping in Tendai Huchu’s The Maestro, the Magistrate and the Mathematician.” 1st International ALUS (Association for Literary Urban Studies) Conference (Im)Possible Cities. University of Tampere. 24 August 2017.

“Simple Recipe or Secret Formula: What Makes A Novel Translocal?” Summer Workshop in American Studies. University of Dortmund, 22 July 2017.

“Bindura Sun over Holyroodhouse.” 16th Triennial EACLALS Conference Performing the Urban. University of Oviedo, 6 April 2017.

“‘I don’t rely on paint alone:’ Palimpsestuous Street Art in Chris Abani’s The Virgin of Flames.” HCA (Heidelberg Center for American Studies) Spring Academy 2017. University of Heidelberg. 22 March 2017.

“Expressing Silence: The Curious Case of the Pianos.” 4th Postgraduate Forum “Postcolonial Narrations” Approaches to Verbalize the Unspeakable. Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich. 9 October 2016.


2020   Best Dissertation Award, Faculty of the Humanities, University of Duisburg-Essen

2019   Travel funds awarded by the Global Young Faculty

2015   DAAD scholarship for an internship and research stay in Namibia

2013   Scholarship (Studienstiftung) for language and cultural studies in Russia

2013   Full scholarship awarded by Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes/ German National Scholarship Foundation

2013   Faculty Award for a semester abroad at Fort Hays State University

2011   NRW-Scholarship