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Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics


Dr Charlotte Lee

Dr Charlotte Lee
University Senior Lecturer
Undergraduate Teaching and Examining Officer
German & Dutch
Faculty of Modern & Medieval Languages
Contact details: 
Telephone number: 
+44 (0)1223 762205

Murray Edwards College
Huntingdon Road
United Kingdom


Charlotte's primary focus is German literature and thought of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Her first book, The Very Late Goethe: Self-Consciousness and the Art of Ageing (2014), examined the role of memory in shaping Goethe's last works, and argued that old age can be a time of great insight and creativity. She is currently involved in a number of projects which seek to address negative perceptions of ageing in our own society.

Charlotte is currently working on a study of the relationship between poetry and movement: of how poetry moves, and moves in us. Her methodology is partly inspired by cognitive approaches to literature, a rapidly expanding field of literary criticism. 

Dr Lee welcomes inquiries from potential MPhil and PhD students with research interests relevant to her interests.

Teaching interests: 

Charlotte lectures and supervises on 18th and 19th-century literature and thought and 20th-century poetry.

Research interests: 

18th and 19th-century German literature


Cognitive approaches to literature

Ageing / cultural gerontology

Published works: 


The Very Late Goethe: Self-Consciousness and the Art of Ageing (Oxford: Legenda, 2014).


Edited volume

German Life and Letters, vol. 70.4 (2017), special number: ‘Embodied Cognition around 1800’, co-edited with Katharina Engler-Coldren and Lore Knapp.

Essays and articles

‘The delicate flux of world and spirit: Barthold Heinrich Brockes and distributed cognition’, in Distributed Cognition in Enlightenment and Romantic Culture, ed. by Miranda Anderson, George Rousseau and Michael Wheeler; vol. 3 of The Edinburgh History of Distributed Cognition (forthcoming with Edinburgh University Press, 2019).

‘A meeting of minds? The dialogue between voices female and male in the poems of the West-östlicher Divan’, in Gender, Collaboration, and Authorship in German Culture: Literary Joint Ventures, 1750-1850, ed. by Laura Deiulio and John Lyon (New York: Bloomsbury, 2019), pp. 209-226.

‘Cognition in Action: Goethe’s Märchen’, Publications of the English Goethe Society 87.3 (2018), 121-130.

‘Movement and embodiment in Klopstock and Goethe’, German Life and Letters 70.4 (2017), 508-17.

‘Johann Peter Hebel and the dynamics of hope’, German Life and Letters 68.4 (2015), 517-28.

 ‘Sie ist so ferne ihm, und doch so nah: reciprocity and exchange in the lyric poetry of Sophie Mereau’, Publications of the English Goethe Society 84 (2015), 63-75.

‘Home and homelessness in works by Novalis, Dorothea Schlegel, and Tieck’, Modern Language Review 109.4 (2014), 1030-47.

‘Im flüßgen Element hin und wieder schweifen: development and return in Goethe’s poetry and Hegel’s philosophy’, Goethe Yearbook 20 (2013), 167-77.

‘Mignon and the idea of the secret’, chapter in The Present Word: Culture, Society and the Site of Literature. Essays in honour of Nicholas Boyle, ed. by John Walker (Oxford: Legenda, 2013), pp. 61-69.

‘Durch Wunderkraft erschienen: affinities between Goethe’s Faust and Shakespeare’s The Tempest’, Modern Language Review 107.1 (2012), 198-210, reprinted in German in British-deutscher Literaturtransfer 1756-1832, ed. by Lore Knapp and Eike Kronshage (Berlin: De Gruyter, 2016), pp. 193-200.

‘Wenn ich leben soll, so sei es mit dir! The relationship between father and son in Goethe’s Wilhelm Meisters Wanderjahre’, German Life and Letters 64.4 (2011), 489-500.

‘Fausts Credo in wechselnder Beleuchtung’, Jahrburch des Freien Deutschen Hochstifts (2011), 8-22.

Book reviews for the Modern Language Review and the Journal for Eighteenth Century Studies.