Ph.D. Washington University in St. Louis
M.A. University of Illinois at Chicago
B.A. University of Illinois at Chicago


Dr. Malakaj specializes in late-18th- to 21st-century German media and cultural history. His research focuses on 19th-century literary cultures, film history (Imperial Germany, Weimar Germany, cinema of the 60s and 70s), narrative theory, queer theory, and critical pedagogy.

Dr. Malakaj is currently writing a book examining the influence of fluctuating literary markets on authorial agency and narrative form provisionally titled Fragile Literary Cultures in Early Imperial Germany. Part and parcel of this research is his work on a volume titled The Becoming and Afterlife of Literature: Agents in the German Literary Field (co-edited with Vance Byrd).

Scholarship in film studies includes a second book project, which will examine the primacy of melodramatic form in the articulation of queer experiences in popular culture and the intellectual sphere of Weimar Germany. In addition, Dr. Malakaj is completing an article, which examines the queer potential of slapstick in Ernst Lubitsch’s early comedies. This article is part of his work on an edited volume titled An Interdisciplinary Companion to Slapstick Cultures (co-edited with Alena Lyons and under advanced contract with de Gruyter).

In 2016, Dr. Malakaj co-founded the international scholarly collective “Diversity, Decolonialization, and the German Curriculum” (DDGC). Following DDGC’s inaugural conference March 2017 at the University of North Carolina, Asheville, DDGC has been institutionalized into a biannual conference (the next conference will take place Spring 2019 at St. Olaf College). Dr. Malakaj also serves as the co-editor of DDGC’s official blog.

T1 Winter 2018/19 he will teach a course titled “The Sexual Politics of Weimar Cinema” and “Out of Line: Rebellion, Failure, and Other Queer Ways of Being.” T2 Winter 2018/19 he will teach a course titled “Empire & Mass Media.”

Peer Reviewed Articles and Chapters

“Cruel Optimism and Post-68 Nostalgia in Helma Sanders-Brahms’ Unter dem Pflaster ist der Strand,” Celluloid Revolt: German Screen Cultures in the long Sixties, ed. Marco Abel and Christina Gerhardt (Rochester: Camden House) (forthcoming 2019) 

“The Emotive Textualities of Wilhelm Jensen’s Karin von Schweden,” Neophilologus 102.1 (2018): 59-74.

“Richard Oswald, Magnus Hirschfeld, and the Possible Impossibility of Hygienic Melodrama” Studies in European Cinema 14.3 (2017): 216-230.

“Teaching an Honors Seminar on #BlackLivesMatter in East Texas” with Jeffery L. Littlejohn, Kimberly Bell, Patrick Lewis, and Julia May, Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council 18.2 (2017): 3-15.


 “Germany: A Historical Overview,” “Doris Dörrie,” and “Jutta Brückner,” Women Screenwriters: An International Guide, ed. Jill Nelmes and Jule Selbo (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015): 363-74; 390-91; 394-96.

“Wilhelm Raabe: Der Hungerpastor,” The Literary Encyclopedia. September 2014. 

“Wilhelm Raabe,” The Literary Encyclopedia. May 2014. 

Hotel,” “Das Mädchen Rosemarie,” “Subjektitüde,” and “Die Trapp Familie.” Directory of World Cinema: Germany Volume II (Bristol: Intellect, 2014): 295-96, 224-26, 291-92, 222-24.

Hungerjahre – in einem reichen Land,” and “Shirins Hochzeit.” Directory of World Cinema: Germany Volume I (Bristol: Intellect, 2011): 248-50, 153-55.

Selected Reviews

Approaches to Kurban Said’s Ali und Nino: Love, Identity, and Intercultural Conflict, Carl Niekerk and Cori Crane, eds.” (forthcoming in Studies in 20th & 21st Century Literature)

Archiv/Fiktionen: Verfahren des Archivierens in Literatur und Kultur des langen 19. Jahrhunderts. Daniela Gretz & Nicolas Pethes.” Goethe Yearbook 23 (2018): 322-23.

Afterlives: Allegories of Film and Mortality in Early Weimar Germany. Steve Choe.” (forthcoming in Studies in European Cinema)

“Realism and Romanticism in German Literature. Ed. Dirk Göttsche and Nicholas Saul.” Monatshefte. 107.3 (Fall 2015): 504-06.

Currently Teaching

Winter 2018

CENS202 Great Works of Literature from Central, Eastern and Northern Europe (in English). Sections

Major works of Central, Eastern and Northern European literature from the eighteenth century to the present in their European context.

Winter 2018

GERM304 German Cinema (in English) Sections

Screening, discussion, and critical analysis of German cinema from the silent era to the 21st century.

Winter 2018

GERM303 German Literature Before 1900 (in English) Sections

Reading and discussion of translated works from the German-speaking countries from the Middle Ages to 1900.