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Dr Colette Lawson, Lecturer

Contact detailsDr Colette Lawson

ll38@st-andrews.ac.uk
Phone: 01334 462953
Office: Buchanan 304

Module surgery hours:
Semester 1: Tuesdays 10-12; On leave in Semester 2, 2017/18

Full research profile

Research and Teaching

My research investigates the relationship between the collective memory of the past and contemporary culture with a particular emphasis on post-1945 German literature and film. I have worked on the memorialisation of the Second World War and, more specifically, the problem of representing the German experience of suffering in representations of the past. My current project seeks to re-evaluate theories of cultural memory in the context of globalisation, acceleration and digital culture, looking specifically at very recent representations of Nazism.

I have worked extensively on the writer W.G. Sebald in the context of these debates and, more specifically, on the role of the bombed of German cities in Sebald's critical and fictional works. I am currently completing work on my monograph, On Natural History: W. G. Sebald and the Allied Bombings of German Cities, which sets out to demonstrate that Sebald's fascination with the bombings and the ruined cities provides a crucial intersection between his academic and aesthetic practice, offering important insights into his natural historical gaze, his archival technique and his preoccupation with the catastrophic history of his country of origin.

Other areas of interest include the cinema of East Germany, the theatre of Bertolt Brecht, Weimar counter-culture and recent film and literature, all of which is reflected in the courses I teach in the German department and dissertation supervision. Half of my teaching is on the Comparative Literature degree and I would welcome expressions of interest from research students working on German or comparative projects.

 

PhD Supervision

Matthias Eck, Alma Melchers

 

Publications

On Natural History: W.G. Sebald and the Allied Bombings of Germany
Lawson, C. 2017 Camden House.
Research output: Book/ReportBook

 

The Natural History of Destruction: W. G. Sebald, Gert Ledig, and the Allied Bombings
Lawson, C. 2009 Germans as Victims in the Literary Fiction of the Berlin Republic. Berger, K. & Taberner, S. (eds.). Camden House, p. 29-41 13 p.
Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter