June 29 – Exhibition “Migration and Graphic Fiction” 🗓

June 29 – Exhibition “Migration and Graphic Fiction” 🗓

June 29, 2023
Thu, 14:00-16:30
Landesmuseum Mainz (Forum)

Große Bleiche 49-51, 55116 Mainz


“Migration and Graphic Fiction”

Comic-Romane oder „Graphic Fiction“ gelten heute längst als ernstzunehmende Literatur. Aber wie verändert sich unsere Wahrnehmung von Themen wie Migration, Gender oder Trauma, wenn diese Geschichten in Form von Graphic Fiction erzählt werden? Diese Ausstellung betrachtet, wie Comic-Romane Geschichten von Einwanderung und Kulturkonflikt auf ganz besondere Weise erzählen. Damit fragt die Ausstellung nicht zuletzt, ob US-amerikanische Ansätze zu kultureller Hybridität nicht auch auf Deutschland anwendbar sind.

Die Veranstaltung ist kostenfrei und öffentlich. Everyone welcome!

14:00 Eröffnung | Grußworte | Einführung
Prof. Dr. Mita Banerjee (Kursleiterin und Organisatorin der Ausstellung)
Prof. Dr. Alfred Hornung (Sprecher des Obama Institute for Transnational American Studies)

anschließend Ausstellung Projektarbeiten | Sektempfang

Topics, among others:

  • The Portrayal of the Shoah in Art Spiegelman’s Maus
  • BatMAN – The Hero Unmasked
  • Behind The Scenes – Interview with Graphic Novel Author Eric Schwarz
  • Inked Insanity – Comic Books Between Superpowers and Supersexism
  • Graphic Groove – Whose Dream Is it Anyways? Reviewing the American Dream and Identity in Malaka Gharib’s Graphic Memoir

Die hier ausgestellten studentischen Beiträge beruhen auf einem Projektseminar mit dem Titel „Migration and Graphic Fiction“, das im Sommersemester 2023 an der Universität Mainz in der Amerikanistik unter der Leitung von Prof. Dr. Mita Banerjee (mita.banerjee@uni-mainz.de) stattfand.


You can download the poster for the exhibition here.

4th of July – Lectures, Exhibition, Get-together, Food and Drinks 🗓

4th of July – Lectures, Exhibition, Get-together, Food and Drinks 🗓

4th of July Events at the Obama Institute

July 4, 2023, 4-8 p.m., P1 & Philo-Wiese (Philosophicum)

What might the 4th of July mean to Americans and foreigners in general and especially in 2023?

From insights into the U.S. Senate’s social fabric to an “American Way of Death” to students’ takes on the meaning of the holiday: Join us in discussing the day’s importance and possible criticism but also in celebrating an informal Obama Institute summer get-together of students, faculty, and friends.

Food and drinks will be provided!

4-6 p.m. I Guest Talks I P 1

The Social Fabric of the U.S. Senate
Professor Sean Theriault
The University of Texas at Austin

Selling “The American Way of Death”
PD Dr. Jan Logemann
JGU Mainz/Uni Göttingen

6-8 p.m. I (Graduate) Student Project Exhibition
with Food and Drinks

Posters and performances by students from Dr. Bailey Moorhead’s courses

Pizza, Snacks, and Drinks

You can download the poster for the event here.

June 18 – Interstellar – Ein Menschlicher Blick auf das Universum 🗓

June 18 – Interstellar – Ein Menschlicher Blick auf das Universum 🗓

„Interstellar – Ein Menschlicher Blick auf das Universum“

Filmvorführung und Gespräch im Rahmen der Reihe „Akademie Trifft Kino im Wissenschaftsjahr ‚Unser Universum‘“

Am Sonntag, den 18. Juni 2023, 15.30 Uhr, zeigen wir im CAPITOL Mainz Christopher Nolans Kinofilm „Interstellar“ mit Matthew McConaughey und Anne Hathaway, in dem es u.a. darum geht, wie ein künftiges Leben im Weltall aussehen könnte. Doch wie viel Wissenschaft steckt sich hinter der spannenden und spektakulären Handlung des Science-Fiction-Filmes? Und was sagt dieser Blick auf das Universum über die Menschheit? 

Der Amerikanist Dr. Jens Temmen und der Physiker Prof. Dr. Matthias Neubert erörtern in einem einführenden Gespräch diese und andere Fragen.

Die Vorführung wird von der Jungen Akademie | Mainz in Kooperation mit Prisma+ und dem CAPITOL organisiert. Eintrittskarten sind zum Sonderpreis von 7,- € an der Kinokasse erhältlich, nähere Informationen: 


June 14 – Reading: FAMILY MATTERS – Of Life in Two Worlds 🗓

June 14 – Reading: FAMILY MATTERS – Of Life in Two Worlds 🗓

FAMILY MATTERS – Of Life in Two Worlds

A Reading with American Studies Mainz Alumna Martina J. Kohl

Co-organized by the Obama Institute and the Atlantische Akademie Rheinland-Pfalz

June 14, 6 pm
P 4 (Philosophicum)

Jakob-Welder-Weg 18, Mainz

FAMILY MATTERS follows the traces of a German family that, over generations, continues to cross the Atlantic in both directions. Like Elizabeth and Henry who, at the beginning of the 20th century, are forced to leave their beloved New York to return to the old country; the violinist Clara who can only live her passion for music in the American of the suffragettes; the war bride Toni, who courageously follows a G.I. to Nebraska after World War II; and, finally, the student Iris who is trying to find her place in both worlds in the 1980s. Looking back, they all ask the same question:  „What if . . . ?”  What if they had not gone to America, or back to the old country? If they had not fallen in love? What if they had taken that other road and pursued their dreams a bit more forcefully?

FAMILY MATTERS takes ordinary, yet memorable characters out of the yellowed pictures in the photo albums, gives them a voice and places them in their own time. Martina J. Kohl revives the past. She shows that today cannot be understood without the yesterday. And that migration, uprooting and the search for belonging are universal themes.

Martina J. Kohl worked in the Cultural Section of the U.S. Embassy in Berlin, Germany, for many years. She developed and organized numerous programs, but especially loved the literature series. Writing has been a passion ever since she taught at the University of Michigan. It is part of her seminars that she teaches regularly at Humboldt University Berlin and defined her work as editor of the American Studies Journal. As an advisory board member of the Salzburg Global American Studies Program, she continues to engage in transatlantic dialogue. Among her academic publications, FAMILY MATTERS is her first book-length fictional work.


“One University – One Book” Shared Reading of THE WHALE RIDER 🗓

“One University – One Book” Shared Reading of THE WHALE RIDER 🗓

This summer term, all members of JGU – students, teachers, administrative staff – are invited to come together to immerse themselves into Witi Ihimaera’s novel The Whale Rider. The book tells the story of Kahu, the daughter of a respectable Māori family, who struggles to take her place in the iwi (tribe) and win the love and respect of her grandfather, the chief of the iwi. It is a story of rejection and reconciliation, of tradition and renewal – and last but not least, it is a story of the deep connection between humans and nature. The plot seems familiar and yet wants to be read in its very own Māori traditions.

To foster cross-cultural exchange about the novel at our university and beyond, we have planned a number of events: a hybrid lecture series (Wednesdays from 08:00 pm to 9:30 pm (CET), starting April 26th; PDF), Q&As with experts from Mainz and New Zealand, a screening and discussion of Niki Caro’s 2002 film adaptation of the novel, several social (digital) exchange formats including a “New Zealand-week” at the university canteen. The project, which received an award from the Stifterverband and the Klaus Tschira Foundation as part of the “One University – One Book” program, welcomes you all to embark on a multidisciplinary exploration of New Zealand life and literature in times of critical debates about postcolonialism, decolonization and climate change.

Read with us – Get creative – Share your ideas > Check out the program

Apr 25 – Student/Alumni Meet & Greet 🗓

Apr 25 – Student/Alumni Meet & Greet 🗓

Student/Alumni Meet & Greet

Tuesday, April 25

6-8 pm in P 13 (Philosophicum)

The OI will be hosting an informal first meet & greet for students and alumni of American Studies and cordially invites all students of the BA and MA programs to connect with each other and our alumni. This is your chance to talk about possible careers after finishing an American Studies program and ask any question you might have on how to make the most of your degree and ambitions.

Two alumnae, who are holding qualified positions, will speak about their jobs and their working experiences to students interested in finding out more about opportunities and perspectives for American Studies graduates.

You an download the poster for the event here.

Watch out for news about future alumni events and stay in touch!


Dr. Sonja Georgi
Dr. Claudia Görg
Dr. Julia Velten