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Dr. Carla J. Maier

Visiting Professor of Cultural Studies


Am Neuen Palais 10
Building 19, Room 0.26
14469 Potsdam


consulting hours
Wed. 11-12
Consultation hours are by appointment only.


I am a cultural studies researcher with a focus on sound and listening, a university teacher, and an editor based in Berlin. My work is situated in sound studies, cultural studies, postcolonial studies, cultural anthropology, and the environmental humanities. I received my PhD in British Literary and Cultural Studies (Anglistik) in 2013 from the Goethe University Frankfurt/Main and have since taught at various universities in Germany and Denmark.

I have published on electronic popular and club music, postcolonial and transcultural aspects of music production and sound art, on everyday urban sound practices and colonial traces in the urban space, as well as on decolonial approaches in listening practice and theory.

I am the author of Transcultural Sound Practices: British Asian Dance Music as Cultural Transformation(2020), which investigates sound as part of a wider assemblage of cultural technologies, politics and practices.

My recent work deals with listening and the entangled multi-sensorial, anti-colonial, and multi-species dimensions of contemporary environmental and social issues, which I am developing within the research collective Planetary Listening and in other collaborative contexts.

Before joining the University of Potsdam as visiting professor in Cultural Studies, I successfully completed a Marie Curie Fellowship funded by the European Commission under Horizon 2020 for the project Travelling Sounds: A Cultural Analysis of Sonic Artefacts in Postcolonial Europe (2018-2020) at the Department of Arts and Cultural Studies and the Sound Studies Lab, University of Copenhagen. I produced audio papers and articles as part of the research outcome.

I am part of the editorial team of Norient Books, which publishes in subject areas between art, journalism, and academia with a focus on music, sound, and noise.

As part of the Amo Collective, comprised of researchers, artists, and activists,  I am engaged in collaboratively organising the annual public walk Decolonial Flânerie in Berlin.




Transcultural Sound Practices: British Asian Dance Music as Cultural Transformation. New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2020.


Edited Volumes

Arenen Transkultureller Bildung: Resonanzen / Interferenzen. Special Issue. Ed. with Birgit Althans. Paragrana: Internationale Zeitschrift für Historische Anthropologie 28.2 (2019).

Functional Sounds in History and the Public Sphere. Proceedings of the First International ESSA Conference 2013, Part II. Ed. with Holger Schulze. SoundEffects - An Interdisciplinary Journal of Sound and Sound Experience 5.1 (2016).


Recent Articles and Book Chapters

»Decolonial Flânerie: Sensing the City Otherwise. Traces of Listening and Remembering in Contested Urban Spaces« (with Adela Taleb and Melanye Garland) In: A Map to Possession Island. K. Verlag Berlin. Forthcoming 2023.

»Transcultural Aesthetic Practices in the Classroom: Sounds, Spaces, Bodies« (with Elise v. Bernstorff) In: Cultural Sustainability and Arts Education. International Perspectives on the Aesthetics of Transformation. Ed. Benjamin Jörissen, Lisa Unterberg, Tanja Klepacki. Singapore: Springer, 2023. 115-126.

»Rhythming: A Manifesto« (with Melissa van Drie), Sound Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal Volume 8.1 (2022): 2-19.

»The Amplification«. In: Bloomsbury Handbook of the Anthropology of Sound. Hg. Holger Schulze. New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2020.

»Transkulturelle Praktiken im postmigrantischen Theater und in der Schule. Method Mixing als Transmission« (with v. Bernstorff, Wieland, Althans). In: Kulturelle Bildung. Theoretische Perspektiven, methodologische Herausforderungen und empirische Befunde. Münster: Waxmann, 2020.

»Membrane. Materialities and Intensities of Sound« (Carla J. Maier in conversation with Marianthi Papalexandri-Alexandri). Part VI Making Sound. Building Media Instruments as Sound Art. In: The Bloomsbury Handbook of Sound Art. Hg. Sanne Krogh Groth & Holger Schulze. New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2020. 447-457.

»Living With Sound: The Semiotics and Mediology of Sonic Signs« (written as a collaborator with Holger Schulze). In: Schulze, Holger. Sound Works: A Cultural Theory of Sound Design. New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2019

»The Sound of Afrofuturism« (mit Stefanie Alisch). In: We Travel the Space Ways: Black Imagination, Fragments, and Diffractions. Hg. Henriette Gunkel and kara lynch. Bielefeld: transcript, 2019. 133-149.


Audio Papers

»Reasoning with inner-city rhythms« Episode #1 of the series Sound Practices & Modes of Listening (by Carla J. Maier), an experimental audio paper co-produced with hip hop artist and MC Manmeet Kaur for Norient. The now in sound. July 2021. Audio Paper.

»Towards an ethics of listening: Sonic research and postcolonial sensibilities« Special issue Sounds of Science: Methods and Aesthetics in Auditory Research Practices in Seismograf. 2021. Audio Paper.

»Sound and COVID-19: Emerging sonic practices and formations« (with Berlin Sonic Thinking Collective). 2020. Audio Paper.