Welcome! I am a Postdoctoral Fellow in English at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. My research interests include Victorian literature and culture; postcolonial theory and gender studies; theories of embodiment, affect, and sensation; and particularly 19th-century writings on sexuality, pregnancy, and maternity.​ ​I earned a B.A. in English and German as well as an M.A. in English and Modern European History from the University of Rostock, Germany, and I recently completed my Ph.D. in English at UNC-Chapel Hill.

​My dissertation, “Spectacularly Conceived: Sexual Violence and Burdened Motherhood in Nineteenth-Century British Literature,” investigates spectacular scenes of assault and the staging of women’s reproductive capacity in The History of Mary Prince, Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s Aurora Leigh and other poems, and George Eliot’s Middlemarch and Daniel Deronda. The project has been awarded the Midwest Victorian Studies Association Walter L. Arnstein Prize (2016) as well as the Fred and Joan Thomson Award for Outstanding Dissertation Work from UNC (2015).


I co-chaired the British Women Writers Conference Steering Committee for the 25th Anniversary Conference in Chapel Hill in June 2017, and am currently co-editing an issue of Women's Writing on the theme of "Generations." I served as Assistant Editor for the Keats-Shelley Journal from 2012 to 2015.

Department of English and Comparative Literature
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Greenlaw Hall, CB# 3520
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3520
thierauf (at) unc (dot) edu

UNC English Department Profile