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Research Area 5: Media and Multiliteracy Studies


Research Area 5 focuses jointly on language and media, two sites of cultural production vital to contemporary cultures. We represent a wide variety of disciplines, including sociology, history, journalism, linguistics, and cultural, literary, and film studies. Hence, our discussions and projects reflect both conceptual engagement and thematic diversity.

Our research focuses on how media and multiliteracy reinforce, negotiate, and subvert identities and policies, build and question communities, and to which effect they convey intercultural communication. As a result, we explore contemporary perspectives by looking into visual and narrative constructions as both transforming and transformed in the process of digitalization. Besides critical insight into established texts, we are interested in recent and more engaged developments in the field.

Recently, media and multiliteracy have also been pushed to the forefront of scientific attention due to the Corona crisis. Social, political, and academic actors have contributed to the creation of intricate national and global ‘pandemic discourses’. Their complexities, ambivalences, mistrust, among other factors, clearly underline that navigating these discourses requires a great deal of multiliteracy on each participant’s side.

RA5 plunges into this emerging discursive environment to examine how readers gain and use multiliteracy to navigate the murky water of COVID-19 press reportage. How do they deal with divergences in press reportage, how do they assess credibility, how does media use and channel the plethora of converging (or diverging) interests in Corona? These and many more (emerging) questions will be tackled using the diverse academic skillsets that our members bring to the table including perspectives from journalism, linguistics, political theory, sociology, and others.


Recent Projects

  • In July 2022, we organized an online session and book discussion with Prof. Eduard Arriaga from Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts on his publication Afro-Latinx Digital Connections published in 2021
  • In July 2018, we have invited Prof. Ulrike Shröder from Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais in Brasil to hold a Workshop on Intercultural communication in interaction
  • In SS 2018, we co-organized the film series “Sound Disruptions – Music and Global Politics”, with  RA7 and AG Moving Images
  • Members of RA5 participated in the newsreels project organised by RA8, leading up to the publication of a special issue of On_Culture entitled ‘Alterity in the Newsreels of 1968. 50 Years Later’ published in 2018
  • Online workshop with Prof. Suely Fragoso (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil) entitled ‘E-magined Communities: Digital Nationalism on Social Networking Sites’, 2016
  • Summer Semester 2016: Keynote Lecture and Master Class by Prof. Claire Kramsch (Professor of German and Education, UC, Berkeley) as part of the GCSC’s Anniversary Lecture Series
  • International symposium entitled ‘Multilingual Turns: New Perspectives on Cross-Cultural Communication’, in collaboration with the DAAD-Network 'Kulturelle Kontakt- und Konfliktzonen im östlichen Europa', 2016



Participating Scholars

  • Benner, Annalina
  • Brückmann, Tim 
  • Catovic, Zerina
  • Hilal, Toqa
  • Kalte, Isabella
  • Karpa, Romana
  • Krawczak, Sara
  • Quast, Fiona (Speaker)
  • Rezaei, Somaye
  • Schmieder, Robin
  • Seiler, Falk Prof. Dr.
  • Wagner, Felix Andreas
  • Wurst, Christina
  • Zimina, Mariia (Speaker)

Affiliated Scholars

  • Alinezhadi, Ehsan
  • Barkijević, Ivana
  • Bekhta, Natalja Dr.
  • Benitt, Nora
  • Bernaisch, Tobias
  • Clucas, Tom Dr.
  • Dejanović, Sarah
  • Feilke, Helmuth Prof.
  • Fernandez-Castro, Johanna
  • Gloning, Thomas Prof.
  • Grumt Suárez, Melanie
  • Hebborn, Marianna
  • Hennig, Mathilde Prof.
  • Hubermann, Sapir
  • Huang, Amy
  • Ippolitova, Ekaterina
  • Jones, Roger Dale
  • Koch, Christopher
  • Koch, Natascha
  • Krit, Alesya Dr.
  • Künstler, Viktoria
  • Ladilova, Anna Dr. 
  • Lehnen, Katrin Prof.
  • Leonhardt-Borges, Clarissa
  • Lobin, Henning Prof.
  • Maksimovtsova, Ksenia
  • Marques, Gabriela de Oliveira
  • Migowski, Ana
  • Mukherjee, Joybrato Prof.
  • Müller, Katharina
  • Oloruntuba, Faith
  • Pankova, Ekaterina
  • Pepiak, Ewelina
  • Raimann, Eva
  • Revis, Melanie Dr.
  • Rösler, Dietmar Prof.
  • Saage, Sven
  • Schäfer, Jan Simon
  • Schmäing, Sophie
  • Schüler, Lisa
  • Stadelmann, Vera
  • Stamenković, Nevena
  • Steinmetz, Michael Dr.
  • Zeyer, Tamara
  • Zibelius, Marja
  • Zimmermann, Eva
Somaye Rezaei