- Slavery and Antislavery
- History of Capitalism
- Settler Colonialism
- Print Culture and the History of the Book
- History of Sexuality
- Immigrant Literature
- Poetry and Poetics
|MA in North American Literature and Cultural Studies
John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin
Thesis: “Hints Left in Writing: Print History, Hermeneutics, and the Creation of a Readerly Ethics in John Woolman’s Journal”
First Advisor: Frank Kelleter
Second Advisor: Mary Ann Snyder-Körber
|2012||BA in Languages and Literature
Senior Project: “Within This Hazel”
Advisor: Robert Kelly
Board Members: Ann Lauterbach, Karen Sullivan
Fellowships and Prizes
|2021 - 2022||German Research Foundation (DFG) Completion Grant
Graduate School of North American Studies
Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
|2018 - 2021||
German Research Foundation (DFG) Doctoral Fellowship
Barra Foundation International Research Fellowship
Charles Brockden Brown Society Travel Award
Willi Paul Adams Prize
The Flow Chart Foundation/Academy of American Poets Prize
Irma Brandeis Prize for Best Proposed BA Thesis in the Humanities
Mary McCarthy Prize for Best Undergraduate Prose
Research Assistantships and Academic Work Experience
STIBET-Doktorandenförderung des DAAD
Other Academic Experience
PhD Representative, Evaluation of the GSNAS („Begehung“)
Coordinator for English Language Offerings and Certified Academic Writing Instructor
Student Member, Professorship Appointment Committee
Voices & Agencies: America and the Atlantic, 1600-1865 (DFG Network)
Society of Early Americanists (SEA)
German Association for American Studies (DGfA/GAAS)
Charles Brockden Brown Society
Innocents, Saints, and Apostates: Slavery and Antislavery in the Colonial Period (Department of Culture, John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, Winter 2020/2021).
War and Peace in American Culture and Literature from the Colonial Period to the Present (Department of English and American Studies, Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany, Summer 2018).
The Term Paper (Schreibzentrum|Writing Center, Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany, Summer 2018, Winter 2017/2018).
Interest, Question, Argument (Schreibzentrum|Writing Center, Julius-Maximilians Universität Würzburg, Germany, Summer 2018, Winter 2017/2018).
Understanding North America A (Teaching Assistant, Department of Literature, John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, Winter 2016/2017).
Settling Debt: Antislavery and Colonial Crisis, 1675-1775 (Dissertationsprojekt)
Dissertation in Kultur
First supervisor: Prof. Dr. Frank Kelleter
Second supervisor: Prof. Dr. Florian Sedlmeier
Third supervisor: Prof. Laura M. Stevens, PhD
Settling Debt argues that early antislavery discourse was never exclusively about slavery. Rather, over the course of the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, antislavery thought, publishing, and action emerged and reemerged throughout the English Atlantic in moments of perceived crisis, especially with regards to the fate and promises of religio-political colonial projects such as those of Puritan New England and Quaker Pennsylvania.
Writers like Samuel Sewall, Ralph Sandiford, Benjamin Lay, John Woolman, as well as a host of previously unstudied authors, came to articulate the view that racial slavery incurred a cosmic debt. This debt would have to be settled if colonial projects were to fulfill world-historical and material goals rooted both in eschatological vision and in hopes for the attainment of liberty through increased access to property, especially amongst religious minorities and the poor. Tragically, this “settlement” could only incur further debt. To realize these goals, settlers would continually dispossess Indigenous people of their land, consolidating a nascent racial regime of ownership.
Organized into a thematic and chronological triptych—“Governing,” “Counter-Conduct,” and “Accumulation”—Settling Debt reads printed early antislavery texts alongside and against archives of religious, political, economic, and social crisis that dramatically transformed British North America and the Atlantic world more broadly. Attending to historical and material conditions, this wide-ranging account not only works toward a reconsideration of the bond between early antislavery discourse and settler colonialism, but also sheds light on how struggles for freedom under capitalism have often been framed and limited by notions of indebtedness and private property.
Seglias, Cameron. Book Review: “The Quakers, 1656–1723: The Evolution of an Alternative Community by Richard C. Allen and Rosemary Moore with specialist contributors.” The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography 145, no. 1 (2021): 87-88.
Seglias, Cameron. “Historical Poem/Historisches Gedicht.” Translated by Max Zschorna. Abwärts! 37 (2020): 18. (Poetry).
Seglias, Cameron, and Laura Katzman. “1898: Imag(in)ing the Caribbean in the Age of the Spanish-American War,” 25.06.2019, Berlin, H-Soz-Kult (January 2020): <www.hsozkult.de/conferencereport/id/tagungsberichte-8595>.
Seglias, Cameron. “Für James Nayler.” Translated by Max Zschorna. Abwärts! 35 (2020): 18-19. (Poetry).
Seglias, Cameron. For Else. Annandale-on-Hudson: Metambesen, 2014. (Poetry).
Seglias, Cameron. “Julian Beck/Now in Paradise.” Mousse Magazine (June 2014).
Seglias, Cameron. “Anon.” Bard Papers (Spring 2012): 32-33. (Poetry).
Seglias, Cameron. “To Build the Cathedral of Ephemeral Materials: The Question of a Contemporary Poetics.” Forum (Spring 2010): 5-10.
Conferences and Invited Talks
“Samuel Sewall and Some Paradoxes of Settler Equality” (“What Stands Between Us and What Stands Before Us: Pasts, Presents, and Futures of (In)Equality in the US,” Ringvorlesung Lecture Series, Winter Semester 2021/2022, John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, 1 December 2021).
“Benjamin Lay’s Settler Commonwealth” (Invited Talk, “Race and Propertization,” Structural Transformation of Property Collaborative Research Centre/Department of North American History Conference, Universität Erfurt, Germany, 18-19 November 2021).
“‘Except as a Punishment for Crime:’ Slavery and Incarceration in Early America” (Invited Talk, Social Movements from the Early Republic to the Antebellum Era, MA Lecture Course, Summer Semester 2021, John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, 12 May 2021).
“No Country for Poor Men: Religion and the Rise of Capitalism in Early Pennsylvania” (“The Many Pasts, Presents, and Futures of Early America,” 12th Biennial Conference of the Society of Early Americanists, Virtual Conference, 3-7 March 2021).
“Anglophone Antislavery and Colonial Power in Crisis” (Invited Talk, “Discourses and Practices of Colonialism and Settlement in North America,” MA Lecture Course, Winter Semester 2020/2021, John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, 3 February 2021).
“Slavery, Colonial Crisis, and the Biopolitics of Containment in Eighteenth-Century America” (“Disaster and Disease in North America,” Ringvorlesung Lecture Series, Winter Semester 2020/2021, John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, 25 November 2020).
“Religious Exclusion, Print Participation: Benjamin Lay and Philadelphia Quakers, ca. 1738” (“Participation in American Culture and Society,” 67th Annual Meeting of the German Association for American Studies (DGfA/GAAS), Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Germany, 4-6 June 2020). (Cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic).
“‘Black as Cain:’ Eighteenth-Century Dissenting Protestantism’s Ambiguous Antislavery” (“Dissent of the Governed, c18 and c21,” 12th Biennial Conference of the Charles Brockden Brown Society, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, 3-5 October 2019).
“The Published Self: Modernity, Ethics, Eighteenth-Century Antislavery” (Talk at the Helmerich Center for American Research, Gilcrease Museum, University of Tulsa, OK, 13 September 2019).
Workshops and Academies
“Ralph Sandiford’s Eschaton of Power” (The Futures of American Studies Institute, Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, USA, 21-27 June 2021).
“Antislavery and Colonial Anxiety, 1729-1791” (Heidelberg Center for American Studies Spring Academy, Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, 22-28 March 2020). (Cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic).
“The Published Self in the Eighteenth-Century Abolitionist Public Sphere” (“Transatlantic Conversations: New and Emerging Approaches to Early American Studies,” Society of Early Americanists/Obama Institute Workshop and Conference, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz, 4-6 October 2018).
“Violence amid Rupture,” (“Race, Violence, and Rupture in the United States,” Panel Discussion, John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, 28 April 2021).
“Slavery” (“The 1776 Report and Its Afterlives: Critical Responses from German American Studies,” Digital Teach-In, Universität zu Köln, 4 February 2021)
“Slave Revolt and the Practices of Containment” (“Library Company Fireside Chats: A Digital Series,” Webinar for the Library Company of Philadelphia, PA, USA, 13 August 2020).
Conference Organization and Chaired Panels
Co-Organizer and Moderator, “Self-Writing in the Age of Un-selfing” (Voices & Agencies: America and the Atlantic, 1600-1865” DFG Network Workshop, John F. Kennedy Institute, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, 24-26 February 2022).
Panel Chair, “Religion and Mammon in Early American Literature” (“The Many Pasts, Presents, and Futures of Early America,” 12th Biennial Conference of the Society of Early Americanists, Virtual Conference, 3-7 March 2021).
Panel Chair, “Flickering Enlightenment: Ambiguity in Early America” (“American Ambiguities: Is Now the Era of Our Disconsent?” 12th Annual Graduate Conference, Graduate School of North American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, 22-24 May 2019).
Co-Organizer and Moderator (“American Ambiguities: Is Now the Era of Our Disconsent?” 12th Annual Graduate Conference, Graduate School of North American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, 22-24 May 2019).