Juan-Jacques Aupiais

Graduate Student


J.J. Aupiais previously received an A.B. in German from Princeton University (2015). He has also spent time at the Freie Universität zu Berlin as a fellow of the Berlin Program for Advanced German and European Studies (2020-2022). Focusing on the analytical intersections of translation theory, critical philosophy of race, German critical theory, post- and de-colonial critique, migration studies, and globalization theory, J.J.’s research engages German colonial literature and history, contemporary German literature, and the African as well as Asian receptions of German philosophy and literature since the 19th century. His dissertation project, Post-German Germanies: Race, Nation and Creolization in German Literature Between Colonialism and Globalization, explores how practices of translation and cultural formations of creolization entrench or contest constructions of racial and national identity in two juxtaposed discursive contexts: German colonial literature (focusing on German nationalist and white supremacist writer Hans Grimm, on the one hand, and Nama indigenous leader Hendrik Witbooi, on the other) and contemporary German literature (theorizing a cultural politics of creolization in the works of authors such as Yoko Tawada and Sharon Dodua Otoo). It thereby advances creolization as a concept key to understanding the cultural politics of language emerging concomitantly with contemporary literature’s “rediscovery of colonialism” (Göttsche), drawing from the archive of language-based logics of identity in colonial literature for the critical purposes of contemporary anti-racist literary work.