Research interests

Information about current and past research projects

Research projects and research cooperation

The Projekt QuaDramA is a DH research project funded by the initiative Mixed Methods in den Geisteswissenschaften of the VW Foundation.

Project leadership: Dr. Marcus Willand and Dr. Nils Reiter

The Centrum für reflektierte Textanalyse (CRETA) (Centre for Reflected Text Analytics) focuses on the development of technical methods and general workflow methods for text analysis in the research field of Digital Humanities. The methods are to be developed and applied across disciplines on text-analytical questions from literature, linguistics, history, social science and philosophy. The function of the methods is to be made comprehensible in order for the user to be able to implement it in a reflected manner in interaction with data visualization and computer linguistics.

Those involved in the project from NDL: Prof. Dr. Sandra Richter, Sandra Murr, Dr. Axel Pichler


Quantitative Criticism studies refers to an approach in literary studies that employs methods of counting and measuring, as well as mathematical, statistical, empirical and computer-based methods in the analysis and interpretation of literary texts. So far, there has been no comprehensive systematic and diachronic research that investigates and documents the historical development of quantitative methods in German literary studies. This is surprising, given that quantitative methods have been employed in literary studies since the beginning of the nineteenth century and are of central interest to current debates in the context of the digital humanities.

The aim of this project is 1) to reconstruct the historical development of quantitative methods in (German) literary studies, 2) to categorise and systematise quantitative methods in view of the respective problems and questions to which they have been applied, and 3) to locate them within the historical development of methods, disciplines and theories in German literature studies and literature studies of other languages.The project will begin with a historical overview and a closer look at three periods, during which quantitative methods flourished: the years around 1900, the period reaching from about 1950 to about 1980, and the recent development since the year 2000. This overview will set the stage for the main part of the investigation which will be guided by the following questions: Which problems were quantitative methods applied to at which times? What where the circumstances that favoured or hindered the application of quantitative methods? While the focus of the project will be on German literary studies, connections will be drawn to literary studies of other languages. This comparative approach will ensure that the results of the project rest on a well-founded historical and methodological basis, it will provide links to other philologies, and it will help to illuminate the theoretical and historical background of the digital humanities.

Funded by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG).

Project leadership: PD. Dr. Toni Bernhart

The DFG network Empirisierung des Transzendentalen deals with the epistemological prerequisites and manifestations of modernity in science, literature and art around 1900.

Project Leadership: PD Dr. Philip Ajouri and PD Dr. Benjamin Specht

ePoetics – Korpuserschließung und Visualisierung deutschsprachiger Poetiken (1770–1960) für den ‚Algorithmic Criticism‘ (Development of corpus and visualization of German-language poetics for ‘Algorithmic Criticism’) is a cooperation project of the University of Stuttgart and the Technical University of Darmstadt funded by BMBF. The aim of the study is to prepare a selection of twenty German-language poetics from the period from 1770 to 1960 as a digital text corpus and to analyse and visualise them using methods from information technology in conjunction with those from hermeneutics. For this purpose, interactive analysis and visualization tools will be developed that can be used after the project in the field of digital humanities.

Project Leadership: Prof. Dr. Thomas Ertl, Prof. Dr. Jonas Kuhn, Prof. Dr. Sandra Richter, Prof. Dr. Andrea Rapp

In the international Suhrkamp-Forschungskolleg, funded by the Volkswagen Foundation, employees of the German Literary Archive in Marbach and university cooperation partners are intensively and systematically researching the Siegfried Unseld Archive. This has been located in Marbach since 2009.

The network Sprachen des Sammelns (Languages of Collecting) turns to literature as a medium in which literature is collected under its own conditions and, at the same time, its collections are reflected on. This is done, against the background of the current business activities of a material culture and the associated increased interest over the last twenty years in collecting as well as in collections from the cultural sciences and humanities. Literature is understood as an uncommitted, imaginative body of writing in its narrow sense, which has become generally accepted since the “age of the saddle". However, one historical focus of the investigations is on the 19th and 20th centuries. In the discussion of collecting, primarily its epistemic significance is to be examined, i.e. collecting is understood as a form of knowledge in which different cultures of knowledge manifest themselves depending on the medium and order structure of the collection. With reference to literature, the question is pursued on the peculiarities and media possibilities of literature(s) as a medium of collection.

Project Leadership: Dr. Sarah Schmidt

Within the framework of the DAAD-funded partnership of German Studies institutes, the German Studies departments of the Université de Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, and the University of Stuttgart have been conducting regular research and teaching exchanges since 2012.

Project Leadership: PD Dr. Annette Bühler-Dietrich, Prof. Dr. Daniel Hole

The project Literatur und Kultur im deutschen Südwesten is dedicated to writers, artists and scientists who have unjustly been forgotten as well as forgotten topics of southwest German cultural history - in scientific and cultural events, in lectures and, not least, in book publications.

Project Leadership: Apl. Prof. Dr. Barbara Potthast

To the top of the page