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Dr Jesper Gulddal Sorensen

Senior Lecturer

School of Humanities and Social Science (English)

Moving with the times

The University of Newcastle's Head of English, Dr Jesper Gulddal, has always been fascinated by travel adventure stories, but gone are the days when fictional characters were footloose and fancy free to navigate a plot's twists and turns on a whim.

Dr Jesper Gulddal 

"Traditionally, many novels based their plots on travelling and free mobility – on adventures encountered on the road," Dr Gulddal says. "But mobility of the carefree type – where you simply depart – ceased to exist in many places more than 200 years ago. Modernity is precisely an age of movement control, and my point is that this has deeply affected the genre of the novel."

Dr Gulddal has been focusing his research energies on a book project on movement control – passports, borders and immigration law – from the point of view of literary history. With the introduction of modern movement control as of the late 18th century, the free and easy style of narrative becomes more and more implausible.

An early example illustrating this is Henry Fielding's Tom Jones. This novel is still based on free mobility but at the same time, Fielding is keen to contain this mobility and the subversiveness associated with it. And he does that, Dr Gulddal notes, via formal innovations that echo the proposals for a British passport system he made as a London magistrate.

"But this is just the beginning of the story," Dr Gulddal says. "In the 19th century, the highly restrictive passport systems in continental Europe are associated with a type of novel driven by the attempts to subvert or avoid the control measures – Dickens's A Tale of Two Cities and Stendhal's The Charterhouse of Parma are good examples of this.

"And in the 20th century, the drama of the refugee or the stateless person confronted with closed borders becomes a key theme of many novels."

Often, the passport motif is used as a means of criticising movement control in the name of either individual freedom or social inclusiveness, Dr Gulddal says. "Think of a novel like T.C. Boyle's The Tortilla Curtain from 1995. What we find here is a fictional space totally dominated by different kinds of borders and movement restrictions. And the point seems to be these borders are ultimately just a means of upholding an unequal distribution of wealth, rights and opportunity. At the end of the day, they lead to misery on both sides.

"I'm also interested in the methodological implications of this research," Dr Gulddal adds. "I like to think of the passport motif as an interface that connects a specific historical mode of controlling movement and, on the other hand, a specific way of writing novels. In this sense, the passport motif doesn't just anchor a fictional text historically, but provides the starting point for a narrative interpretation of movement control as one of the defining institutions of modernity."

Dr Gulddal, who has a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Copenhagen (2005), completed his postdoctoral work at Cambridge before accepting a senior lecturer position at Newcastle in 2010.

His former research project focused on anti-Americanism and resulted in the monograph Anti-Americanism in European Literature.

"What interested me about anti-Americanism was not so much the topicality or the controversies, but rather the historical derivations and roots," Dr Gulddal says. "I wanted to explore how anti-Americanism is produced and activated in literary texts, how novels are crafted with a view to making an all-out assault on America. And I wanted to make the case as well that literature has been important in disseminating anti-American discourse to a wider audience."

Dr Gulddal explains that literary history is full of examples of authors juxtaposing European refinement and American boorishness. The story of the disillusioned European chasing the American dream and returning home unfulfilled – think of Dickens's Martin Chuzzlewit – is a perfect example of this.

Dr Jesper Gulddal highlight

Moving with the times

Dr Jesper Gulddal, has always been fascinated by travel adventure stories, but gone are the days when fictional characters were footloose and fancy free.

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Career Summary

Biography

Jesper Gulddal has a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Copenhagen (2005). He completed his postdoctoral work in Clare Hall College, University of Cambridge (2005-2010), and took up his present job as senior lecturer in English at the University of Newcastle in 2010. Main research interests: anti-Americanism in European literature, borders and passports in literature, new developments in literary theory and criticism.

Research Expertise
- 19th century literature - the novel - Literary Theory and Literary Criticism after "Theory" - Anti-Americanism in British and European Literature - Movement Control and Borders in literature



Qualifications

  • PhD, University of Copenhagen - Denmark
  • Cand Mag (MA) in Comparative Literature, University of Copenhagen - Denmark
  • Diploma in Higher Education (Learning & Teaching), University of Copenhagen - Denmark

Keywords

  • 19th-century literature
  • 20th-century literature
  • Anti-Americanism in European literature
  • Comparative literature
  • Detective fiction
  • History of the novel
  • Literary theory and criticism
  • Movement control and passports in literature
  • World Literature

Languages

  • German (Fluent)
  • French (Fluent)

Fields of Research

CodeDescriptionPercentage
200599Literary Studies not elsewhere classified50
209999Language, Communication and Culture not elsewhere classified50

Professional Experience

UON Appointment

DatesTitleOrganisation / Department
29/11/2014 - Senior LecturerUniversity of Newcastle
School of Humanities and Social Science
Australia

Academic appointment

DatesTitleOrganisation / Department
1/01/2009 - 1/01/2010Conjoint Research Fellow University of Copenhagen
Denmark
1/01/2006 - 1/01/2009Carlsberg Research FellowUniversity of Cambridge
United Kingdom
1/01/2006 - 1/01/2010Postdoctoral AssociateUniversity of Cambridge
United Kingdom
1/01/2005 - 1/01/2006Clare Hall Visiting FellowUniversity of Cambridge
United Kingdom
1/01/2004 - 1/01/2005LecturerUniversity of Copenhagen
Denmark
1/01/2001 - 1/01/2004Senior LecturerUniversity of Copenhagen
Denmark
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Publications

For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.


Book (7 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2011Gulddal J, Anti-Americanism in European Literature, Palgrave Macmillan, New York, NY, 252 (2011) [A1]
2008Sorensen JG, Literary Passport Regimes. Movement Control and Identification in European Literature 1725-1875, Museum Tusculanum/The University of Copenhagen Press, Copenhagen, Denmark, 411 (2008) [A1]
2004Gulddal J, Mortensen M, Pas. Identitet, kultur og grænser ("Passports. Identity, Culture and Borders"), Information, Copenhagen, 176 (2004)
2003Gulddal J, Friedrich Schlegel og hermeneutikken. Fragmenter af en teori om forståelsen [Friedrich Schlegel's Hermeneutics. Fragments of a Theory of Understanding], Museum Tusculanum - University of Copenhagen Press, Copenhagen, 116p (2003)
2000Schlegel F, Athenäum fragmenter og andre skrifter [Athenaeum Fragments and Other Writings], Gyldendal, Copenhagen, 275 (2000)
2000Schlegel F, Athenäum fragmenter og andre skrifter [Athenaeum Fragments and Other Writings], Gyldendal, Copenhagen, 275 (2000)
1999Gulddal J, Møller M, Ricoeur P, et al, Hermeneutik. En antologi on forståelsen [Hermeneutics. An Anthology on Understanding"], Gyldendal, Copenhagen, 293p (1999)
Show 4 more books

Chapter (4 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2015Sorensen JG, 'Tolkning', Litteratur. Introduktion till teori och analys, Studentlitteratur, Lund 25-35 (2015)
2013Gulddal J, 'Slanderous Stories. Anti-Americanism in Contemporary European Literature', Expanding the Frontiers of Comparative Literature. Toward an Age of Tolerance., Chung-Ang University Press, Seoul 145-155 (2013) [B1]
2012Sorensen JG, 'Fortolkning', Litteratur. Introduktion til teori og analyse, Aarhus Universitetsforlag, Aarhus 23-33 (2012) [B1]
2005Gulddal J, 'Mistænkelige fremmede. Mobilitet og identitet hos Henry Fielding', Europas andre, Tiderne Skifter, Copenhagen 89-100 (2005)
Show 1 more chapter

Journal article (21 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2015Sorensen J, Rolls A, 'Mobile Criticism: Pierre Bayard's Irreverent Hermeneutics', Australian Journal of French Studies, 52 37-52 (2015)
Co-authorsAlistair Rolls
2015Gulddal J, 'The Novel and the Passport: Towards a Literary History of Movement Control', Comparative Literature, 67 131-144 (2015)
DOI10.1215/00104124-2890937
2014Sorensen JG, 'Review of Heide Reinhäckel, Traumatische Texturen. Der 11. September in der deutschen Gegenwartsliteratur 354-356 (2014) [C3]
2014Gulddal J, 'Paper trails: The Austrian passport system in stendhal's la chartreuse de Parme', Arcadia, 49 58-73 (2014) [C1]

A striking yet overlooked feature of Stendhal's La Chartreuse de Parme (1839) is the prominence that this novel accords to passports and movement control practices. This feature i... [more]

A striking yet overlooked feature of Stendhal's La Chartreuse de Parme (1839) is the prominence that this novel accords to passports and movement control practices. This feature is a product of the novel's historical surroundings. During the post-Napoleonic Restoration, the passport had become a favoured instrument of power for absolutist governments across Europe, and the Austrian Empire in particular had set up a notoriously restrictive passport system, extending also to the Austrian possessions and client states in Northern Italy - the scene of Stendhal's narrative. Tracing the numerous references to the Austrian movement control regime, this article argues that the passport motif should be seen, not simply as a "reality effect" or a metaphor for identity conflicts, but as an interface linking a specific political practice and a specific literary form. Thus, the novel provides ample historically accurate information about the contemporary passport system, yet at the same time uses this information as a structuring device that crucially informs the articulation of its space, plot, and major themes. By virtue of this structural centrality, the passport motif opens up a new political dimension in a novel that has often been seen simply as an escapist fantasy.

DOI10.1515/arcadia-2014-0004
2014Gulddal J, 'Henry fieldings proposals for an internal British passport system', ANQ - Quarterly Journal of Short Articles Notes and Reviews, 27 153-157 (2014) [C1]
DOI10.1080/0895769X.2014.997628
2014Gulddal J, 'Paper Trails. The Austrian Passport System in Stendhal¿s La Chartreuse de Parme', Arcadia, 49 58-73 (2014) [C1]
2013Sorensen JG, 'Narratives of Resentment: Notes towards a Literary History of European Anti-Americanism', New Literary History: a journal of theory and interpretation, 44 493-513 (2013) [C1]
2013Gulddal J, 'PASSPORT PLOTS: B. TRAVEN'S DAS TOTENSCHIFF AND THE CHRONOTOPE OF MOVEMENT CONTROL', German Life and Letters, 66 292-307 (2013) [C1]
DOI10.1111/glal.12017Author URL
2013Sorensen JG, Sneddon HL, 'War stories: Narrative sense-making in German Eastern front soldier memoirs', Sic! A Journal of Literature, Culture and Literary Translation, 2 1-8 (2013) [C1]
2012Sorensen JG, 'Contrasting visions: Perceptions of America in Henrik Ibsen's Pillars of Society', Nineteenth-Century Contexts, 34 289-304 (2012) [C1]
2009Gulddal J, 'The Most Hateful Land. Romanticism and the Birth of Modern Anti-Americanism', Journal of European Studies (Chalfont Saint Giles), 39 419-454 (2009) [C1]
DOI10.1177/0047244109344796
CitationsScopus - 2Web of Science - 1
2009Sorensen JG, 'The Most Hateful Land. Romanticism and the Birth of Modern Anti-Americanism', Journal of European Studies (Chalfont Saint Giles), 39 419-454 (2009) [C1]
DOI10.1177/0047244109344796
CitationsScopus - 2Web of Science - 1
2007Gulddal J, 'En supermagt ser rødt. Antiamerikanisme i europæisk samtidslitteratur', Kritik, 2-21 (2007)
2007Sorensen JG, 'A Superpower goes crazy. Anti-Americanism in Contemporary European Literature', Kritik, 184 2-21 (2007) [C1]
2007Sorensen JG, 'En supermagt ser rødt. Antiamerikanisme i europæisk samtidslitteratur (A Superpower goes crazy. Anti-Americanism in Contemporary European Literature)', Kritik, 2-21 (2007)
2007Sorensen JG, 'The One Great Hyperpower in the Sky. Anti-Americanism in Contemporary European Literature', Cambridge Review of International Affairs, 20 677-692 (2007) [C1]
DOI10.1080/09557570701680720
2006Sorensen JG, 'Land of Destruction. Aspects of Literary Anti--Americanism in the Interwar Years', Passage, 55 17-36 (2006) [C1]
2004Sorensen JG, 'På flugt. Den romantiske individualitet i Stendhals La Chartreuse de Parme (On the Run. Romantic Individuality in Stendhal¿s La Chartreuse de Parme)', Litteraturkritik & Romantikstudier, 3-14 (2004)
2004Gulddal J, 'Beskyttelse, bevægelseskontrol, identifikation. Træk af pasvæsenets historie', Politik, 7 13-22 (2004)
2003Gulddal J, 'Das 'bessere' und das 'gerade so gute' Verstehen. Friedrich Schlegels hermeneutischer Dobbelblick"', Text & Kontext, 25 33-64 (2003)
2000Sorensen JG, 'Plottet mod plottet. Nicholson Baker og den ikke-lineære roman (The Plot Against the Plot. Nicholson Baker and the Non-Linear Novel)', K&K, 71-95 (2000)
Show 18 more journal articles

Review (1 outputs)

YearCitationAltmetricsLink
2015Sorensen JG, 'Review of: Pierre Bayard, Il existe d'autres mondes (2015)
DOI10.1093/fs/knv001
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Grants and Funding

Summary

Number of grants7
Total funding$13,500

Click on a grant title below to expand the full details for that specific grant.


20151 grants / $2,000

American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA) Convention, Washington USA, 26-29 March 2015$2,000

Funding body: University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts

Funding bodyUniversity of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts
Project TeamDoctor Jesper Gulddal Sorensen
SchemeTravel Grant
RoleLead
Funding Start2015
Funding Finish2015
GNoG1500096
Type Of FundingInternal
CategoryINTE
UONY

20132 grants / $2,000

XXth Congress of the International Comparative Literature Association, Sorbonne, Paris, 18- 24 July 2013$1,500

Funding body: University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts

Funding bodyUniversity of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts
Project TeamDoctor Jesper Gulddal Sorensen
SchemeTravel Grant
RoleLead
Funding Start2013
Funding Finish2013
GNoG1300346
Type Of FundingInternal
CategoryINTE
UONY

Liberty and Limits 1789-1920, Sydney Australia, 5-6 December 2013$500

Funding body: University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts

Funding bodyUniversity of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts
Project TeamDoctor Jesper Gulddal Sorensen
SchemeTravel Grant
RoleLead
Funding Start2013
Funding Finish2013
GNoG1301336
Type Of FundingInternal
CategoryINTE
UONY

20121 grants / $1,500

Migration, memory and Place, University of Copenhagen, 5 - 7 December 2012$1,500

Funding body: University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts

Funding bodyUniversity of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts
Project TeamDoctor Jesper Gulddal Sorensen
SchemeTravel Grant
RoleLead
Funding Start2012
Funding Finish2012
GNoG1200794
Type Of FundingInternal
CategoryINTE
UONY

20112 grants / $6,500

Movement Control in Twentieth Century Fiction$5,000

Funding body: University of Newcastle

Funding bodyUniversity of Newcastle
Project TeamDoctor Jesper Gulddal Sorensen
SchemeNew Staff Grant
RoleLead
Funding Start2011
Funding Finish2011
GNoG1001045
Type Of FundingInternal
CategoryINTE
UONY

The Politics of Anti-Americanism Princeton Univeristy, May 13 2011$1,500

Funding body: University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts

Funding bodyUniversity of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts
Project TeamDoctor Jesper Gulddal Sorensen
SchemeTravel Grant
RoleLead
Funding Start2011
Funding Finish2011
GNoG1100295
Type Of FundingInternal
CategoryINTE
UONY

20101 grants / $1,500

XIXth Congress of the Int'l Comp. Lit. Association, Chung-Ang University, Seoul, South Korea, 15 - 21 August 2010$1,500

Funding body: University of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts

Funding bodyUniversity of Newcastle - Faculty of Education and Arts
Project TeamDoctor Jesper Gulddal Sorensen
SchemeTravel Grant
RoleLead
Funding Start2010
Funding Finish2010
GNoG1000750
Type Of FundingInternal
CategoryINTE
UONY
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Research Supervision

Current Supervision

CommencedResearch Title / Program / Supervisor Type
2015The Fin(n)ish Line: Cultural Identity Formation in Second Generation Australians
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Co-Supervisor
2015From Generation to Generation: Searching Through the Archives of History and Memory
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Co-Supervisor
2015Jane Austen and the Garden, Landscape and Nature
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Principal Supervisor
2014Deception - Do Fiction Novels with a Historical Content Lead to Reader Deception of the Facts? Is it Essential to Tell Lies or Represent a Perspective and Interpretation of Historical Events to Create Character, Plot and Narrative?
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Co-Supervisor
2013Modernism and the Russian Fantastic: A Comparative Analysis
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Principal Supervisor
2011The Weight of a Human Heart
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Principal Supervisor
2011Illness in Memoir
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Co-Supervisor

Past Supervision

YearResearch Title / Program / Supervisor Type
2015Taking My Breath
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Co-Supervisor
2014Georges Simenon and the Terrain Vague: Indirect Representations of War
Language and Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Co-Supervisor
2013What Came Between - Short Story Cycle and Critical Exegesis
Literature, Faculty of Education and Arts
Co-Supervisor
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News

Research Directions 2013/2014

Research Directions 2013/2014

May 16, 2014

The new edition of Research Directions from the Faculty of Education and Arts is now available.

Dr Jesper Gulddal Sorensen

Position

Senior Lecturer
English
School of Humanities and Social Science
Faculty of Education and Arts

Focus area

English

Contact Details

Emailjesper.gulddal@newcastle.edu.au
Phone(02) 4921 5166

Office

RoomMC 135
BuildingMcMullin Building
LocationCallaghan
University Drive
Callaghan, NSW 2308
Australia
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