Kata Gellen

Kata Gellen

Associate Professor of German

Kata Gellen’s main research areas are twentieth-century literature, German-Jewish studies, and film studies. Her work focuses on transformations in perception, narrative form, and linguistic possibility in the literature and film of German-language modernism. Her first book project, Kafka and Noise: The Discovery of Cinematic Sound in Literary Modernism (Northwestern University Press, 2019) employs ideas about sound in film theory and practice to analyze the many unexpected noises, voices, and silences throughout the writings of Franz Kafka. Her next project, Shtetl Modern: The Literary Imagination of Jewish Futures in World War II Europe, examines a set of novels about Eastern European Jewry that are often regarded as nostalgic and backward-looking; Gellen argues that these works in fact comprise a highly critical and formally innovative reflection on the possibilities for Jewish existence in twentieth-century Europe. She has published articles on Franz Kafka, Joseph Roth, Elias Canetti, Robert Musil, and Rainer Maria Rilke, as well as a series of essays on Weimar Cinema. A further area of interest is postwar Austrian literature and film, in particular the writings of Thomas Bernhard and the films of Michael Haneke and Ulrich Seidl.

  • Ph.D., German, Princeton
Office Phone: 
(919) 660-3168
Office Location: 
116B Old Chemistry

Home Institution: Duke University

  • Music and Sound
  • Jewish Studies
  • Film, Media and Visual Studies
  • Austrian Studies
  • Twentieth Century
  • Modernism
Curriculum Vitae: