Prof. Dr. Sabine N. Meyer

© Sabine N. Meyer

Academic Profile

Professor Sabine N. Meyer is Co-director of the North American Studies Program at the University of Bonn, Germany. Her research primarily focuses on Native American writing and law/politics from the nineteenth century onward, on representations of Native Americans/Indigenous people in North American popular culture and on the history of social movements, (forced) migration and processes of identity formation (ethnicity, race, gender) in the United States. Professor Meyer is the author of We Are What We Drink: The Temperance Battle in Minnesota (University of Illinois Press, 2015) and Native Removal Writing: Narratives of Peoplehood, Politics, and Law (University of Oklahoma Press, 2022). In this book, Professor Meyer engages with a broad range of Native American writings on Indian Removal from the 19th to the 21st centuries that negotiate forms of belonging —the identities of Native collectives, their proprietary relationships, and their most intimate relations among one another. By analyzing these writings in light of domestic settler colonial, international, and tribal law, she reveals their coherence as a distinct genre of Native literature that has played a significant role in negotiating Indigenous identity.

Meyer’s new project, "Entangled Lives, Entangled Freedom(s): The Transformative Potential of Contemporary Black Indigenous Expression," seeks to analyze the rapidly growing, diverse body of work produced since the turn of the 21st century by writers, artists, activists identifying as African Native American/Black Indigenous. The corpus of materials to be examined includes: literature across the genres; artwork and museum exhibitions; films/documentaries; various forms of online content. These primary texts will be subjected to contextualized, close readings with the aim to shed light on their active role in envisioning what it means to be Black and Indigenous and in gauging the potentialities inherent in recalibrating dominant binary conceptions of identity – in short, to move from Black/Indigenous to Black Indigenous.

Habilitation; Venia Legendi, Amerikanistik/American Studies, University of Osnabrück, Germany

Ph.D. in American Studies, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany

M.A. in American Studies, Medieval and Early Modern History; First State Examination (Teacher's Degree) in English, History, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany

Graduate courses in American Studies and Immigration History, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, USA.

since 2021
Professor of American Studies, Co-Director North American Studies Program, University of Bonn, Germany

Kulturpolitische Koordinatorin, Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe (LWL)

2011–2015, 2016, 2019–2020
Assistant Professor of American Studies (Akademische Rätin auf Zeit), Institute for English and American Studies, University of Osnabrück, Germany; coordinator of the Osnabrück Summer Institute on the Cultural Study of the Law (OSI)

Research position sponsored by the German Research Foundation (DFG) ("Sachbeihilfe"/ Eigene Stelle); overall research project: "The Claims of History: Native and National Narratives of Land as Property in the U.S." ("Eigentumsgeschichte(n): Land als Eigentum in Indigenen und Nationalen Narrativen in den USA"); Principal Investigator of the sub-project: "From Removal to Indigenism: Property Discourses in Native American Removal Literature"

Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study "Law as Culture" (Käte Hamburger Kolleg "Recht als Kultur"), University of Bonn, Germany

Lecturer (Lehrkraft f. besondere Aufgaben) in American Cultural Studies, American Studies Department, University of Münster, Germany

Lecturer (Lehrkraft f. besondere Aufgaben) in Literary and Cultural Didactics, English Literary and Cultural Didactics, University of Münster, Germany

since 2021
Member of research project "(Ent-)Demokratisierung und Machtstrukturen" (TRA-Research project)

since 2021
Member of the DFG-funded graduate school/DFG-Graduiertenkolleg 2291 Gegenwart/Literatur. Geschichte, Theorie und Praxeologie eines Verhältnisses

Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study "Law as Culture" (Käte Hamburger Kolleg "Recht als Kultur"), University of Bonn, Germany

  • Editorial board member of Brill Research Perspectives in Art and Law
  • General editor of book series Routledge Research in Transnational Indigenous Perspectives (together with Birgit Däwes and Karsten Fitz)

since 2023
Feodor Lynen Research Fellowship for Experienced Researchers; host institution: University of Minnesota, USA (2023, 2025)

Participant of Erstklassig!, a competitive mentoring program for outstanding young female scholars of the University of Münster, Germany

Ph.D. scholarship by the Cusanuswerk

Participation in the Bucerius Seminar in the United States (funded by the Zeit Foundation, the GHI in Washington D.C., USA, and the University of Chicago, USA)

Research scholarship by the federal state Rhineland-Palatinate

Scholarship by the Cusanuswerk

Scholarship to study abroad ("Nordamerikaprogramm") by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)


  • 2022. Native Removal Writing: Narratives of Peoplehood, Politics, and Law. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press.
  • 2015. We Are What We Drink: The Temperance Battle in Minnesota. Urbana: University of Illinois Press.


Journal articles

  • 2021. "Transculturality and Filmic Practice: Cultural Difference and Transcultural Belonging in Babel (2006)." In Zeitschrift für Australienstudien/Australian Studies Journal. Special Issue: Narrating Lives – Telling (Hi)stories: Transcultural Readings 35: 97–109.
  • 2020. "Die Macht des Erinnerns – 'Deutsche Erinnerungskultur' und (Post-)Kolonialismus." In Kulturpolitische Mitteilungen 171(4), Themenheft Kulturelles Erbe und Erinnerungskultur: 38–39.
  • 2019. "'Poetry [Film] = Anger x Imagination': Intermediality, the Synthesis of Poetry and Film, and Cross-Cultural Belonging in Sherman Alexie’s The Business of Fancydancing." In American Indian Quarterly 43(1): 36–73.
  • 2017. "From Federal Indian Law to Indigenous Rights: Legal Discourse and the Contemporary Native American Novel on the Indian Removal." In Law & Literature 29(2): 269–290.
  • 2016. "'A Strong Antidote against Unbelief and Seduction': Carl Friedrich Scheibler's The Life and Fates of Pokahuntas (1781) and the German Theological Enlightenment." In Eighteenth-Century Studies 49(3): 371–389.

Book chapters

  • 2024. With Stefan Benz. "Zum Verhältnis von Widerstand, Klang und Spiritualität in den indigenen Literaturen Nordamerikas. Eine ambiguitätstheoretische Betrachtung." In Ambiguität, Macht und die Formulierung religiöser Identitäten, edited by Klaus von Stosch and Cornelia Dockter, 45–65. Freiburg: Herder. 
  • 2023. "'I was nothing but a bare skeleton walking the path': Biopolitics and Life in Diane Glancy's Pushing the Bear." In Biopolitics – Geopolitics – Life: Settler Colonialisms and Indigenous Presences, edited by René Dietrich and Kerstin Knopf, 177–96. Durham: Duke UP.
  • 2022. "COVID-19 as a Magnifying Glass: Native America between Vulnerability and (Self-)Empowerment." In Corona Normativities II – The Permanence of the Exception, edited by Werner Gephart and Jure Leko, 223–50. Frankfurt: Vittorio Klostermann.
  • 2017. "From Domestic Dependency to Native Cultural Sovereignty: A Legal Reading of Gerald Vizenor’s Chair of Tears." In Native American Survivance, Memory, and Futurity: The Gerald Vizenor Continuum, edited by Birgit Däwes and Alexandra Hauke, 119–34. New York: Routledge.
  • 2017. "Law and the Map: Indigenous Art and the Remapping of the Settler State." In Law and the Arts: Elective Affinities and Relationships of Tension, edited by Werner Gephardt and Jure Leko, 315–40. Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann.
  • 2016. "Incorporating the Indigenous Rights Subject: Environmental Justice, Human Rights, and Independent Film." In Comparative Indigenous Studies, edited by Mita Banerjee, 83–112. Heidelberg: Winter.
  • 2015. "In the Shadow of the Marshall Court: Nineteenth-Century Cherokee Conceptualizations of the Law." In Twenty-First Century Perspectives on Indigenous Studies: Native North America in (Trans)Motion, edited by Sabine N. Meyer, Birgit Däwes, and Karsten Fitz, 148–71. New York: Routledge.
  • 2015. "The Marshall Trilogy and Its Legacies." In The Routledge Companion to Native American Literature, edited by Deborah L. Madsen, 123–34. New York: Routledge.

For a complete list of publications, see here

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