Benjamin Brand

  • Teaching Assistant Professor

Benjamin Brand is teaching language courses and supervises discussion sections at U Pitt’s German department. In the past he has taught courses on Siegmund Freud and the arts, the legacy of Johann Peter Hebel's short prose, the intersection of the postal system and introductions to 19th and 20th century German literature and culture.

Benjamin is a German Studies scholar, with additional training in English, American Studies, Journalism, and Political Science. His research and teaching focus on 18th to 20th century German literature, critical thought, and German language acquisition. He is especially interested in the prose of Johann Peter Hebel, the writing scenes in Freuds essays and letters, and communicative language teaching.

His article “[D]ie größte Weisheit verrathet sich…”- Johann Peter Hebels Anleitungen zum Selbermerken, which focuses on the strategies Hebel employs when he tries to communicate nature’s excess of life, will be published in the coming spring edition of Monatshefte (111.1). His next project examines Sigmund Freud’s writings in light of his manuscripts, with special emphasis on Der Wunderblock as well as on a number of his private correspondences in which he reflects upon the quality of his hand, his implement and his stationary. It is in the attempt to analyze writing as the “here and now” of literary, critical, or creative production, that all inherent resistances to writing (resistances which act on disparate ontological levels) must be overcome in order for a text to emerge.

Education & Training

  • PhD, German, Brown University, 2016
  • MA, German, Brown University, 2013
  • MA, Applied Lit. & Cult. Studies, TU Dortmund, 2009