Astrid Greve Kristensen: Research & CV

Strangers in a strange land. The Returns of Orphans in German and Czech Literature of the 2000’s.
comparative study of the works of Jáchym Topol, Radka Denemarková and W. G. Sebald

Research Area 3 – Objects, Traces, Mapping: Everyday experience of spaces

Contact: astrid.greve(@)

The main objective of this project is to bring forth a new understanding of the orphan as a literary and cultural figure as it is presented in modern historical fiction. The focus is on fiction that in particular tells the story of orphans in the Czech lands between the 1940’s and 1960’s, encompassing the two dominating isms of the 20th century, Fascism and Socialism. The texts I have initially chosen to compare are Peníze od Hitlera ([Money from Hitler] 2006) by Radka Denemarková,Austerlitz (2001) by W. G. Sebald and Kloktat dehet ([Gargling with Tar] 2005) by Jáchym Topol. By comparing texts that differ widely in their approach to representing trauma and loss, I believe the orphan narrative gives a variety of voices. My theoretical approach will be interdisciplinary and based on a combination of literary possible worlds theory and space/memory theories.



October 2020 – : Sorbonne University. PhD thesis in Literature, under the supervision of Clara Royer MCF, HDR.
Thesis: “Strangers in a Strange Land. The Returns of Orphans in German and Czech Literature of the 2000’s”.

Aug 2017 –May 2019: University of Oslo, Master in European languages: Russian, Polish, Czech, Bosnian/Serbian/Croatian. Examples of subjects:Translation to and from a Slavic language. Czech text studies. Master’s thesis on Czech modern literature.

Aug 2015 –June 2017: University of Oslo, Bachelor in European languages: Polish, Czech, Bosnian/Serbian/Croatian
Examples of subjects:Poland, Czech Republic and the Balkans: Literature and Society, Czech Language in Use.

Aug 2012-December 2015: University of Oslo, Bachelor in Comparative Literature. Examples of subjects:Literary Theory basics, Literature of the West from 1900 until Today, Czech Language: Texts and Reading, History of Central Europe.

Aug 2009 –June 2011: Oslo By Steinerskole (High School), Special subjects: Literature and English.

Aug 2008-June 2009: Nesbru Videregående skole (High School), Pre-IB, international studies

Summer School of Slavonic Studies

2014 –Praha (Letní škola slovanských studií, Karlova Univerzita)
2016 –Brno (Letní škola slovanských (bohemistických) studií, Masarykova Univerzita) 2018 –Olomouc (Letní škola slovanských studií (LŠSS), Palacký Univerzita)


20-22 May 2021: “Dilemmas of Modernity: 200 Years of Central European Cultures and Societies.” Online Conference organized by College for Central European Studies, 4EU+ Center for French Cultural and Francophone Studies, University of Warsaw. Conference paper: “Ilja Plays Civil War: The Layered Pasts of Kloktat dehet Through the Eyes of an Orphan”.


15-17 April 2021: “The Past in the Present: the Dynamics of Remembrance”. Interdisciplinary Online PhD Seminar. University of Warsaw. Organized by 4EU+.