Diversity Award Recipients 2022

Simone Ketterl, who is pursuing her doctorate in Modern German Literary Studies, received the award for critically examining stereotypes both in her teaching and through public events she organizes on a regular basis. She consistently addresses mechanisms of marginalization and works with theories that transcend the narrow framework of Eurocentric scholarship.

In her classes, Simone Ketterl focuses on authors that have long been rendered invisible by a restrictive literary canon. Her students are encouraged to question one-sided notions of literature, and to explore the full range of innovative and influential literary texts instead. With the help of gender and queer theories, disability studies, and postcolonial concepts, she enables students to critically analyze various forms of discrimination. Moreover, Simone Ketterl regularly invites dramaturges, transgender activists, and other public figures for readings and panel discussions. This way, she challenges distorted images of writers and literature alike, and increases the visibility of literary diversity in research, teaching, and public events.

Winuss Mohtezebsade received the award for her excellent master’s thesis in Psychology. Her study investigates the connection between migrant background and self-awareness of young people, closing an important research gap.

The thesis examines the influence of belonging to a so-called ethnic minority on people’s self-perception, while also taking the role of parenting into account. The results of the project show that students with a migration background score higher than students without a migration background in every category of self-awareness, be it psychological, emotional, or physical. Winuss Mohtezebsade’s study further demonstrates that parenting behavior has no impact on this positive self-perception. The thesis is a great example of interdisciplinary research that contributes to making people with a migration background more visible and, most importantly, challenges the one-sided images of migration as a deficient experience.

This excerpt from the university’s brochure on the Dies academicus event 2022(235.7 KB, 4 pages) provides an extensive introduction to the Diversity Award recipients [only available in German].