Dr. Nicole Thesz

Dr. Nicole Thesz


2002 - Ph.D. - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)

Dissertation: “Palimpseste zur Deutschen Einheit: Die Funktion der Prosa und Lyrik Theodor Fontanes in Günter Grass’ Ein weites Feld”  (“Palimpsests on German Unification: The Function of Theodor Fontane’s Prose and Poetry in Günter Grass’s Too Far Afield.”)

1999 - M.A. - University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), Program in Comparative Literature

Teaching and Research Interests

  • German language and culture
  • 19th, 20th, and 21st century literature
  • The European fairy tale tradition
  • The relationship between science & humanities
  • The portrayal of medicine in literature
  • GDR literature and film
  • Ecocriticism

Courses Taught at Miami

  • GER 201: Second Year German
  • GER 202: Second Year German
  • GER 231: Folk and Literary Fairy Tales
  • GER 301: German Language Through the Media
  • GER 311: Passionate Friendships in German Literature
  • GER 312: Coming of Age in German Life and Thought
  • GER 321: Cultural Topics in German-Speaking Europe Since 1870 
  • GER 322: Comparitive Study of Everyday Culture:German-Speaking Europe and U.S.

Selected Publications

  • The Communicative Event in the Works of Günter Grass: Stages of Speech, 1959-2015. Rochester, NY: Camden House, 2018.
Refereed Journal Articles
  • “The Existentialist Legacy: Humanism and the Sisyphean Struggle in Albert Camus’s La peste and Günter Grass’s Die Rättin.” Special Issue in Oxford German Studies on Günter Grass, 48.3 (2019): 404-19.
Book Chapters
  • “Humans and Non-Humans: Uncanny Encounters in the Grimms’ Tales.” A Cultural History of Fairy Tales. 6 vols. Ed. Anne E. Duggan. A Cultural History of Fairy Tales in the Long Nineteenth Century (vol. 5). Ed. Naomi Wood. London: Bloomsbury, 2021. 83-103.
  • “Eco-Critical Perspectives: Nature and the Supernatural in the Cinderella Cycle.” The Fairy Tale World. Ed. Andrew Teverson. New York: Routledge, 2019. 426-37.
Book Reviews
  • Review of Julian Preece, Günter Grass. London: Reaktion, 2018. Pp. 223. Gegenwartsliteratur. Forthcoming 2019.
  • Review of Sonja E. Klocke, Inscription and Rebellion: Illness and the Symptomatic Body in East German Literature. Rochester, NY: Camden House, 2015. 248 pp. Colloquia Germanica. Forthcoming 2019.
  • Review of Matthew Miller, The German Epic in the Cold War: Peter Weiss, Uwe Johnson, and Alexander Kluge. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press, 2018. Pp. xvi + 237. German Studies Review 43.1 (220): 208-10.
  • Review of Gabriele Dürbeck, Urte Stobbe, Hubert Zapf, and Evi Zemanek, Ecological Thought in German Literature and Culture. Lanham: Lexington Books, 2017. The German Quarterly 91.2 (2018): 236-39.
  • Review of Svea Bräunert, Gespenstergeschichten: Der linke Terrorismus der RAF und die Künste. Berlin: Kulturverlag Kadmos, 2015. Pp. 564. Seminar: A Journal of Germanic Studies 53.4 (2017): 413-15.

Co-author and co-editor. Brigitte Pieke, Nicole Thesz, John F. Lalande, and Annemarie Wambach. Conversations around the World: In Germany (CD). Eds. Constance O. Curtin and Stanley L. Shinall. Co-eds. Ruth E. Lorbe, Frederick W. Schwink, Nicole Thesz, Carsten Wilmes, and Christina Henn. Houston: Athelstan, 2001.


  • “The Almost-Human Life: Witches, Humanoids, and Beasts in the Grimms’ Tales.” German Studies Association conference, Indianapolis, IN, October 2021.
  • “The Non-Human in Grimms’ Tales: Existential Encounters as Ecocritical Case Study.” Presented at the virtual German Studies Association conference, October 2020.
  • “‘Von wegen Zukunft’: Biologist Escapism in Judith Schalansky’s Der Hals der Giraffe.” German Studies Association conference, Portland, OR, October 2019.
  • “An Ecocritical Reading of Theodor Fontane’s ‘Wanderungen durch die Mark Brandenburg.’” German Studies Association conference, Atlanta, GA, October 2017.
  • “Traces of Camus in Grass’s Writings: Probing Humanity in the Twentieth Century.” Symposium “Günter Grass und seine Weltliteratur,” Swansea, UK, September 2017.


  • English (native)
  • French (near native fluency)
  • German (native)
  • Spanish (intermediate)