Axel Fliethmann

Assoc Professor

Accepting PhD Students

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Personal profile


Axel Fliethmann is an internationally recognized scholar in the fields of literary theory, media philology and theory of the image.

He studied Literature, History and Philosophy at the University of Cologne (Germany) where he also received his PhD (Dr. phil.). Before joining the School of Languages, Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics at Monash in 2002, he was a post-doctoral fellow at the research centre for “Medien und Kulturelle Kommunikation” (Centre for media and cultural communication) at the University of Cologne.

His first monograph Stellenlektüre. Stifter. Foucault, published by Niemeyer in 2001, is one of the few works in the area of philology and literary theory, which analyses historically and systematically two central but theoretically mostly ignored concepts in literary studies: the concept of the quoted or paraphrased  “passage” and the use of “analogies” in literary interpretation.

His second monograph “Texte über Bilder. Zur Gegenwart der Renaissance“ (Texts about Images. On Renaissance Today), published by Rombach in 2014, is an attempt to establish media philology as a new field of inquiry between traditional philologies and media theories.

He is also one of the co-founders and co-editors of the peer-reviewed journal Limbus. Australian Yearbook of German Literary and Cultural Studies and was invited by Thesis Eleven, a leading Australian journal of Critical Theory to edit a Special Issue on German media philosopher Friedrich Kittler (published 2011). He has published widely on literary theory, visual cultures, and media philology.

He currently works on Renaissance image theories and investigates connections between material images and concepts of imagination in Early Modern Times, in particular intersections between image technologies, the formation of the modern concept imagination in aesthetic theory, and pathologies of imagination in medical discourse.

Axel Fliethmann is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities.

Research area keywords

  • Media Philology
  • Renaissance
  • Literary Theory
  • Visual Culture
  • History of Ideas
  • Imagination


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