School of Humanities and Sciences
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Ph.D. Student in German Studies, admitted Autumn 2023
BioMy name is Bertrand C. Ngong. I am originally from Cameroon, a Central African country that still bears the scars of German colonial presence in linguistic, architectural, toponymic, cultural, political, and even memorial aspects to this day. Growing up, this dual African and German heritage became deeply ingrained in me, guiding my steps first toward Germanic studies and then towards African studies. My reflections aim to comprehend how these two legacies interconnect, mutually influence each other, and shape the present-day relations between the German-speaking cultural space and Africa. I am particularly interested in the cultural and intellectual productions of Black people in the German language and/or about Germany. Historically, I investigate the African sources of the historiography of German colonization in Black Africa. Moreover, I closely follow current German-African affairs, especially concerning issues of reparations, restitution of artworks, and repatriation of African remains stolen during German colonization in Black Africa. Lastly, my reflections also seek to challenge and decolonize a certain perception of Germanic studies that would limit this field exclusively to the borders of Germany and Germanic countries.
Bryan Nelson Norton
BioBryan Norton is a member of the Stanford Society of Fellows, where he is currently completing a monograph on political ecology and technical media in German romanticism. He is the co- editor of a forthcoming volume on Bernard Stiegler, and his writings have appeared in Theory, Culture and Society, Symphilosophie, the Goethe Lexicon of Philosophical Concepts, and the LA Review of Books. In 2022, Norton received his PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Pennsylvania. He has held visiting appointments at Goethe University Frankfurt, Humboldt University Berlin, and Paris Viii.