FUNDED PhD: Astronomy, Poetics, and Ideology in England, 1500-1800

The University of Bayreuth’s professorship of English Literature is seeking a researcher for a three-year project on “Cosmopoetic form-knowledge: astronomy, poetics, and ideology in England, 1500—1800,” funded by the German Research Foundation (www.englit.uni-bayreuth.de/en/research). The project considers ‘form-knowledge’ as a crucial factor in the history of science alongside ‘thing-knowledge’ and ‘people-knowledge’ (cf. Shapin, A Social History of Truth). Specifically, it examines the ways in which astronomical knowledge and the forms used for its mediation acquired, and utilized, ideological and poetological meaning in early modern England.

The successful candidate will conduct a diachronic study of popular pragmatic and didactic genres in which early modern English readers encountered astronomical knowledge, such as the almanac or the astronomy textbook. They will produce a monograph on the ways in which astronomy, in these texts, was linked with political and ideological issues; contribute to an open-access, online bibliography of primary texts for the period in question; and participate in project-related research activities. The position offers the opportunity to write a PhD thesis in this context, gain teaching experience at the University of Bayreuth’s Department of English and American Studies, and be part of the University of Bayreuth Graduate School.

Qualifications

We invite applications from candidates with:

  • a very good master’s degree in English literature, the history of science, comparative literature, history, media studies, or a comparable field;
  • excellent research skills;
  • excellent English language skills (spoken and written).

Experience in working with early modern prints, Latin/neo-Latin reading skills, and experience in digital content management are additional assets.

Conditions of employment

The position is part-time (65%) for three years. The University of Bayreuth offers a salary in accordance with the collective agreement for the public service of the German federal states (Tarifvertrag für dem öffentlichen Dienst der Länder, TV-L) at pay scale E13 (the specific salary will be determined according to individual qualification and professional experience).

The starting date is as soon as possible.

The University of Bayreuth actively supports equality, diversity and inclusion. We encourage women and international candidates to apply. Equally qualified candidates with disabilities or applicants with equivalent status receive preference in the application process.

Application

Please submit the following documents by 15 September 2019 as a single pdf file (max. 10MB) to Prof. Florian Klaeger at <klaeger@uni-bayreuth.de>:

  • a letter of motivation,
  • curriculum vitae (including copies of BA and MA degrees and respective transcripts of records) and names and contact details of two academic referees,
  • one writing sample (e.g., Master’s thesis).

If you have further questions about the position, you are welcome to contact us at the same address.

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