Dr. Sabine N. Meyer

University of Osnabrück

Curriculum Vitae

Sabine N. Meyer studied at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, USA, and at Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, where she obtained her first state examination in English and History as well as a M.A. degree in American Studies and History in 2005. In 2010, she received her PhD with a thesis entitled “Hopping on or off the Water Wagon? The Temperance Movement in St. Paul, Minnesota, 1848-1919.” Dr. Meyer taught American Studies and Literary and Cultural Didactics at Westfälische Wilhelms-University Münster. Since 2011, she is Assistant Professor for American Studies at the Institute for English and American Studies at the University of Osnabrück, where she is working on her second book titled “Visions of Peoplehood and Indigenous Futurity in Native American Removal Literature” (working title). Furthermore, she is coordinator of the Osnabrück Summer Institute on the Cultural Study of the Law and co-editor of the series Routledge Research in Transnational Indigenous Perspectives. Her research focuses on social movements (esp. the temperance movement), migration and identity in United States history, representations of Native Americans in American popular culture as well as law and indigenous literature. Dr. Meyer received numerous research grants and scholarships. Her research was funded by the Cusanuswerk, and she was a participant of "Erstklassig!" – a program geared toward promoting outstanding young scholars – at the Westfälische Wilhelms-University Münster.  Moreover, she received the award for the best dissertation in the field of Historical Cultural Studies 2009/10 at the Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz. From April 2015 to March 2016, Sabine N. Meyer was a Fellow at the Käte Hamburger Center for Advanced Study in the Humanities “Law as Culture.”

Research project

The Indian Removal in Native American Literature and the Law

My project seeks to contribute to the unraveling of the intricacies between law and Native American literature by reading Anglo-American legal codifications of Native American sovereignty, property, and land ownership in dynamic relation with Native American novels on the so-called Indian Removal. The term removal denotes a distinct period in the history of United States Indian policy, from the late 1820s through the early 1840s, during which Anglo-American law shaped Native American lives to a heretofore unprecedented degree. During this time, the federal government, urged by President Andrew Jackson, forced most of the remaining eastern tribes to migrate west of the Mississippi River in order to get access to their land and resources. I aim at exploring how Native removal literature from the 1850s to the present day negotiates – both thematically and aesthetically – the legal debates about sovereignty, property, and land ownership that were at the heart of the removal controversy.

Publications (selected)

  • We Are What We Drink: The Temperance Battle in Minnesota. Champaign: University of Illinois Press 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 (ed. by Sabine N. Meyer, Birgit Däwes and Karsten Fitz), New York: Routledge 2015.
  • The Marshall Trilogy and Its Legacies, in: The Routledge Companion to Native American Literature (ed. by Deborah Madsen), New York: Routledge 2015.
  • Sculpting the Indigenous Rights Subject: Environmental Justice, Human Rights, and Independent Film, in: Comparative Indigenous Studies (ed. by Mita Banerjee and Sonja Georgi), Heidelberg: Winter 2015 (im Erscheinen).
  • The World Was Not Made for Men: Representations of Native Americans in Yakari, in: Ethnoscripts 15.1 (2013), pp. 86-100.
  • “If you're an Indian, why don't you write nature poetry?” The Environment in Selected Works of Sherman Alexie, in: Ecology and Life Writing (ed. by Alfred Hornung and Zao Baisheng), Heidelberg: Winter 2013, pp. 143-60.
  • From Nationalism to Cosmopolitanism? Contemporary Native American Literature and the Transnational Turn, in: Transnational American Studies (ed. by Udo Hebel), Heidelberg: Winter 2012, pp. 283-303.
  • „Mak[ing] Noble, Law-Abiding Citizens“: Scientific Temperance Instruction in American Public Schools, in: Education and the USA (ed. by Laurenz Volkmann), Heidelberg: Winter 2011, pp. 71-86.
  • Negotiations of Settler Imperialism in American Popular Culture around the Turn of the Twentieth Century, in: Provincializing the United States: Colonialism, Decolonization, and (Post)Colonial Governance in Transnational Perspective (ed. by Ursula Lehmkuhl, Norbert Finzsch and Eva Bischoff), Heidelberg: Winter 2014, pp. 65-87.
  • Worcester v. Georgia (1832), in: Multicultural America: A Multimedia Encyclopedia (ed. by Carlos E. Cortés), Thousand Oaks: SAGE Reference 2013, pp. 2184-85.