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Dr. Anne Rüggemeier

Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies

Raum  00 014

Telefon+49 (0)761 203 97445







Anne Rüggemeier studied Comparative Literature, English and History at Eberhard-Karls University Tübingen (Germany) and at Oxford Brookes University (UK). From 2009-2013 she held a scholarship at the Gießen Graduate Centre for the Study of Culture (GCSC) where she conducted a PhD project on relational autobiographies in contemporary English Literatures. In 2014/2015 she received the GCSC Career Development Grant. From 2015-2017 she worked as Junior Research Group Leader at the Heidelberg School of Education. She currently works as a postdoc in the ERC-funded project "Lists in Literature and Culture" and is an associated member of the research training group Factual and fictional narration (GRK Faktuales and fiktionales Erzählen). Her research interests include Life Writing Studies, Cultural Narratology, Graphic Novels, Illness Narratives, Literature and Knowledge, Young Adult Fiction and, of course, the question: “Why does literature matter?”


Publikationen (Auswahl)


  • Die relationale Autobiographie: Ein Beitrag zur Theorie, Poetik und Gattungsgeschichte eines neuen Genres in der englischsprachigen Erzählliteratur. WVT: 2014.
  • “Narrating Selves: Generischer Wandel und gegenwärtige Entwicklungen in der Autobiographie.” Ansgar Nünning, Wolfgang Hallet & Elizabeth Kovach (ed.). Key Concepts and New Topics in English and American Studies. WVT: 2014. 239-262.
  • “J.M. Coetzee’s Summertime – Breaking the Rules of a Genre to Create a Space for Broken Narratives.” Michael Basseler, Daniel Hartley & Ansgar Nünning (ed.). Emergent Forms of Life in Anglophone Literature: Conceptual Frameworks and Critical Analyses. WVT: 2015. 231-246.
  • “Kingston’s Woman Warrior in the Context of Life Writing Studies: An Exploration of Relational Selfhood.” Kathryn West & Linda T. Moser (ed.). Critical Insights: Maxine Hong Kingston’s The Woman Warrior. Salem Press: 2016.  95-108.
  • “Beyond the Subject – Towards the Object? Nancy K. Miller’s What They Saved: Pieces of a Jewish Past (2011) and the Materiality of Life Writing.” European Journal of Life Writing. Vol. 5 (2016). 36-54.
  • “Posing for all the characters in the book’: the multimodal processes of production in Alison Bechdel’s relational autobiography Are You My Mother?” Journal of Comics and Graphic Novels. Vol. 7 (2016). 254-267.
  • “Graphic Illness: Die Krankheit im Leben der Geschwister am Beispiel von David B.s Comic Epileptic. Internationale Kinder- und Jugendliteraturforschung (interjuli). Vol. 01/2017. 69-90.
  • “Auto/biographic Metafiction and Relational Lives: Antonia S. Byatt’s The Biographer’s Tale (2000) and J.M. Coetzee’s Summertime (2009) as Paradigms of Meta-auto/biographies.” Vera & Ansgar Nünning (ed.). The English Novel in the 21st Century: Cultural Concerns – Literary Developments – Model Interpretations. WVT: 2017.
  • “The List as a means of Assessment and Standardization and Its Critical Remediation in Graphic Narratives About Illness and Care. Closure 5 (2018). 55-82.
  • "Lists in Life Writing: The List as a Means to Visualize the Trace of the Absent. a/b: Auto/Biography Studies Vol.34.2 (2019).
  • (2020): Transformative list-making: challenging heteronormativity and ableism in Ellen Forney's somatographies, Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics, DOI: 10.1080/21504857.2020.1757478



Lists in Literature and Culture (LISTLIT): List Making in Narratives of Illness and Disruption

My research project is part of Eva von Contzen's ERC project which investigates the cultural practice of list making and its literary manifestations in narrative texts through the centuries. My research focuses on the postmodern era where literary lists are so prolific that they have been referred to as a symptom of the postmodern condition (Hall 2005). In contemporary literature the form of the list has multiple manifestations that range from verbal enumerations to visual reproductions of handwritten inventories and to-do-lists, from representations of medical history files, call lists and digital route descriptions to menus and Power Point slides – just to name a few examples.

As a reduced form, lists are often used to describe specifically demanding and challenging experiences that seem to defy more linear types of narration. This might be the reason why there is an abundant usage of lists in narratives of illness and disruption. Due to their fragmentariness (and often implied infinity) lists offer plenty of gaps and voids to be filled in by the readers (and viewers). In my research, I scrutinize the verbal-visual interfaces and the visual framing of lists in multimodal texts in order to understand how the reader is enabled to embody and share the experiences and the emotions of the protagonists.