Jan Kühne, born in Dresden, studied at Heidelberg University and at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He conducted his postdoctoral research at the Martin Buber Society of Fellows, has been a post-doctoral research fellow and scholar-artist at the Israeli Institute for Advanced Studies, and is currently an affiliated researcher at the Franz Rosenzweig Minerva Research Center for German-Jewish Literature and Cultural History.
His Ph.D. research was dedicated to the German-Jewish writer Sammy Gronemann (1875-1952). Besides documenting Gronemann’s largely unknown Israeli and dramatic oeuvre (1936-1952), this project included studies in the field of German-Jewish literature in Palestine and Israel. The dissertation was published under the title: ”Die zionistische Komödie im Drama Sammy Gronemanns – Über Ursprünge und Eigenarten einer latenten Gattung“ (2020). On the basis of this research, Kühne initiated and serves as editor in chief of the ongoing Critical Edition of Collected Works by Sammy Gronemann, of which three volumes have already been published.
Currently, Kühne is working on a new book devoted to German and Hebrew multilingualism in performance and literature. While mapping the diversity of multilingual modalities in modern German-Jewish and Hebrew literature, he focuses on homophonic translation as a hitherto unacknowledged multilingual poetic device in Jewish literatures of German affiliation.
During his Ph.D. research, Kühne was also a Rosenzweig-fellow. Among other projects, he participated in the Traces of German-Jewish History and took care of the arrangement and description of the Habimah Administrative Archive 1925–1933 at the Israeli Center for the Documentation of the Performing Arts at Tel Aviv University.
Recent Publications include:
- “The German Archive of the Hebrew Habima: Bureaucracy and Identity” (Co-Author: Shelly Zer-Zion), in Naharaim 7.1-2 (2013), pp. 239-260.
- “Of the Two the Jew is – (Curtain falls.)” — Sammy Gronemann’s Dramaturgy of the German-Jewish Encounter in Mandate-Palestine/Israel (1936-1952), in Jewish Culture and History 17.1 (2016), pp. 254-274.
- “German-Jewish Literature in Mandate Palestine and Israel (1933-2017)” [ספרות יהודית גרמנית בתקופת היישוב ובמדינת ישראל (2017-1933)], in חידושים [Chidushim] 19 (2017), pp. 121-44.
- “A Parable of three Languages.”Nathan der Weise” in Arabic, Hebrew, and German,” in Lessing Yearbook XLV (2018), 93–111.
- “A German-Hebrew French Kiss: On Bilingual Homophony and Other Multilingual Intimacies in German-Jewish Literature,” in Yearbook for European Jewish Literature Studies 6 (2019), 41–89.
- “Nathan Alterman’s Bilingual Adaptation of Heinrich Heine’s ’Lorelei’: Hebrew-German Homophony as Parody”, in Carmen Reichert, Bettina Bannasch and Alfred Wildfeuer (eds.), Zukunft der Sprache, Zukunft der Nation. Debatten um jüdische Sprache und Literatur im Kontext von Mehrsprachigkeit und Nationbuilding, Berlin [forthcoming, 2021].
- Dan Pagis' Bilingual Poem "Ein Leben" – An Ophthalmologic Poetics of German-Hebrew Eye-Contact, in Leo Baeck Yearbook [accepted, forthcoming].
- “Deutschsprachige jüdische Literatur in Palästina/Israel”, in Hans Otto Horch (ed.), Handbuch der deutsch-jüdischen Literatur, Berlin 2015, pp. 201–220.
- “Tohuwabohu”, in Dan Diner (ed.), Enzyklopädie jüdischer Geschichte und Kultur, Vol. 6, Metzler 2015, pp. 127–131.
- “‘Deutschlands besseres Selbst‘? – Nathan der Weise in Israel,” in Dirk Niefanger et al. (eds.), Lessing und das Judentum, Olms 2015, pp. 433–458.
- “‘Wo wohnst Du nun zwischen diesen Worten’? Zur Translingualität (Deutschsprachig) Jüdischer Literatur,” in Stefanie Willeke and Norbert Eke, Zwischen den Sprachen – Mit der Sprache? Deutschsprachige Literatur in Palästina Und Israel, Paderborn 2018, pp. 41–62.