Alex Holznienkemper

Office: Languages, Literatures, & Cultures, Murkland Hall Rm G14, Durham, NH 03824
Alex Holznienkemper

Alex Holznienkemper is half German and half American, with all of his American side of the family stemming from NH. He grew up in Chicago and Virginia before moving to Germany at the age of ten and initially not enjoying German language, literature and philosophy at all! After completing his German Abitur, during his undergraduate studies at the University of Arizona (B.A. 2006 and M.A. 2008), he discovered a new passion for said literature and philosophy and he hasn’t looked back since (Ph.D. from Ohio State in 2014). In a broad sense, his research focuses on the intersection of literature and philosophy, examining more closely terrorist figures in secular times, as well as contemporary literature written by Germans with strong family roots outside of Germany (Turkey, the Balkans, Iraq, Japan). One overarching interest is in examining how agreement on substantive social norms is achieved (or not) in a multicultural, secular public sphere. Available online articles include: Interview with Christoph Möllers - English; Interview with Christoph Möllers - German; Nature Magazine - Letter to Editor - Blind Spot in March for Science; and  Berkley Center (Georgetown) - March for Science Blind Spot.


  • Ph.D., Germanic Languages, Ohio State University
  • M.A., University of Arizona
  • B.A., University of Arizona

Research Interests

  • Contemporary literature
  • Critical theory
  • Immigration
  • Literature and philosophy
  • Post-secularism
  • Sports

Courses Taught

  • GERM 401: Elementary German I
  • GERM 402: Elementary German II
  • GERM 504: Intermediate German II
  • GERM 525: Intro German Cult & Civiliztn
  • GERM 631: Adv Communication Skills I

Selected Publications

Holznienkemper, A. (2018). Language and Critical Theory. GERMAN QUARTERLY, 91(1), 92-94. Retrieved from

Holznienkemper, A. (2017). Blind spot in the March for Science. Nature, 543(7647), 623. doi:10.1038/543623b

Holznienkemper, A. (2017). Art as human Practice. An Aesthetics. MONATSHEFTE, 109(4), 680-681. Retrieved from

Holznienkemper, A. (2017). Der Souveränitätseffekt by Joseph Vogl. German Studies Review, 40(2), 477-479. doi:10.1353/gsr.2017.0086

Most Cited Publications