Bethany Wiggin

Bethany Wiggin

Contact Information

735 Williams Hall
Associate Professor of German
Founding Director, Penn Program in Environmental Humanities

Bethany Wiggin is the Founding Director of the Penn Program in Environmental Humanities and an Associate Professor of German. Her scholarship explores histories of migration, ecology, language and cultural translation since the Columbian exchange on both sides of the Atlantic world. She is author of the book, Novel Translations: The German Novel and the European Book, 1680-1730 (Cornell UP); editor of three volumes, Un/Translatables: New Maps for Germanic Literatures (Northwestern UP, with Catriona MacLeod), Babel of the Atlantic (Penn State UP), and Timescales: Ecological Temporalities across Disciplines (under review, with Carolyn Fornoff and Patricia Kim); and a special issue of the German Studies Review on The Rise and Fall of Monolingualism (forthcoming 2019, with David Gramling). 

Her scholarship also aims to engage audiences beyond the academy to participate in making knowledge to connect the arts and sciences; her work has been featured on (selections) the PBS Newshour, CBS Evening News, CNN, The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Vice, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Science Friday, Die TagesschauLe Monde. Ongoing collaborative, public projects include: Data RefugeAn Ecotopian Toolkit for the Anthropocene, and the Schuylkill River and Urban Waters Research Corps. She has been a Whiting Fellow and was honored by the Union of Concerned Scientists with a Science Defender award. She is currently at work on Germanopolis: Utopia Found and Lost in Penn's Woods.

Research Interests

environmental humanities, translation and multilingualism, cultural memory, public history and humanities