Matthias Rothe

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328G Folwell Hall
9 Pleasant St SE

"After all, what would be the value of the passion for knowledge if it resulted only in a certain amount of knowledgeableness and not, in one way or another and to the extent possible, in the knower's straying afield of himself? There are times in life when the question of knowing if one can think differently than one thinks, and perceive differently than one sees, is absolutely necessary if one is to go on looking and reflecting at all …" (Michel Foucault from: The History of Sexuality, Volume 2: p 8-9)

Educational Background & Specialties


  • Aesthetics and Economy
  • Brechtian and contemporary theater
  • Weimar Culture and Philosophy
  • Social Control and Inequality
Courses Taught
  • Ger8300: New Regimes of Segregation, Berlin/Twin Cities; co-taught with Daniela Dandler (School of Architecture), Stephan Lanz (urban studies, Viadrina University)
  • Phil4414/5414: Political Philosophy 'Marx and Marxism'
  • Phil5760/FR5350/GER5610: Michel Foucault, Philosopher
  • GER3410: East Germany and its Literature
  • Taught at University of Graz, Spring 2019 (teaching exchange): Ästhetische Theorie (MA), DDR-Literatur (Vorlesung), Episches Theater (MA)
  • ITAL5501/GER3610/5610 Theories and Media of Fascism (co-taught with Lorenzo Fabbri)
  • Ger3655 Social Control and Surveillance
  • Ger5610/Pol5210 Reading Marx
  • Ger3441 Newest German Literature
  • CL8910/CSDS 8910/GER 8240 Brecht's Theater(s)
  • All8920/GER8930/CSCL8910: Kant in Asia. The Politics of German Idealism; co-taught with Travis Workman
  • Ger 4040/TH 3950 Play Brecht, Play Money (German Play, directing)
  • Ger 8001/CL 8910 Weimar Philosophy
  • Ger 5610 Understanding Kant
  • GER8820/CSDS 8990/FREN 8230: Adorno/Foucault. Forms of Critique
  • GSD 3451: Major Project Seminar
  • Ger 3104: Brecht's Twentieth Century
  • EMS 8250/GER 8820/HIST 8960 - The Historical Dimension of Modern Knowledge (co-taught with JB Shank)
  • Ger 8820: The Formation of Modern Ethics in Kant and Adam Smith
  • Ger 4040: German Play: Dada Revue, directing
  • Germ 3512: German Culture and Civilization 1700 to the Present
  • Germ 3510: The Worker in Art, Politics & Philosophy
  • Germ 5610: Modernity through the Eyes of Walter Benjamin
  • Ger 1905: The Secret Code of Acting. A Brief History of Acting Techniques
  • Germ 3104W: The Dangerousness of Literature
Research & Professional Activities

Professional Activities

  • Brecht Tage Berlin 2018: Brecht und das Fragment: Conception/Project Management in collaboration with Astrid Oesmann (Rice University) , 2/5 2018 - 2/9 2018
  • Editorial Board Brecht Yearbook: Book Review Editor
  • IAS Research Collaborative: "Rehearsing Failure"/"Expanded Aesthetics" (with Lisa Channer): 2014 - 2016
  • Member: Deutsche Gesellschaft für die Erforschung des 18. Jahrhunderts
  • Co-Organizer of TEMS (Theorizing Early Modern Studies, research collaborative):


  • Conference: "The Politics of Form", a collaboration between Ulrich Plass (Wesleyan University), Falko Schmieder (ZfL Berlin), Matthias Rothe (GSD, UMN) :, November 17, 2016 - November 20, 2016
  • Conference: Theorizing Crisis. The Conceptions of Economy of the Frankfurt School (1924-1969) : in collaboration with Bastian Ronge (Philosophy, Humboldt University Berlin), March 28/2014 - March 30/2014
  • Conference Organisation with Thomas Bénatouïl, département de philosophie de l’Université Nancy 2. : Elements of Stoicism in Modern Thought. French-English-German, 07/03 2009 - 07/10 2009
  • Conference Organisation with Michael Eggers, University of Cologne, Department of German: Wissenschaftsgeschichte als Begriffgeschichte/History of Science as a History of Concepts, 07/08 2006 - 07/10 2006
  • Brecht und das Fragment. Rothe, Matthias, Astrid Oesmann, Verbrecher Verlag, Co-Editor, 2020.
  • Was bleibt? Sieben Befunde zur DDR-Literatur: Rothe, Matthias, Klett & Cotta, MERKUR 844 , 2019.
  • Fleischhacker by B.Brecht: Rothe, Matthias, Phoebe von Held, introduction and collaboratively translated; Bloomsbury London, Brecht and the Writer's Workshop. Fatzer and other Fragments (eds. Tom Kuhn and Charlotte Ryland), 11-68, 2019.
  • "Returning Marx to Kant?" (Review essay): Rothe, Matthias, Brill, Historical Materialism, 27.1 , 2019.
  • "Adorno's Brecht. The Other Origin of Negative Dialectics": Rothe, Matthias, in: Beverly, Best, Bonefeld, Werner, O'Kane, Chris (eds.) The SAGE Handbook of Frankfurt School Critical Theory, 2018.
  • "Die Haudenosaunee und Marx": Rothe, Matthias, Klett-Cotta, Merkur 71 (817) 21-34, 2017. Link
  • "The Temporality of Critique. Bertolt Brecht's Fragment 'Jae Fleischhacker in Chikago'": Rothe, Matthias, Camden House, Brecht Yearbook 40, pp. 29-53, 2016.
  • The Frankfurt School: Philosophy and (political) economy. History of the Human Sciences 29/2, April 2016 (Sage) Bastian Ronge, Matthias Rothe co-editors. Link
  • "Sohn-Rethel, das Theoriekunstwerk": Rothe, Matthias, Merkur 70 (801) , 2016, pp. 32-45.
  • "Kant and Epictetus. Transformations of Imperial Stoicism": Rothe, Matthias, Rochester Institute of Technology Press, in: Epictetus: His Continuing Influences and Contemporary Relevance, Dane R. Gordon, David B. Suits (eds.) , 131-150, 2014.
  • "Sovereignty unchained and chained: Theorizing control through »sovereignty«": Rothe, Matthias, InterDisciplines Journal of History and Sociology, Vol. 4, No 2 (2013) pp. 27-58, 2013. Link
  • Kritik nach Kant. Foucaults und Adornos "Gute Endlichkeit": Rothe, Matthias, Helle Panke, Reihe: Philosophische Gespräche, Heft 30 40 pages, 2013. Link
  • Zur Erfahrung von Abkopplung (detachment) in Entwürfen sozialer Ordnung im 18. Jahrhundert: Rothe, Matthias, Aisthesis, Gefühllose Aufklärung. Anaisthesis oder die Unempfindlichkeit im Zeitalter der Aufklärung Katja Battenfeld, Cornelia Bogen, Ingo Uhlig und Patrick Wulfleff (eds.), 223-242, 2012.
  • "L'eau de l'hygiéne et l'eau de la prudence": Rothe, Matthias, Eds. Didier Francfort/Antoine Nivière, Presses Universitaires de Nancy, Culture des villes d'eau, 2011.
  • Review: Michel Foucault "Le courage de la vérité. Le gouvernement de soi et des autres II. Cours au Collège de France (1984)": Rothe, Matthias, Ancient Philosophy Volume 31/2 , 2011.
  • "Wie und zu welchem Zweck Foucault Marx gebraucht": Rothe, Matthias, Wilhem Fink, Der sich selbst entfremdete und wiedergefundene Marx. Eds. Birthe Löschenkohl, Falko Schmieder, Helmut Lethen, 193-203, 2010.
  • "Um die Überwachung geht es nicht" : Rothe, Matthias, Unrast Münster, Leipziger Kamera (ed.): Kontrollverluste. Interventionen gegen Überwachung, 2009.
  • "Die Entstehung der Gefühle. Aspekte einer Geschichte des philosophischen Nachdenkens über die Affekte": Rothe, Matthias, Theater der Zeit, Koordinaten der Leidenschaft. Kulturelle Aufführungen von Gefühlen. Eds. Clemens Risi/Jens Roselt, 179-200, 2009.
  • Wissenschaftsgeschichte als Begriffsgeschichte. Terminologische Umbrüche im Entstehungsprozess der modernen Wissenschaften. Rothe, Matthias, Michael Eggers, Transcript, Co-Editor, 2009.
  • "Spontan. Modifikation eines Begriffs im 18. Jahrhundert": Rothe, Matthias, De Gruyter , Kulturen des Wissens im 18. Jahrhundert. Ed. Johannes Ulrich Schneider, 415-424, 2008.
  • Lesen und Zuschauen im 18. Jahrhundert. Die Erzeugung und Aufhebung von Abwesenheit. Rothe, Matthias, Königshausen & Neumann, Author, 2005.
  • "Big Brother im Panopticon": Rothe, Matthias, Heise/Telepolis, Ralf Grötker (ed) Privat. , 33-43, 2003.
  • Ritualisierte Tabuverletzung, Lachkultur und das Karnevaleske. Rothe, Matthias, Hartmut Schröder, P. Lang, Co-Editor, 2002.
  • Talle Faculty Research Award (for Staging Economy--Critique through Presentation in Brecht's Theater), 01/01 2016 - 12/31 2017
  • DAAD Visiting Professor, UT at Austin, January 2008 - May 2008
  • Research Fellow at the Center for Literary and Cultural Research, Berlin, January 2013 - March 2013