My broad research interest is in German national identity; how it has been experienced, theorized, and understood historically by both Germans and non-Germans since the early eighteenth century. More specifically, I explore the eighteenth-century intellectual antecedents of nineteenth-century German nationalism.
I have worked on the political thought of the nationalist philosopher Johann Gottlieb Fichte (1762-1814), and the life and thought of Friedrich Ludwig Jahn (1778-1852), a key nationalist activist in Prussia during the Napoleonic era. Other research interests include eighteenth-century philosophy of language, and the relationship between political and physical cultures.
My current project is a history of national character as a German political and cultural category in the long eighteenth century.